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City of Hamilton

Garbage and Recycling - Household Hazardous Waste


Community Recycling Centres

27 Olympic Drive, Dundas (map)

37 Kilbride Road, Hamilton mountain (map)
(includes the Reuse Store)

460 Kenora Avenue, east Hamilton (map)


Many products that you use every day like household cleaners, batteries and personal care products are hazardous. To know what is hazardous look for common warning symbols such as corrosive, poisonous, explosive and flammable.

Hazardous waste should never be put into the garbage or poured down drains or storm sewers. Household hazardous waste is not picked up at the curb. Hazardous waste should be taken to a Community Recycling Centre.

Take Charge! Recycle your used batteries and cell phones

Drop off your used household batteries (single-use and rechargeable) and old cell phones for recycling at the closest Community Recycling Centre or Municipal Service Centre for recycling.

Rechargeable batteries don't go in the garbage when they no longer hold a charge. Wrap each individual rechargeable battery in a plastic bag or cover both battery ends with tape to make sure that the ends do not touch and spark a fire. Store all batteries in a cool, dry place before you bring them in for recycling.

There are also stores that take batteries. To find a store close to you visit

Important Information

Here are some important things you need to know about getting rid of your household hazardous waste:

  • You must live in Hamilton to drop off household hazardous waste at a Community Recycling Centre.
  • There is no charge to drop off household hazardous waste.
  • Needles and syringes must be placed in a plastic or metal container with a lid such as an empty detergent bottle or metal coffee can. You can also get a container for needles and syringes at most pharmacies.

Each time you visit you can bring a maximum of:

  • 40 kilograms (or 90 pounds) of hazardous waste.
  • 40 litres or (10 gallons) of liquid hazardous waste.
  • Eight fluorescent tubes.
  • One thermostat that has mercury in it.

Please note:

  • Needles and syringes in glass containers will not be accepted.
  • Empty containers are not accepted. Containers must have leftover hazardous waste in them.
  • Commercial, industrial and institutional properties may not drop off household hazardous waste.
  • Smoke/carbon monoxide alarms will not be accepted. Take the batteries out and place the alarm in the garbage. Take the batteries to a Community Recycling Centre.

Paint, stain and varnish cans

  • Empty metal paint cans and lids go in your blue box with the rest of your bottles, cans and jars.
  • Empty plastic paint buckets and lids go in the garbage.
  • Empty spray paint cans go in your blue box with the rest of your bottles, cans and jars. The lids go in the garbage.

Leftover exterior paint. Help victims of grafitti by dropping off your leftover exterior paint to a CRC.

Reuse Shed:
Each of the City's Community Recycling Centres has a "reuse" shed that we stock with cans of paint we think can be reused. The sheds are open from spring to fall. You can take home up to two cans of paint for free!

There is some household hazardous waste around your home that you can't take to a Community Recycling Centre:

  • Asbestos
  • Biohazardous waste / biochemical wastes (can be taken to a company listed in the Yellow Pages).
  • Ammunition, explosives or fireworks (are best handled by contacting the police).
  • Radioactive waste (must be called in to Atomic Energy of Canada Limited).

Reporting spills & illegal dumping

Illegal dumping of hazardous waste should be reported to the Ministry of Environment (MOE) at:

  • MOE Pollution Hotline 1-866-MOE-TIPS (1-866-663-8477)

Spills of hzardous waste should be be reported to:

  • MOE Spills Action Center 1-800-268-6060
  • City of Hamilton Spills Reporting Line 905-540-5188

Both of these lines are available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. When reporting, note the date, time, location of the spill, what was spolled and the approximate quantity (if known) and any other details you can make note of.

Less toxic alternatives

Be sure to take proper precautions when handling and using the things listed below.

Commercial Product Less Toxic Alternative
Bleach Borax (available in the detergent section of most grocery stores)
Dish detergent grease cutter 1/2 cup baking soda and lemon juice
Drain cleaner Plunger followed by 1/2 cup baking soda, 1/2 cup vinegar and 2 liters of boiling water
General household cleaner (abrasive) Baking soda
Grease remover Borax on a damp cloth
Ink spot remover Cold water, 1 tablespoon of cream of tartar and 1 tablespoon of lemon juice
Linoleum floor cleaner 1 cup of white vinegar and 2 liters of water
Mildew remover Equal parts vinegar and salt
Oven cleaner 2 tablespoons of liquid soap, 2 teaspoons of Borax and warm water
Spot remover Club soda, lemon juice and salt
Toilet bowl cleaner Paste of Borax and lemon juice
Tub and tile cleaner 1/4 cup of baking soda, 1/2 cup of white vinegar and warm water
Window cleaner 2 tablespoons of vinegar in 1 liter warm water