How to Dispose of Lightbulbs and 9 Other Hazardous Items

When in doubt, don’t toss it out — read this first
lightbulbs Photo: Chones/Shutterstock
old stove
sharp bottles
cooking grease
insulin needles
broken lightbulb
expired medication
mercury thermometer
paint cans
smoke detector
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Think before you throw out

Don’t just toss that broken fluorescent bulb, razor blade or rat poison into your kitchen trash. Instead, properly dispose of dangerous household items that are sharp, toxic or harmful to the environment, says Debra Holtzman, a national safety expert and author of “The Safe Baby: A Do-It-Yourself Guide to Home Safety and Healthy Living.”

The number one rulel: Check local requirements online or call the division in your city or county that handles waste, trash and recycling, Holtzman says. “If you’re not sure how to get rid of something, it’s always best to check,” she adds.

Here are general guidelines on how to safely dispose of 10 common household items.

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