Recycling in Lake County

1. Recycle at the Landfill Drop-Site, or at the two additional Drop Sites.
2. Curb-site recycle pick up options: Chaffee County Waste (residential), and Vail Honey Wagon (large event).

Lake County Landfill and Recycling Center | 1500 County Road 6, Leadville, CO

The following recyclables are accepted at the Lake County recycling center: 1-2 plastics and 3-7 plastics (separated),  aluminum, glass, all paper, paperboard (with cardboard), and cardboard..

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HOURS at the landfill recycling center


HOUSEHOLD HAZARDOUS WASTE  Starting August 8th, 2016, the Lake County Landfill will be accepting any used paint, oil or latex, stains and solvents for free, up to 10 gallons a day.

TIPPING FEES and items accepted year-round like motor oil, anti-freese, propane, tires et.

WHERE TO RECYCLE EVERYTHING (See below for hard-to-recycle items)

What can I recycle at the Lake County Recycling Center? Handout


  • Mixed Paper.  Including newspaper, mail, and office paper.
  • Paper-board (cereal boxes etc)  – put it in with card-board.
  • Cardboard (Please flatten all cardboard.  Egg cartons too.  If cardboard is too greasy please do not include it).
  • Glass.  All kinds.
  • Aluminum.  Including aluminum foil.
  • Metal and tin cans.
  • Plastics #1-7.  All yogurt containers.  Please separate #1 and 2s from #3-7s.  This helps the County get more money for their product.

What can’t I recycle:

  • plastic bags and film
  • styrofoam
  • chip bags and other very flimsy plastic-type containers
  • household batteries (take them to True Value)
  • milk cartons (paperboard/plastic mix)
  • tetrapacks (soymilk and other metal/paper/plastic combos)


Antifreeze – Antifreeze can be taken to the Lake County Landfill and Recycling Center for $1/gallon.

Appliances – TV’s and computers are NOT appliances, please see Computers & Electronics for information on these. Washers, dryers, refrigerators/freezers (associated fee), hot water heaters, dishwashers, trash compactors, and microwaves are accepted at the Lake County landfill for a $12 fee (residents). Any appliance that is approximately 80% metal can be recycled as scrap metal.

Asphalt – Accepted at the Lake County landfill and Recycling Center for $5/yeard, where it is crushed and re-used on County roads.

Batteries – Household batteries and electronic batteries can be taken for free, year-round, to True Value in Leadville.   Vehicle batteries are accepted at a $5 fee for recycling at the Lake County Landfill and Recycling Center.

Building Materials – Unfortunately, there aren’t many options for used building materials in good condition in our community. ReStores exist in surrounding communities that may accept building materials. Contact the Summit County Habitat ReStore located in Silverthorne 970 423 7445.

CDs – There is currently no good local solution.  Search for an online service that takes CDs back, like Green Disk.

Cell Phones – 

Christmas Trees – We currently have no available Christmas tree recycling. Want to see something in place where Christmas trees are chipped and then re-used? So do we. We are working on it.

Clothing – Not accepted at any of the Recycling Drop-off Centers. There are thrift and consignment shops that accept varying grades of clothes. Please contact the following for hours/details:  Community Threads – 504 Harrison, (719) 486-4000

Compact Fluorescent Bulbs (CFLs) – All fluorescent light bulbs including CFLs & tubes do contain a small amount of mercury & must be handled and recycled carefully. You can recycle CFL bulbs for FREE at True Value in Leadville.

Fluorescent Tubes -Fluorescent tubes also contain mercury and should be brought to a proper disposal facility.   True Value in Leadville also takes 2 foot tubes for free and charges $1.00 for 4-8 foot tubes.  Lowes in Silverthorne takes tubes up to 4 feet for free.

Summit County Resource Allocation Park (SCRAP), located at 639 Landfill Road, two miles north of Keystone, Colorado (approximately 45 minutes from Leadville), takes small and large tubes at a cost ($1.00 per tube for 8 footers, $.50 per tube for 4 footers).

Construction Wood – Not accepted locally. Accepted at the Summit County SCRAP. Must be separate loads for lower rates – raw dimensional lumber only – no creosoted, painted, stained or treated lumber in construction wood – no plywood or OSB. No trash or other construction debris. No metal hardware. Contaminated loads charged at loose trash rate, along with applicable surcharges and additional hauling fees. Slash and stumps must be separate loads for the lower rates (no dirt, rocks, or trash in load). Contact Summit County SCRAP for more info at 970-468-9263 x 0.

Electronics, computers, e-recycling – The Lake County Landfill and Recycling Center accept electronics for recycling.  A fee is attached to some electronics.  Laptops, cellphone, CPUS and digital cameras are free.  These items should NOT be dumped in the landfill as they contain toxic elements that are harmful to human and natural resources.  To view electronics pricing, click here.

Household Hazardous Waste

Ink-Jet and Toner Cartridges – Silver City Printing will accept most cartridges.  Here’s another instance where the manufacturer is the best choice for recycling these items. Many toner and ink cartridges (Dell and Hewlett Packard, for example) come with handy pre-paid shipping labels to send the old cartridges directly back to the manufacturer.  Office Max in Silverthorne offers a special program for HP, Lexmark, and Dell ink jet or toner cartridges for their Max Perks customers where you can get $3 back per cartridge (yes, you get the $3 back for recycling in the form of a gift card), up to 10 per week. They’ll also take Cannon, Brother, and Epson ink jet and toner cartridges back for free, but without the $3 reward.

iPods, iPhones, and other iThings – The Leadville True Value Hardware and the Lake County Recycling Center are now accepting ipods, iphones and cellular phones for free. Apple retail stores accept old iPods and such for free recycling, and you’ll even receive a 10% discount for a replacement. Since we don’t have an Apple retail store, you can also jump on the Apple website and request a free, pre-paid mailing label to ship your iThing back to them. This is truly the best option, because when the manufacturer is in charge of recycling, that manufacturer just might begin to make more recyclable and less toxic iThings. But, for convenience sake, you can also take them to the True Value in Leadville for recycling.

Mercury Thermometers and Switches – These are perhaps the nastiest of the little toxic things. As we know, mercury is a potent neurotoxin and should be handled with great care. Currently, you can take these materials to Summit County any day for disposal.  Up to 4 of these mercury containing devices for free at Summit County’s Household Hazardous Waste (HHW) program, located at the Summit County Resource Allocation Park (SCRAP), which is open Monday to Friday from 7:30am-3:30pm. Commercial businesses please call SCRAP 970-468-9263 x 0.

Oil – Oil can be taken to the Lake County Landfill for free up to 5 gallons. Over 5 gallons call for appointment and pricing.  Oil filters currently cannot be taken to the Lake County Landfill.

Paint – Paint can be taken to the Lake County Landfill for recycling starting August 8th, 2016.  Up to 10 gallons per day is accepted in its original container.

Pharmaceuticals – Take Pharmaceuticals to the Leadville City Hall Lock Box . Thank you City of Leadville!  The Safeway Pharmacy and Hospital will NOT take these back.  NEVER flush pharmaceuticals down the toilet. Flushing or trashing unused or unwanted medications can cause pollution of our lakes, streams, and water supplies!

Plastic Bags – Plastic bags are not accepted by the Lake County Landfill and Recycling Center anymore.  In Lake County they can no longer be recycled (other than the periodic box that shows up at Safeway).

Plastic Bottle Caps – Recycle them along with your plastic bottles. You don’t need to take them off and throw them away. They are accepted long with all #1-7 plastics.

Propane Tanks – To the Lake County Landfill and Recycling Center. Less than 25 lbs =$4, over 25 lbs= $16

Refrigerators/Freezers – These items can be taken to the Lake County Landfill and Recycling Center. A fee is charged for disposal recycling of refrigerators and freezers ($30/residential, $75/commercial) because the coolant must be removed by a certified technician. Coolant is a hazardous substance and should not be deposited in the landfill or anywhere else where it may potentially contaminate human and natural resources.

Scrap Metal – You can recycle scrap metal at the Lake County Landfill and Recycling Center. Green Wolf Recycling will pick up scrap metal from any local address for free.
The following are metal yards in Denver that do pay for scrap metal:
Rocky Mountain Recycling 303-288-6868
All Recycling 303-922-7722
Sims Metal Management 303-295-2911

Stains and Oil-Based Paints Stains and oil-based paints can be taken to the Lake County Landfill for recycling starting August 8th, 2016.  Up to 10 gallons per day is accepted in its original container.

Skis/Sports Equipment – Seasonal ski collection program available at Frisco and Breckenridge Drop-off Center, call for status of program (668-5703). Recycle Ski & Sport, 668-5150, accepts items for consignment. Place an ad or in the Swap for Charity section of the Herald Democrat or Leadville Today or post them for free on Lake County Freecycle.

Slash and Yard-Clippings – Lake County Landfill, first 2 yards no charge.

Styrofoam Packaging – Leadville’s B & B Shipping Store will accept packaging material in good condition – must be clean and dry. This includes bubble wrap and peanuts. B&B is located at 518 Harrison (719) 486-7373. Cardboard boxes are not accepted. Take them to the recycling drop site or center.

Televisions – See Computers and Electronics above.

Tires –  Tires are accepted at the Lake County Landfill for a fee.  Unless you find them in the woods as a good samaritan.  Then you can get a voucher from the County to drop them off for free.

Questions? Call us (719) 465-6164, or email


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