Ask 2: How can you recycle old holiday lights?

holiday lights
holiday lights (KPRC 2)

At KPRC 2, we’re dedicated to keeping Houstonians informed. As part of our new Ask 2 series, the newsroom will answer your questions about all things Houston.

The question: How can you recycle old holiday lights?

Houston’s Solid Waste Management Department said Houstonians should not place their old holiday lights or power cords in curbside recycling bins. The cords and string lights could tangle rotating machinery at the recycling plant, which could break equipment. This leaves many in the city without a clear-cut way to dump old holiday lights responsibly.

Here are five ways to recycle your old and broken holiday lights:

Houston Zoo

The Houston Zoo placed a holiday light recycling bin outside its main entrance. Only string lights will be accepted for recycling; floodlights, extension cords and light hooks will not be accepted. The Houston of Zoo is located in Hermann Park at 6200 Hermann Park Drive, Houston, TX 77030.

City of Houston

City of Houston Recycling Centers and the City of Houston Zoo accept strands of old and broken holiday lights.

Here is a list of recycling centers in Houston:

  • North - 9003 N Main 77022
  • Northwest - 14400 Sommermeyer 77041
  • Northeast - 5565 Kirkpatrick 77028
  • Southeast - 2240 Central Street 77017
  • South - 5100 Sunbeam 77033
  • Southwest - 10785 SW Freeway 77074
  • Westpark Center - 5900 Westpark 77057

Goodwill Houston

Goodwill accepts holiday lights in working condition. Drop your old lights off at a donation bin or store or near you. Click here to find a location.

Christmas Light Source

This company based in the Dallas-Fort worth area runs a year-round Christmas lights recycling program. Christmas Light Source offers anyone who participates in the program a 10 percent discount on Christmas lights. The business donates all proceeds from the recycling program to Toys for Tots.

Box up your old or broken christmas lights in small box and mail them to Christmas Light Source Recycling Program at 4313 Elmwood Drive, Benbrook, TX 76116. Include your name and email address somewhere on or in the box and Christmas Light Source will email you a discount code. Then, the business will take the lights to a company that recycles the copper, glass and plastic. Christmas Light Source will use the recycling proceeds to purchase books, educational games, puzzles and toys that it will then donate to Toys for Tots.

Holiday LEDs

The Wisconsin-based company offers a year-round holiday lights recycling program. Those who participate in the program receive a 15 percent discount on new lights purchased from Holiday LEDs. The company recommends shipping your old lights in a small box using the most economical method available. Ship your lights via USPS, FedEx, or UPS Ground to 2300 South 170th Street, New Berlin, Wisconsin 53151. A third party recycling facility will recycle the box and the holiday lights.

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