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Where to recycle christmas lights in Pittsburgh (& by mail)

A list of hardware stores where you can drop off your lights for recycling

by Cassidy Swanson
January 5, 2022

Stop!

Drop the Christmas lights and step away from the garbage can. 

With the holidays behind us, the decorations are coming down (unless you’re one of those people who prefers to keep them up through January to bring some light to the dark winter months). 

You’ve packed away the stockings and the ornaments, the tree skirt and star at the top of the tree. You’ve recycled the tree at a local Pittsburgh spot, but what about those old lights that don’t work? Rather than tossing them back into the large box of lights you keep stowed away in your garage (only to become a tangled mess next season), or worse, throwing them in the garbage, recycle them! Yes, you can recycle those colorful strings. 

Disposing of your Christmas lights is as good as tossing them in a landfill. Depending upon what kind of lights you have, like compact fluorescent light bulbs (CFLs), you may be releasing mercury straight into the environment.

Keep an eye out for Christmas lights collection boxes around town, or check out this list of local spots that will take your broken, burnt out lights.

Recycling Christmas Lights in the Pittsburgh Area in 2022

Here are some of the places where you can recycle Christmas lights in Pittsburgh and the surrounding areas. Look for a drop-off bin in the front of the hardware stores listed. They’ll be around for a few weeks following the holiday.

Ace Hardware // Wexford 

Address: 11910 Perry Hwy, Wexford, PA 15090

Busy Beaver // Irwin and Lawrenceville 

Address: 8800 Norwin Ave., Irwin, PA 15642

Address: 4743 Plummer St., Pittsburgh, PA 15201

Castriota Metals and Recycling // McKees Rocks and South Hills

Address: 1140 McKee St., McKees Rocks, PA, 15136

Address: 1200 Saw Mill Run Blvd., Pittsburgh PA, 15220

Daniel’s Discount // South Park 

Address: 5724 Curry Road, Pittsburgh, PA, 15236

Evolution E-Cycling // Southside

Address: 2235 Mary St., Pittsburgh, PA 15203

Michael Brothers Hauling & Recycling // Baldwin

Address: 901 Horning Road, Pittsburgh, PA 15236

Miller’s Ace Hardware // Bethel Park 

Address: 3400 South Park Road, Bethel Park, PA 15102

Rollier’s Hardware // Mt. Lebanon

Address: 600 Washington Road, Pittsburgh, PA 15228

Westmoreland Cleanways // Greensburg 

Address: 355 Pleasant Unity Mutual Road, Greensburg, PA  15601

📦 Recycle Your Holiday Lights By Mail

If you can’t make it to any of these drop-off sites, there are three companies you can mail your unwanted lights to instead for recycling. Each company specializes in selling lights and will email you a coupon after they receive your lights for recycling. 

To lessen your carbon footprint, pack the lights in the smallest box needed to contain the lights, don’t include any packing materials, and ship the lights in the slowest and least expensive way.

  1. Holiday LEDS
  2. Environmental LED
  3. Christmas Light Source 

What Should You Do With Lights That Still Work?

Do you have lights that still work or other decorations that no longer bring you joy? Instead of tossing them, try your local Buy Nothing group. These groups offer a great way to gift your extra lights (and anything else) to your neighbors.

When you’re ready for a new set of lights next year, remember to switch over to LED bulbs, which are both friendlier on your wallet and the environment than other options.

📸 Header photo: Getty Images

A part-time freelance writer and full-time copywriter, Cassidy is a lover of all things Pittsburgh. She fell in love with the bridges, the rivers, the culture, and the food from the first moment she stepped foot in the city in 2015. She has a passion for storytelling, whether it’s working on her creepy thriller novel at night or writing about incredible food and must-see locations. When she isn’t writing, you’ll find her practicing yoga, tending to her plants, crafting a new recipe in the kitchen, buying more books than she’ll ever be able to read, or daydreaming about the next...

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