The Village is excited to be at the forefront of recycling and hopes that all residents will be willing to participate in this community-wide program.
- Village of Gurnee Solid Waste & Recycling Collection Guide  (PDF, 8 pages, 4.09MB)
- Recycle First, Trash Last Flyer  (English) (PDF, 1 page, 1.49MB)
- Recycle First, Trash Last Flyer  (Spanish) (PDF, 1 page, 933KB)
Village Recycling Program
Waste Management has provided every single-family home in the Village with a 64-gallon wheeled recycling cart and now offers residents the option of upgrading to a 96-gallon cart at no extra charge! The carts allow residents to place more recycling at the curb for collection. Due to space limitations, those residents living in townhouses will use an 18-gallon yellow recycling bin.
The 64- and 96-gallon carts take up about the same floor space as the yellow bin but hold much more material due to their height. In addition, all recyclable materials can be placed in the container without the hassle of sorting or separating. Waste Management will sort the material at a processing facility after collection. The carts do not have to be put out for collection every week. Only place the cart at the curb when it is full. Placing the container out only when full will help to improve the efficiency of Waste Management's collection services.
General Directions: Place the recycling cart at the curb, with the handles facing the house. Keep the cart approximately three (3) feet away from the garbage cart to allow easy access by the refuse drivers.
Please visit the Refuse Collection page  for current recycling rates.
Participating in the Village's Recycling Program
The Village's recycling program accepts paper, cardboard, glass, cans, and plastics. Please clean all containers before placing them at the curb, as contaminated materials cannot be recycled.
Participants are provided with a recycling bin or cart by Waste Management. On your regular garbage pick up day, place the bin or cart on the curb or shoulder. Your recyclables are picked up by a separate truck. Please pack items in your recycling bin so they do not blow away in the wind. Place heavier items on top of newspapers and light plastics.
Participation in curbside recycling has been excellent. The recycling program has reduced landfill waste by nearly one-quarter, taking in more than 3,500 tons of materials over the first three years. Approximately 80% of Village residents actively recycle on a regular basis. The average household diverts 63 pounds of recyclable materials from landfills monthly. According to the Solid Waste Agency of Lake County, the Village's participation rate is one of the highest in the area.
Accepted Materials: All clean and empty aluminum cans; foil and foil pans; steel and tin cans; spray cans and paint cans; kitchen pots, pans, and trays; kitchen pots, pans, and trays; utensils. Waste Management can accept caps, lids, pull tabs, and labels on the container. Please be sure metals are clean.
Not accepted: Any tanks (propane or helium); electronics; batteries; needles and syringes; hangers; wire; ammunition; flares or materials containing other combustible liquids.
Accepted Materials: All clean and empty plastic household containers or bottles; cups; clamshell style containers; laundry baskets; hangers; buckets; kitty litter tubs; plant pots; non-electronic toys; non-inflatable pools.
Not Accepted: Styrofoam; plastic bags; plastic wrap; plastic utensils; and garden hoses.
Note: Plastic bags and wrap, except frozen food and bio-based bags, can be recycled through participating grocery or retail stores. Ask your store for details.
Accepted Materials: Most paper products free of food residue or wax-coating including scrap paper; office paper; cardboard; books; newspaper; paper cartons (such as juice); wrapping paper.
Note: Shredded paper must be bagged and cardboard boxes cut down to pieces no larger than 3'x3'.
Not Accepted: Corrugated cardboard with food residue or wax coating; paper towels, napkins, facial tissue; photos; laminated paper or paper coated with wax or foil.
Accepted Materials: All clean and empty bottles and jars of any color.
Note: Caps and lids must be removed from glass containers.
Not Accepted: Light bulbs; drink glasses; ceramics; bakeware; mirrors; ornamental glass; window glass; auto glass
Accepted Materials: Televisions; monitors; computers (including tablets); keyboards; facsimile machines; portable digital music players; video game consoles; telephones (including cellular); stereos; cameras; shredders; CDs; holiday lights; microwaves and other small household appliances; alkaline batteries; rechargeable and non-rechargeable batteries.
Note: Electronics collection events happen year-round throughout Lake County. Visit www.swalco.org  for details.
Not Accepted: Any type of "white good" including air conditioners; dehumidifiers and other large household appliances; broken glass; lead acid batteries; fluorescent light bulbs; any type of packaging material.
Accepted Materials: Aerosol products; antifreeze; drain cleaners; fertilizers; fluorescent lights and CFLs; garden/lawn chemicals; gasoline; household cleaners; insecticides; oil-based paint; pool chemicals; personal care products (cosmetics, etc.); solvents.
Note: Household chemical waste collection events happen year-round. Visit www.swalco.org  for details.
Not Accepted: Any type of "white good" including air conditioners, dehumidifiers, and other large household appliances; broken glass; lead acid batteries; fluorescent light bulbs; any type of packaging material.
Every so often the Solid Waste Agency of Lake County likes to remind residents of proper recyclable preparation. There is always confusion on preparation guidelines and the system continually changes. Please read the following:
- Recycling bins should be placed at the end of the driveway opposite your refuse container. This is because the swing arm that picks up the garbage container will sometimes dump the recycling container when picking up or setting down the garbage cart. Waste Management asks that recycling bins be at least 3 feet from the refuse container.
- Paper products should be placed in a PAPER bag and then placed into the bin. PLASTIC BAGS ARE NOT COLLECTED FOR RECYCLING. This allows the driver to grab the bag and place it in the proper receptacle in the truck. All paper products are commingled (mixed) together. Any paper product that has not contacted food, beverage or bodily functions is acceptable. If the weather is bad (rain or rain impending) hold your paper products till next time. Wet paper is sometimes unmarketable.
- Cardboard must be cut down to 2 foot by 2 foot sections and should be bundled with string (if you have a quantity). This is because of space constraints on the collection vehicle (related to the dump hopper space).
- Containers should be rinsed and placed loose in the bin. Containers are collected in a commingled fashion (mixed). Rigid Containers accepted include glass bottles and jars, cans, and plastics numbered 1(PETE), 2(HDPE), 3(PVC), 4(LDPE), and 5(PP). Codes are generally found on the bottom of the container. PLASTIC BAGS ARE NOT RECYCLABLE.
- Generally, any container that is rigid, and contained a consumer product, is recyclable. Exceptions are: Polystyrene products (Styrofoam packaging, meat trays, cups); plastic bags; containers that held automotive fluids such as motor oil; pesticide/poison or containers containing chemical products such as drain cleaner. These items are not recyclable. Bags will either be number 2(HDPE) or number 4(LDPE), and containers holding poisons or household chemicals may be made of metal, glass or any type of plastic. Please throw these away.
- Place Address on your bin. It is a good idea to write your address on your bin. This will improve the odds that your bin will be returned after it blows away on one of our windy days.
- Extra bins: There is nothing special about a recycling bin. Any container can be used as long as it is identifiable as a container holding recyclables. Many people will purchase similar containers at Walmart and write the word RECYCLING on the side with indelible marker. Extra bins can also be obtained from Waste Management at 395-2020. There is a charge for additional bins.
Want to get rid of an old fridge or freezer?
If you’ve got an older, working second refrigerator or freezer keeping your soft drinks or ice cream cold – it’s probably costing you more money than you think. ENERGY STAR qualified refrigerators use at least 20 percent less energy than required by current federal standards and 40 percent less energy than the conventional models sold in 2001. So that old fridge could be costing you more than a $150 per year!
With ComEd’s Smart Ideas for Your Home Program you can get a $25 cash incentive to turn in your working second refrigerator of freezer. ComEd is working with JACO Environmental, to pick up your refrigerator or freezer for free and recycle it in an environmentally responsible way.