Are you looking to safely discard your burnt out bulbs? Read below to find out how to properly dispose of standard bulbs, CFLs, and LEDs:
- CFLs (compact fluorescent light bulbs) contain a very small amount of mercury and therefore need to be properly disposed of in order to protect public health and the environment. With LEDs, you don’t have to worry about mercury, but they do contain nickel, some lead, and even trace amounts of arsenic, so proper disposal is important for these as well. Although light bulb recycling is not mandated by WI law, the recycling of these bulbs does benefit the environment since broken bulbs that end up in the landfill can release harmful chemicals into the ground and potentially pollute water sources.
- Although standard halogen and incandescent bulbs do not contain these same chemicals, it’s still a good idea to recycle them to help cut down on what ends up in the landfill. However, if you are going to dispose of them with your regular trash, we recommend wrapping them in newspaper or putting them in their original packaging to prevent them from shattering when you throw them out.
As of May 2016, Cedarburg Light & Water, in partnership with Beyer’s True Value in Cedarburg, now offers a bulb recycling program for all small and regular sized bulbs (bulbs must be whole and intact – broken materials are not acceptable). Just bring them in to Beyer’s, put them in the designated bulb recycling pail, and we’ll do the rest. Additionally, both Home Depot and Ace Hardware in Grafton accept CFLs for recycling.
Thanks for doing your part in keeping our community clean and free of contaminants!
You can also visit Earth911 to find a recycling center closest to you.