A Look At 30 Things That You Should Never Throw In Your Regular Trash Can

We often dump whatever item we consider “waste” in the garbage bin, without giving any second thoughts if it really belongs there. But the thing is, not every item belongs in the dumpster, and actually needs to be processed before it can be released as “waste” to ensure minimal damage to the environment. E-waste such as old phones, batteries, computer components shouldn’t be discarded in the regular garbage can. Instead, they need to be handed over to the nearest recycling authority for e-waste. Same goes for medical waste as well – it needs to be handled properly before it can be safely disposed of into the environment.

In this article, we have compiled a list of such items that shouldn’t be thrown in the dumpster. We have also added how to take care of them. Without further ado, lets jump straight into the article!


Rechargeable Batteries

It’s very important to check exactly what type of battery you’re throwing in your dustbin. Depending on which country’s citizen you are, you are supposed to send these batteries to relevant facilities for the batteries to be disposed safely. If, for instance, you’re throwing rechargeable batteries, they not only contain cadmium-nickel, but also lead acid that can be hazardous to people, animals and environment as a whole. On the other hand, regular alkaline batteries contain manganese and zinc-carbon, and can be safely disposed in the dumpsters without any risk of environmental degradation. So, the next time you get up to throw away some batteries, check their type and then dispose them, accordingly.



Mercury Thermometers

We all know that mercury isn’t safe. This is precisely why you shouldn’t just throw away the mercury thermometers in the dustbin, as they can cause severe environmental damage. Instead, the EPA recommends that you bring your mercury thermometers to a hazardous waste collection facility or wait for the authorities to announce a waste collection day to send them for the best disposal.



Fluorescent Bulbs

Fluorescent bulbs contain mercury – a metal that is extremely hazardous for living beings and environment. Therefore, you shouldn’t throw away your fluorescent bulbs out in the open. Instead, you can safely surrender them at the local waste collection facility and the professionals will dispose of the waste in the most proper and environment-friendly manner.




Depending upon the type of paint we’re talking about here, it also needs to be safely disposed of. For instance, latex-based paints are harmful and should only be sent to the nearest waste drop-off facilities, which you can locate using Earth911. On the other hand, small quantities of oil-based paints or paint items can be safely disposed of in the regular trash can. This is because small amounts of oil-based paints can find an absorbent and get absorbed in it. However, this isn’t the case if you are looking at a large amount of oil-based paint. It can be harmful for the environment, and should be disposed of only by professionals in a safe way.



Motor Oil

Like all fuels we come across, motor oil is flammable as well. It is, therefore, quite hazardous and shouldn’t be thrown in the garbage bin. If you want to throw away motor oil, you can either give it to the local hazardous waste collection facility, or to the local mechanic shop. Car mechanics can put the motor oil to best use, so you don’t have to worry about it being harmful to the environment, or living beings.