There are products in our homes that are highly toxic and extremely hazardous to the environment. These items cannot be recycled or disposed of in the landfill due to the risk of contamination of our drinking water, soil and air. There are options for the proper disposal or recycling of these materials. To find out what is considered hazardous materials, download “The Hawai’i Guide to Alternatives & Disposal of Household Hazardous Waste,” published by the State of Hawai’i Dept. of Health. The State of Hawai‘i Dept of Health also has an Office of Hazard Evaluation & Emergency Response which lists various fact sheets on managing hazardous substances, pollutants or contaminants. For more information on electronic waste see our electronic waste page.
For more information on proper disposal of hazardous waste from businesses (including farms), government agencies & non-profits please visit our Business Resources page. Additional information is available at the State of Hawai‘i DOH Hazardous Waste Section website, click for a listing of Hazardous Materials Management companies (it is the “Haulers & Recyclers List” or the “Permitted Used Oil Transporters/Processors” list about one third down the page). For fact sheets on disposal or clean ups of hazardous substances, pollutants or contaminants visit the State of Hawai‘i Department of Health Office of Hazard Evaluation & Emergency Response.
Businesses, Government agencies, non-profits & Residents
Various businesses also offer collections of select hazardous materials in limited quantities:
- AKW Environmental – various hazardous materials, 430-2339
- Atlas Recycling – lead-acid (automotive, solar system, UPS) batteries; scrap value ($0.08/pound) paid to you; 74-5600 Alapa St (Kona), 64-1004 Mamalahoa Hwy (Waimea) & 30 Maka‘ala St (Hilo).
- Big Island Scrap Metal – automotive batteries; 16-168 Kalara St. (Kea‘au), 854-4530; 74-589 Honokōhau St. (Kailua-Kona), 854-4530 Closed until further notice. Call for info.
- DALECO – automotive batteries; 74-5546C Kaiwi St., Kailua-Kona, call 329-4605; FREE (disposal & pick up in service area)
- Home Depot – rechargeable power tool batteries, compact fluorescent light bulbs (CFLs). FREE (Next to the Customer Service Counter)
- Interstate Batteries of Hawai‘i – Lead-acid and deep cycle batteries, including solar batteries and uninterruptible power supply batteries (UPS) – scrap value ($0.15/pound) paid to you; Lithium ion & other types of batteries call for quote; If a large quantity generator would like to request pick-up service ($.15 – $.20/lb transport/palletizing fee) – call 326-9050 (73-4097 B Hulikoa St – Kona) & 934-7256 (194 Wiwoole St – Hilo)
- Mr. K’s Recycle & Redemption – automotive batteries – scrap value (per pound rate varies, call for current rate) paid to you; 815 Kino‘ole St., Hilo; 969-1222.
- Napa Auto Parts – automotive batteries; 64-1019 Mamalahoa Hwy, Waimea, call 885-6000; fee
- O’Reilly Auto Parts – automotive batteries; 2100 Kanoelehua St (Hilo) and 74-5586 Palani Rd (Kona); may give store credit for recycled battery.
- Pāhoa Battery & Propane – automotive batteries; 2660 Kea‘au-Pāhoa Rd., Pāhoa, call 965-9499; fee
- HolidayLEDs.com – holiday lights recycling mail-in program. Mail in your string of old holiday lights and receive a coupon for discounts at HolidayLEDs.com.
- Or how about becoming a rechargeable battery drop-off location, sign up at the Rechargeable Battery Recycling Corporation’s Call2Recycle website.
Household Hazardous Waste Collections
For self-hauled waste from residential households only.
- Hilo Recycling & Transfer Station: 1st Saturday of June & December, 7:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m.
- Kailua-Kona (Kealakehe) Recycling & Transfer Station: 2nd Saturday of June & December, 7:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m.
- Pāhoa Recycling & Transfer Station: Sunday, March 6th, 2016, 8:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m.
- Waimea Recycling & Transfer Station: Saturday, March 5th, 2016, 8:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m.
Customers should pack their items in labeled spill-proof containers (preferably the original containers with label) and be careful when transporting them to the event. Do not mix items unless directed by the material’s label. When at the event please remain in your vehicle in line until authorized personnel come to unload your vehicle. For your safety and the safety of those around you please do not walk your hazardous materials over to the authorized personnel in the restricted area, this precaution is to prevent spillage and ensure fairness to those already waiting in line. Mahalo for your kōkua.
If you cannot make it to one of our events or if you have something that is not acceptable at our events there are private companies that can service your needs for a fee. Please refer to the Business, Government Agency and Non-Profit section above for immediate disposal options.
- Automotive fluids (including antifreeze/engine coolant, used motor oil, gasoline)
- corrosives (acids & bases)
- all types of batteries
- unbroken fluorescent lights (tubes & CFLs) and chemical ballasts. Instructions on how to safely clean up broken fluorescent bulbs.
- mercury thermometers
- unused or outdated prescription medications (no controlled substances or sharps & needles)
- toxic aerosol canisters
- household compressed gas cylinders (e.g. propane. Commercial quantities (> 5 gallons) or types of gas not accepted. Empty cylinders can go to Scrap Metal)
- oil-based paint & stains. liquid lead-based paints.
- toxic garden supplies (herbicides & pesticides)
- household poisons (e.g. insecticides, bug spray)
- photoelectric smoke detectors (must clearly state “photoelectric” (only) type detector. “ionization” or combination with “ionization” type detector not accepted.)
- miscellaneous hazardous or toxic household products
What’s NOT Accepted:
- Business or Farm (including unwanted farm pesticides) waste are prohibited by law
- Government Agency or Non-profit group generated waste are prohibited (see Business Resources)
- electronic waste (computers, TVs, printers, printer cartridges & etc.), for disposal options see our e-waste page.
- latex paint and base (These items will be collected for reuse by Recycle Hawai‘i at the Hilo, Kona & Waimea HHW Events; if the paint is junk/rusty solidify it by letting it completely dry out to a solid and dispose in regular trash.)
- used cooking oil (solidify or absorb and dispose with trash or see our food/organics waste page – freezing doesn’t count as solidification)
- explosives, ammunition or fireworks. Unwanted ammunition can be safely disposed of through the Police Department; call the non-emergency police contact number, 935-3311, and describe the ammunition you need to dispose.
- flares and water reactive materials
- biological or infectious waste (Proper Disposal of Home Healthcare Waste & Safe Syringe Disposal Options)
- unused sharps/syringes (check online for retailers that offer mail-back options)
- controlled substances (e.g. illegal drugs or highly controlled/restricted medications) – for take-back options of unused legal medications go to the DEA National Drug Take-Back Initiative or the Go-to-Guide for Safe Drug Take-Back.
- radioactive & shock sensitive materials
- fire extinguishers & ionization smoke detectors (clearly states “ionization” or “americium 241” sensor type, not accepted – return to manufacturer) (info sheet)
- detergents, household soaps, household cleaners
- non-hazardous material
For information on proper disposal of other hazardous materials not listed above, contact the County HazMat Infoline at 961-8554 or Greg Perry, with EnviroServices at (808) 330-1604. For immediate disposal options (for a fee) please refer to the Business, Government Agency and Non-Profit section above for hazmat company listing.