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Guide to recycling in San Antonio

Reduce, reuse, recycle.


Solid Waste Management is San Antonio’s trash pick-up provider.

Photo by Clem Spalding

You see them everywhere. You know, those brightly-colored, two-wheeled cans around San Antonio? As the saying goes, “to go green, is to go blue.”

If you take pride in recycling or want to learn more, we’re breaking it down so you can make sure you’re recycling in the most effective way possible.

Do I need to sort my recyclables?

Most recycling systems in the US have gone single-stream, including San Antonio. That means your recyclables can go in one bin. Use your recycle bin or one of the listed drop-off locations.

The do’s and don’ts of recycling

In addition to what you put in the bin, you should always be mindful of how you put it in there.

  • Do not place recyclables in containers. They go into the blue bin loose.
  • Flatten out all cardboard. I know you want to keep that pretty Apple box, but it needs to be recycled too.
  • Remove all lids, even plastic ones. Bottles marked 1-7 are all recyclable.
  • Never use your blue cart as overflow for trash. In the words of Egon from “Ghostbusters,” don’t cross the streams.

See the full list here.


Starting Thursday, Aug.1, Solid Waste Management will no longer accept plastic bags of any kind.

Photo by the City of San Antonio

Pro tip: H-E-B offers curbside recycling for loose plastic bags.

Thinking outside the blue bins

Recycling doesn’t stop at the blue bins — the city offers safe disposal services for paint, oil, hazardous waste, and batteries.

You can also join a local group like Compost Queens, which diverts food scraps from the landfill and returns them to local farms for fertilizer.

The holiday schedule

It’s always best to be safe than sorry, especially when it comes to trash pickup. With Independence Day nearly here, keep an eye on the city’s holiday schedule for trash collection.

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