Off Campus

How to Recycle from Off Campus

  • Use the city's black recycling buckets or any other durable container clearly identified with the city's recycling logo sticker (available free at 85 South Main St.)
  • Separate your recyclables. Use three different bins for glass, plastic, and metal. Stack paper and put it in a brown bag or tie it with string.
  • Garbage day=recycling day. Recycling collection is done by the city and takes place on the same day as your trash collection. Call the Public Works Department to find out your street's pickup day (440-775-7218). 
  • Put your recycled materials on the curb the night before pickup. No later than 6 a.m. on collection day, no earlier than noon on the previous day.
  • Be nice to the people who pick up your recycling.
    • Rinse out all food waste
    • Flatten all cardboard and remove all packing materials
    • Don't ever include broken glass

If you have questions about recycling in Oberlin that we don't answer on this page, here are some helpful links:
City of Oberlin Collection Center Webpage
PDF with recycling guidelines for Oberlin
Recycling info for Lorain County

If you still have questions, contact Lori Sprosty, the city's recycling coordinator at 440-935-0096


Remove lids, rinse containers, and flatten them when possible.

City Recycling

  • The City of Oberlin now recycles plastics #1 through #7
  • Cartons - refrigerated & shelf-stable such as milk, juice, and broth cartons are recyclable and can be mixed in with plastics.

Do NOT Recycle in City bins

  • plastic bags, no matter what the number (but you can reuse them; or take them to Target, and other grocery stores to be recycled)
  • containers that were used for motor oil, antifreeze, or pesticides
  • plastics that do not have a triangle around a number between 1 and 7, or unlabeled plastics (these can be recycled in other facilities)


Rinse cans and flatten them when possible.

Do Recycle in City Bins

  • aluminum
  • tin
  • bi-metal

Do NOT Recycle in City bins

  • paint cans
  • aerosol cans
  • aluminum foil


Flatten boxes and remove all packing materials. Tie or bind together, and keep dry until pickup (otherwise it is very unpleasant for the people who pick it up). It is okay to leave in staples and packing tape.

Do Recycle in City bins

  • Corrugated cardboard, which has a ribbed section sandwiched between two layers of paper.

Do NOT Recycle in City bins

  • waxed or oily corrugated cardboard (if you have this, bring it to a co-op)
  • cardboard covered in food waste (like greasy pizza boxes - these CANNOT be recycled AT ALL)


Remove lids and neck rings, and rinse out all food waste.

Do Recycle

  • glass bottles and jars of any color

Do NOT Recycle

  • CFL light bulbs
  • mirrors
  • windowpanes
  • dishes
  • any broken glass (for safety reasons)


Bundle all paper with string, or place stacks in brown paper grocery bags. Keep paper dry until pickup.

Do Recycle

  • newspaper
  • phone books
  • office paper
  • magazines / catalogs
  • junk mail
  • boxboard (cereal, max-n-cheese, crackers, frozen food boxes, etc.); Note: NOT accepted in Paper Retriever Bins 

You can also bring all paper to an Abitibi Paper Retriever dumpster. You can find these green-and-yellow dumpsters on campus behind Hales and the Facilities building, and off campus behind the Oberlin News Tribune or at any public school. Abitibi pays schools and towns for the paper they collect, so you can help the college or the town by recycling!


The city of Oberlin encourages the home composting of yard and food wastes. An informational brochure on starting your own compost pile is available by calling the Public Works Department at 775-7218. Also, students: check with members of the nearest co-op to see if you can add to their compost pile.

Do Compost

  • vegetable and fruit scraps
  • coffee grounds
  • eggshells
  • tea bags
  • yard waste

Do NOT Compost

  • meat, fish, bones
  • fatty foods (like cheese, butter, oil)
  • animal waste
  • diseased or insect-infested plants
  • weeds with mature seeds

Lorain Country SWMD Collection Center

Located at 540 South Abbe Road in Elyria (10 minutes away), residents and college students (must show college ID) in Lorain country can drop off any household hazardous waste, e-scrap, fluorescent lamps & ballasts, CFLs, curbside recycling, scrap tires, and much more at this one stop, drive-thru collection center.

Do Recycle

  • corrosives (acids, batteries, etc.)
  • flammables (gasoline, paint, propane, etc.)
  • reactives (pesticides, chlorine, etc.)
  • toxics (poisons, mercury, antifreeze, etc.)

Do NOT Recycle

  • ammunition
  • medical waste
  • tires
  • appliances

Want more information?

Can't find what you're looking for? Check out our More Resources page for other things you can recycle

Check out these helpful links for information on the web.