Recycling Other Materials
Hopewell Valley Green Team’s 2023 recycling flyer is available here (click to open).
In September 2019 the Mercer County Planning Department issued “Beyond The Bucket: A resource guide for recycling uncommon objects”; it was updated in September 2022. You may download it here (click to open) or by visiting the Mercer County website.
Steven Rinaldi of NJDEP’s Bureau of Sustainability has published a list of Reuse Organizations and Opportunities as a Google Document here.
For other materials not listed below, consult http://search.earth911.com/
Batteries – alkaline, rechargeable and sealed lead acid
Regular household alkaline batteries may be placed in your trash due to the fact that mercury levels have been significantly reduced and fall within DEP standards.
Rechargeable batteries should be recycled. You can take them to The Home Depot, Lowe’s and other retail stores like West Trenton Hardware (TrueValue affiliate) or Niece Lumber (Ace Hardware affiliate).
Sealed Lead Acid (SLA) batteries, such as the back-up battery in a Verizon FiOS control box, should also be recycled. They are accepted at The Home Depot.
✻ You can also buy a recycling kit for nearly all types of batteries at cirbasolutions.com
More information at https://www.call2recycle.org/locator
NJ Department of Environmental Protection publishes a helpful guide about batteries: click here to open (PDF).
Batteries – button cell
Most button cell batteries found in watches, digital scales, etc., still contain mercury and should be taken to a hazardous waste disposal event (see MCIA collections under Events), or brought to a Hopewell Valley Green Team collection day at the Pennington Farmers Market (last Saturday of the month June through October; see Events).
The Boys & Girls Clubs of Mercer County Bike Exchange is a volunteer-led enterprise that repairs donated bicycles and sells them at modest prices at its Ewing location at Capitol Plaza, raising funds for the Boys & Girls Clubs of Mercer County and promoting biking for transportation and pleasure among low-income families. Proceeds from the Bike Exchange sponsor the Club’s after-school programs. https://www.bgcmercer.org/bgc-bike-exchange
Pedals for Progress rescues bicycles destined for overburdened U.S. landfills and ship them to developing countries where they are sorely needed and highly valued. https://www.p4p.org Note: Pedals for Progress also collects sewing machines.
Mercer County Library Hopewell Branch (call 609-737-2610 for updates about what is accepted)
NewLegacyBooks.com Drop-off boxes, https://newlegacybooks.com/how-where-to-donate-books (books must have ISBN barcodes)
• Stony Brook Elementary School, 20 Stephenson Rd, Pennington, NJ 08534
• Princeton Elks Lodge 2129, 354 Georgetown-Franklin Turnpike (Rt 518), Skillman, NJ 08558
BetterWorldBooks Drop-off boxes, https://services.betterworldbooks.com/individuals
• Hamilton Marketplace, NJ State Hwy 130 & Klockner Rd., Hamilton, NJ 08691
• Hamilton Plaza, White Horse Ave. & Kuser Rd., Hamilton, NJ 08610
All Brita filters, pitchers, dispensers, bottles, faucet systems, and packaging can be recycled. Find out more at https://www.brita.com/recycling-filters and review an illustration of what is accepted. Bring them to a Hopewell Valley Green Team collection day at the Pennington Farmers Market (last Saturday of the month June through October; see Events).
Habitat for Humanity ReStores are home improvement stores that accept small and large donations of new or gently used furniture, appliances, housewares, building materials and more. Proceeds from the sales of these items help Habitat’s work in your community and around the world. https://habitat.org/restores/donate-goods
Cars (including Trucks, Motorcycles, SUVs, RVs) or Boats
Check with your local phone companies and electronics stores — use your ZIP code to find locations at https://search.earth911.com or bring them to a Hopewell Valley Green Team collection day at the Pennington Farmers Market (last Saturday of the month June through October; see Events).
CFL (Compact Fluorescent Lighting) Bulbs
Take to The Home Depot, Lowe’s or MCIA Household Hazardous Waste Collection (see Events)
Broken and old Christmas Lights can be shipped to HolidayLEDs.com for recycling. In return, the company will send you a coupon for a discount off the purchase of new lights. Lowe’s also accepts these.
Dry cleaners may take metal hangers back for reuse. Clothing stores can reuse hangers that are left at the store.
Clothing, Other Textiles and Shoes
Drop off at consignment stores, charities (check websites), and local collection boxes.
➤ Hopewell Valley CHS organizes a year-round textile collection in partnership with Law Enforcement Against Drugs (L.E.A.D) and Turnkey Enterprises. Donations support the L.E.A.D. curriculum in HVRSD schools. A used clothing donation bin is located in Solar Lot at the high school. The following items are acceptable: clothing, shoes, sneakers, belts, purses, blankets, sheets, drapes, pillow cases and stuffed animals. Not acceptable: rags, pillows, scraps of fabric, toys or other household items.
➤ Rescue Mission of Trenton has many collection bins (see map here) for gently used clothing. One is located at Rosedale Mills on Rt 31 N in Pennington; another is at Buxton’s Boxes on Lower Ferry Road in Ewing.
➤ The North Face offers a donation program for used apparel and footwear (any condition, any brand), Clothes The Loop in partnership with Soles4Souls. The closest North Face retail store to Hopewell is on Route 38 in Cherry Hill.
➤ DSW at the Mercer Mall (and their other locations) provides a shoe drop-off box for Soles4Soles.
➤ Eileen Fisher has a buy-back program for used clothing (only their label), Renew.
➤ Smartwool has partnered with Material Return to “collect and deconstruct hard-to-recycle socks and turn them into new goods” via their Second Cut Project.
Contact Lenses and Empty Blister Packs
Drop off or mail https://www.biotrueonedaylenses.com/one-by-one-recycling. A related article about not flushing your contacts: https://earth911.com/living-well-being/recycle-your-contact-lenses
Mail in program http://crazycrayons.com/recycle-program
All types of used eyeglasses and sunglasses, prescription and non-prescription, for children and adults are accepted by the New Jersey Lions Eyeglass Recycling Center. See http://www.njlerc.org/donations. A local collection box (“yellow mail bin”) can be found at Pennington Quality Market, 25 Route 31 South, Pennington; at the Hopewell Township Library; and, in Hopewell Borough outside Michael’s Deli & Bakery on East Broad Street.
Recharging or recycling: http://fyrfyter.net/services/fire-extinguishers/
Fluorescent Light Bulbs (Tubular)
Take to a MCIA Household Hazardous Waste Collection (see Events). The Home Depot does not accept tube bulbs.
Compost in your backyard. Find out more from Master Gardeners of Mercer County here.
Alternatively, set up an indoor worm composting bin. Find out more at https://www.epa.gov/recycle/how-create-and-maintain-indoor-worm-composting-bin
Habitat for Humanity ReStore https://habitat.org/restores/donate-goods
St. Jude’s Ranch for Children accepts new and the front cover of used greeting cards (except from Hallmark, American Greetings and Disney) through a mail-in program https://stjudesranch.org/recycled-card-program/
Leaves and Brush
See the website of your Public Works Department.
Mattresses and Box Springs
Dispose of your used mattress and/or box spring in an eco-friendly way: https://cjpgroup.net
Used medical equipment, such as canes, bath chairs, walkers, wheelchairs, ramps, and tray tables can be donated to Goodwill Home Medical Equipment in Bellmawr (or at any Goodwill Store or Donation Center in the NJ & Philadelphia Region). For lists of acceptable and not acceptable items see: https://www.goodwillhomemedical.org/equipment-donation.
Please review disposal information available at https://www.njconsumeraffairs.gov/meddrop.
There is a 24/7 drop-off box at the Hopewell Township Police Department, 201 Washington Crossing-Pennington Rd, Titusville, NJ 08560. Phone: (609) 737-3100. Note: empty, clean plastic prescription medicine containers and caps can be recycled (see #5 Plastics below).
Scrap metals (ferrous and non-ferrous) can be sold to Sims on Calhoun Street Avenue in Ewing.
#5 Plastics: Rigid Containers and Caps Stamped with a ♷ Symbol
This program has been halted as of November 2020. We are looking for an alternative.
Through Preserve’s Gimme 5 Program you can recycle your #5 plastics – a kind that Mercer County doesn’t recycle. Preserve transforms yogurt cups, take-out containers & other stuff into toothbrushes, cutting boards, and lots of other products for your bathroom, table and kitchen. You can drop off your #5 plastics at any Whole Foods store, or mail it to:
Preserve Gimme 5, 823 NYS Rte 13, Cortland, NY 13045
For more information, visit: https://www.preserve.eco/pages/gimme5-overview
- Be sure to look at the bottom of the containers you plan to recycle since some yogurt containers are actually #6 plastic.
- Most prescription medicine containers and plastic flower pots are also #5.
Plastic Bags and Film Packaging
Clean, dry plastic bags free of food and organic residues are accepted by many retailers. Trex participating locations (in NJ: ACME, Kohl’s, Lowe’s, McCaffrey’s Food Markets, Stop & Shop, Wegmans, Weis Markets, Whole Foods) accept a wide range of plastic bags and wrap, including:
- bread bags
- bubble wrap
- case wrap
- cereal box liners
- dry cleaning bags
- grocery bags
- ice bags
- newspaper sleeves
- plastic wrap around many products (e.g., around paper towels, napkins, etc.)
- plastic e-commerce mailers
- produce bags
- zip locking bags
Plastics must be clean, dry and free of food and organic residue. It is not necessary to peel or cut off paper labels before dropping off your bags/film. Acceptable types of this plastic film can stretch – it isn’t “crunchy.” https://www.trex.com/recycling/recycling-programs/
The Hopewell Valley Central High School is participating in the Trex Recycling Challenge. From November 2021 through April 2022, plastic film will be collected in the special bin located in the CHS main foyer.
Refrigerators & Freezers
As of July 1, 2021 the Clean Energy Program run by the state of New Jersey ceased management of appliance recycling and bulk recycling. Instead, your local gas and electric utility company is now responsible for their own initiatives. In Hopewell Valley, both PSE&G and JCP&L currently replicate the program previously run by NJ that offers a $50 incentive per refrigerator or freezer (must be 10 to 30 cubic feet and in working order). A working room air conditioner and/or dehumidifier ($25 incentive each) can be picked up along with a fridge or freezer.
- Learn more about PSE&G’s appliance recycling program here.
- Learn more about JCP&L’s appliance recycling program here.
Hopewell Township residents can pay a fee to have appliances containing freon (including refrigerators, freezers, dehumidifiers and air conditioning units) picked up from their curb. Monthly dates and more information can be found here.
Pedals for Progress collects sewing machines (as well as bikes) https://www.p4p.org
See Clothing, Other Textiles and Shoes above. Additionally, athletic shoes (without cleats) of any brand and in any condition can be dropped off at a Nike Factory Store for their Reuse-A-Shoe program. The closest store is at the Jackson Premium Outlets.
Snack & Energy Bar Wrappers
Wrappers are collected in a TerraCycle Box (sponsored by Subaru) at the REI store in the Mercer Mall.
Styrofoam Coolers and Shipping Blocks
Bring to a collection organized by the Hopewell Valley Green Team (see Events).
Styrofoam coolers and blocks can also be dropped off at Princeton Moulding, 76 Fourth Street, Somerville NJ. Call ahead to make sure they will be open: 908-291-1180. This facility will also accept Styrofoam food containers if they are very clean and separate from other Styrofoam.
Styrofoam Packing Peanuts
Drop off at Mavis Discount Tire, Pennington. Residents of Hopewell Township can pay a fee to have tires picked up from their curb on May 5 & November 3, 2023 (see information here).
ReBounces mail-in program: https://rebounces.com/about-us/recycle-tennis-balls
Toys & Games
Many brands of toys can be recycled through the Hasbro Toy Recycling program (a partnership with TerraCycle): https://csr.hasbro.com/en-us/toy-recycling.
Plastic toys can be taken to Second Chance Toys which donates toys to organizations that care for children in need: https://www.secondchancetoys.org/initiative. The closest drop off site in Central NJ is in Belle Mead; check the website for dates and hours.
Donate your LEGO bricks via the company’s Replay program: https://www.lego.com/en-us/sustainability/environment/replay. See also https://www.fox13news.com/news/lego-starts-recycling-program-for-unwanted-bricks.
Video Games and Gadgets
Take to Best Buy https://www.bestbuy.com/site/services/recycling
Vintage or Antique Architectural Items
Architectural Salvage: https://www.recyclingthepast.com 381 North Main Street, Barnegat, NJ 08005. Call: 609-660-9790
Take to Whole Foods or bring to a collection organized by the Hopewell Valley Green Team (see Events).
X-Rays (Film Type)
The silver from x-rays can be recovered: https://www.xrayfilmsdisposal.com
Compost in your backyard (see Food Scraps above) and/or use municipal pick-up programs (for Hopewell and Pennington Boroughs).