5 Ways to Find Recycling Plant Locations in the US

Dan Price Updated 07-02-2020

As we continue to drain the planet’s finite natural resources, recycling as much as possible is more important than ever. Kitchen trash, old electronics, or discarded furniture… it doesn’t matter. Recycling is always a better solution than chucking it all in a landfill or incinerator.


But how do you know where to take all your old stuff? How can you find recycling locations close to your home or office? Keep reading to learn about how to discover nearby recycling drop off locations.

1. Earth911

earth911 recycling

Earth911 wants to save the planet with the help of its large community. Naturally, recycling forms a large part of that.

Earth911 makes it easy to find a recycling plant that caters to your specific needs and is close to you. The plants are subdivided according to the kind of trash they handle. You will find plants that deal that automotive parts, batteries, construction waste, electronics, garden waste, glass, hazardous materials, household trash, metals, paint, paper, and plastics.

You can even search for your specific type of waste if it does not fit into one of the headline categories.


In total, more than 350 different types of waste materials have been classified. The directory itself contains in excess of 100,000 recycling plants across the United States.

The site also offers a phone service. Just dial 1-800-CLEANUP and enter your ZIP code, and an automated voice will provide a list of the most suitable recycling centers near your location.

In addition to the Earth911 recycling search and location directory, the site also has an extensive blog about the topic. It is packed with useful tips on how to reduce your waste, how to recycle in the most appropriate way, and how to engage your community around the topics of recycling and reuse.

Other useful features on Earth911’s homepage include quizzes to help you brush up on your recycling and eco knowledge, a regular podcast, and industry news.


2. ENF Recycling

enf recycling list

The Earth911 website might be the most well-known (and arguably, the most comprehensive) resource for people who need to find recycling drop off locations near their home in the US, but it is not the only option. In the rest of the article, we’re going to introduce you to some of the top alternatives to Earth911. First up, ENF Recycling.

ENF Recycling is the world’s largest directory of recycling companies, recycling machines, and recycling services. It doesn’t have as many US listings as the Earth911 website; however, it has a global directory that Earth911 lacks.

Countries with recycling plants on ENF Recycling include Austria, Czech Republic, France, the UK, Germany, Spain, Russia, Switzerland, Italy, India, Japan, China, Singapore, Brazil, Canada, Mexico, Australia, and many more.


The site’s recycling plants are divided into five main categories for easy navigation. They are Plastic, Metal, Glass, Paper, and Organic. Each category is further subdivided into the type of machine that each plant offers. You’ll see choices such as shredder, dry separator, hard plastics recycling, extruders, balers, and so on.

If you dig into each individual plant’s listing, you will find an address, emails, contact numbers, a map, and other useful snippets of information.

3. Vinyl Institute

vinyl institute recycle directory

Another site that provides a directory of recycling locations is Vinyl Institute. In theory, it covers all of North America, but the information is heavily skewed towards the United States. There are just a handful of listings for Canada.


The information for each listing is not as extensive as on Earth911 or ENF Recycling. You will not find any categories, and each company only has an address and phone number.

4. RecycleNation

recyclenation recycling map

RecycleNation is a recycling and green living-focused website. In addition to the listings, it also has a blog and an iPhone app.

The company has agreements with several large retailers, recycling location aggregators, and private entities, all of which combine to help make RecycleNation one of the most comprehensive ways to find recycling centers near your location.

It is easy to find the listings you need, thanks to the site’s search feature. Just enter the type of material that you want to recycle along with your ZIP code, and you will be shown a list of all the nearby locations that meet your criteria.

Some examples of recent blog posts on the site include “5 Ways to Recycle Old Board Games,” “5 Easy Tips for Sustainable Spring Cleaning,” and “2 Ways to Recycle Your Old Jeans.”

5. Local Recycling Listings

Many metropolitan areas have their own local resources available on the web. They are more likely to list smaller recycling drop off locations that might not have been picked up by the larger directories.

If you still need further information, you could approach your local authority directly. It will be able to tell you all the officially sanctioned recycling locations in the area.

Make sure a recycling location is sanctioned. Fake recycling scams are not uncommon as companies seek to strip the unwanted goods of any parts with a sell-on value.

And remember, all states have slightly different laws about how you should and should not recycle. Thankfully, the team at RecycleNation has put together a great list that links to each state’s official policies.

Learn More About Recycling

If you’re not already recycling, we’d urge you to strongly consider doing so. As these directories prove, it’s highly likely that you’ll have some facilities nearby, even if your local authority is not organizing specific recycling trash collection. If your condo or apartment complex does not recycle, you could try reaching out to the accommodation’s management team.

And remember, some of the most important items to recycle correctly are your old electronics.

They contain a lot of metals that are both expensive to extract from the earth and harmful for the environment—the truth about e-waste may surprise you. Check out our list of the best ways to recycle old electronics 7 Things You Can Do to Recycle Old Electronic Devices We all have them in a drawer or on a shelf somewhere; outdated or broken electronic devices. Are they even good for anything now? Surprisingly, they can be quite valuable! Read More if you would like to learn more.

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  1. rankinmarvin
    October 27, 2009 at 2:42 pm

    I am looking for a large site that takes multiple items for recycling around are close to mobile Alabama.One that will take commonly are daily used material such as plastics,cans,rubber,paper.Plus monitors,televisions,microwaves.