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Recycling Basics

Please click on the links below for a more thorough listing of examples of recyclable materials:

Plastics

Paper

Cardboard

Tin Cans and Aluminum

Metal/Steel

Other items
(Glass, light bulbs, hazardous waste etc.)

 

Plastics 

The types of plastics which are recyclable have expanded greatly in recent years. Basically, plastics which are labeled #1 through #7 are recyclable in Spencer. Look for the logo on the package. It helps if you can crush the plastic down so that more items can be placed in the recycling container.

Any plastic container (both clear & colored) with #1, #2, #3, #4, #5, #6 & #7 imprinted inside the recycling logo on the container.

This includes:

  • Plastic milk jugs
  • The plastic container of your TV dinner
  • Plastic water bottles and fruit drink bottles
  • Shampoo bottles
  • Laundry bottles
  • Dish washing liquid containers
  • Plastic sacks (When you buy something, recycle the bag. Just keep the plastic sacks together in one of your plastic bags. You can also include bread wrappers, Saran Wrap, the plastic wrapper around your newspaper and dry cleaning bags.)
  • Etc

Styrofoam (including #7 Poly Styrene), Fast Food Containers, Rigid Plastics and Disposable Diapers can NOT be recycled at this time.


Paper 

When Spencer first began recycling efforts; only your newspaper could be recycled. Now, you can recycle all of the shiny coupon inserts as well as the weekend entertainment section. Also, both colored and white paper are recyclable.

Paper items includes:

  • Newspapers/Newsprint
  • Coupon inserts
  • Special advertising sections
  • Magazines
  • Brown paper shopping bags
  • White ledger paper
  • Envelopes - even those with plastic 'windows' can be recycled now!
  • Computer paper
  • Phone books* - Rip Pages & Covers Off For Recycling. Throw Glued End Away In Garbage
  • Colored paper
  • Shredded paper
  • Envelopes with gum, labels or plastic windows
  • Books* - Rip Pages & Covers Off For Recycling. Throw Glued End Away In Garbage

Sorry, waxed paper, waxed cardboard and laminated sheets are not accepted. Also, no toilet paper, paper towels or facial tissues.

*See NEWS - "WHAT TO DO WITH USED BOOKS?" For Other Alternatives on Recycling Used Books.


Cardboard 

If it's cardboard - it can likely be recycled.

Some examples include:

  • Boxes
  • The box your TV dinner came in
  • Pizza Boxes (if they don't have too much grease in them!)
  • Cereal Boxes
  • Pop and Beer Boxes
  • Facial tissue boxes
  • Corrugated cardboard
  • Shoe boxes

 


Tin Cans & Aluminum 

The next time you fix a can of peas or beans from a tin can, just zip off the lid, rinse it out (you can leave the label on it) and place in the recycling bin.

"Tin" items includes:

  • Tin cans from food - any tin container
  • If you don't take your redeemable cans back to get your 5-cent deposit, place them them in the recycling bin.
  • Aerosol cans
  • Foil wrap, pie tins/plates, aluminum pans etc.

Metal/Steel 

Those individuals with pieces of metal (such as bicycles, grills, metal shelving/frames, old lawn mowers, etc.) may take them to the city's Transfer Station.

Transfer Station
   
Phone: Address:
(712) 580-7270 3101 W. 18th St.
  Spencer, IA 51301
   
Year-Round Hours: (excluding holidays)
Monday - Saturday: 7:30 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.
 



Other Items 

Fluorescent light bulbs:

The new, energy efficient fluorescent light bulbs are not appropriate for recycling with your weekly city pickup.

However, the Household Hazardous Waste Collection Center at the Transfer Station accepts these unbroken fluorescent tubes/bulb/lamps. Please call (712) 580-7270 for an appointment.

Oil, Batteries, Tires, Paint, Etc.: 

The RCC at the City of Spencer Transfer Station (located at 3101 W. 18th St.) accepts vehicle batteries, oil or oil filters. There is no charge for residents. Batteries picked up at curbside are $6 each. Stickers may be purchased for curbside pickup at Spencer City Hall, 418 Second Ave. West.

Rechargeable and button batteries may be dropped off at the Household Hazardous Waste Collection Center at the Transfer Station

Oil, Filters and Vehicle Batteries.:

The Household Hazardous Waste Collection Center at the Transfer Station accepts oil, oil filters and batteries. Hours of operation of the facility (located at 401 10th Ave. S.E.) are 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., Monday through Friday.

The following businesses will accept the specific items during the hours listed.

Dyno Oil: Oil, no filters, no batteries
216 E. Milwaukee, 262-2921
M-F, 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.

H & N Chevrolet: Oil, oil filters, no batteries
713 Grand Ave., 262-3230
M-F, 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.; Saturday, 8 a.m. to noon

Vanderhaags: Oil, no filters, no batteries
3809 Fourth Ave. W., 262-7000
M-F, 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.; Saturday, 8 a.m. to noon

Tires:

There is a charge on all tires.

For those tires delivered to the Transfer Station (located at 3101 W. 18th St.) the following charges apply:

  • $2.00 per car tire
  • $5.00 per small truck/17.5-19.5" tire
  • $9.00 per large truck/semi tire
  • $35.00 per extra large tire
  • $2.00 extra charge for tires with rims

Those delivering tires are to stop at the main building at the Transfer Station to pay for the tires.

Tires which are left at curbside cost:

  • $3.00 per car tire
  • $6.00 small truck/17.5-19.5" tire
  • $9.75 per large truck/semi tire
  • $40.00 per extra large tire
  • $2.25 extra charge for tires with rims

These tires require the appropriate amount of stickers on each tire to be picked up. Please call 580-7270 to get placed on the pickup list. Stickers may be purchased at City Hall, Hy-Vee and Spencer Municipal Utilities.

Paint and Paint Cans:

Take paint to the the Household Hazardous Waste Collection Center at the Transfer Station. Empty paint cans may be disposed of with your garbage as long as the lid is removed and the can has been allowed to dry out. Here's a tip: Mix leftover paint with kitty litter or sawdust; or, spread on plastic to dry. Another option: do you know anyone who could use your leftover paint?)

Glass:

Glass is not to be included in your weekly recycling. Colored and clear glass can be taken to the Transfer Station.

Residential medical waste:

Residential medical waste (Please dispose of them with great care. This includes needles, syringes, scalpels, urine sample bottles, donated blood bottles.) FREE Sharps containers may be obtained from City Hall by Spencer residents. This is provided to ensure workers' safety.

Hazardous Materials:

Household hazardous materials can be taken to the Household Hazardous Waste Collection center. Questions call (712) 580-7277.

Rigid plastics:

Rigid plastics such as those used in some toys and many plastic kitchen & bathroom glasses are NOT recyclable in our area.

Grass/leaves/brush disposal:

Grass, leaves and brush will be picked up on the West side of town on Thursdays and the East side of Spencer on Fridays. Grass and leaves require a $.75 sticker on each bag. (Please place the sticker in a visible location for the driver to see.) Brush must be limited to 2-feet around and cut in 4-feet lengths (maximum.) Each bundle requires a $.75 sticker. Stickers may be purchased at City Hall, Hy-Vee and Spencer Municipal Utilities.

Yard waste may be taken to the Grass and Leaf Site located north of W. 18th St. and 18th Ave. West. Please follow the signs upon entering the site.

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