Home Recycling Guide Five simple ways to recycle old CFLs

Five simple ways to recycle old CFLs

Dispose off old CFLs

CFL which is actually known as Compact fluorescent lamps is a light that is especially designed to save energy. It has already replaced the old conventional incandescent lamps which consumed a lot of electricity. Like all other fluorescent lamps, CFLs consist of mercury, which makes disposal hazardous. By now the environmental friendly people have realized that LED (light emitting diode) is the upcoming light as it saves a lot of energy but is expensive. Hence the compact fluorescent lamps are the most efficient ones as it is cheaper as well as saves energy. The formation of the compact fluorescent lamps, their curly demeanor have not only just attracted its users, but has also raised its purchase to about a 100 million people in the United States of America the previous year.

Compact fluorescent lamps contain mercury vapor inside the glass tube. Thus, CFLs should not be disposed off into your garbage waste. If it does then it leads to severe health hazards.

Thus we have summed up five various ways for the safe disposal of your compact fluorescent lamps.

1. Your local garbage service

Your local garbage service

When your sweeper collects your household garbage, and if you avail the service by paying him, then you are likely to receive a bill. Ring up at the center and inquire if they offer CFL or mercury recycling. If they do not offer this service, then request them to start one as soon as possible. Take the help of an activist and make them understand the importance of it.

2. Municipal government

Municipal government

Even if your local garbage services do not provide a disposal of the CFLs then the municipal government is ultimately responsible. Generally phone directories provide the agencies that provide such services. Your location may have a periodic CFL collection. If it doesn’t, then inquire about the nonhazardous disposal of fluorescent tubes.

3. Retailers


If you have brought CFL from IKEA, it can be taken back as IKEA were the first vendors to organize a take back programs. Otherwise if you ask any of the retailers they will probably be amazed. However, you may still ask as the retailers should realize that customers want a safer disposal of the lamps.

4. Earth 911

Earth 911

This is one of the largest clearing houses of Canada and the United States. You have to visit their site and enter the required information. Alternately try “fluorescent bulbs” and “mercury”. If there is any service provided by them, then that will be shown in the website. Earth 911 is currently expanding its coverage and trying to enter Europe and become one of the internationally recognized recycling options.

5. Commercial services

Commercial services

A number of commercial services are offered by many for-profit organizations regarding disposing of old CFLs. If the local options fail then one can surely try out these organizations. These firms are responsible and provide an environmental friendly channel through which the CFL can be disposed off. One of such firms is Lightbulbrecycling.com. Once you report to them, they will send you postage paid and handy plastic pail that can contain around 30 CFLs (most home do not use such a number of CFLs in many years). All you have to do is drop the used CFLs in the well engineered pail and then call FedEx so that they can come and pick it up. However, the disadvantage of using this service is that it is too expensive. It takes around $120 every shipment. This is almost equivalent to thrice the price of each CFL. However, the energy that you save on every bulb almost compensates the money. And there is a satisfaction of knowing that the CFLs are recycled in a safe way.