Unwanted household products labeled as flammable, toxic, corrosive, or reactive are household hazardous wastes (HHW). For a list of common products visit the "What is Household Hazardous Waste
Once the hazardous waste arrives at the HHW facility it is sorted into specific categories. Whenever possible the HHW Program recycles products unless no other alternative is available. View our "Hazardous Waste Management Matrix"
to learn what happens to specific products.
Yes. Department of Transportation (DOT) law only permits the transport of a MAXIMUM of 15 liquid gallons or 125 pounds of hazardous waste per vehicle. If you have more than this amount you may bring the additional hazardous waste in two or more cars or in two or more trips. If you have concern about the amount of waste you have, please contact (408)299-7300 to discuss disposal options.
California has developed a Certified Used Oil Collection Center Program. Disposal locations, which are often auto repair or auto service shops, are called "Certified Collection Centers". Under the collection program, residents can be paid 16¢ per gallon for all used oil brought to the centers. Some of the Certified Centers also accept used oil filters. The Certified Collection Centers take uncontaminated motor oil during business hours only and will NOT accept antifreeze, transmission fluid, brake fluid, or contaminated motor oil. Please call the Certified Collection Center prior to any drop-off. For more information visit the Certified Collection Center
The HHW Program operates almost every Saturday and some Fridays throughout the year (with holiday exceptions). Please see our Operating Schedule
for exact days or call (408)299-7300 for more information.
The County Board of Supervisors has approved a Countywide Household Hazardous Waste Fee (HHW Fee), as authorized by Public Resources Code 41901. The HHW Fee is $2.60 on each ton of waste disposed of at landfills located within the county or taken to non-disposal facilities located within the county and subsequently transported for disposal to landfills located outside of Santa Clara County. More populated cities contribute more to the HHW Fee due to varying disposal volumes. The HHW Fee pays for program fixed costs, abandoned waste at Nonprofit Charitable Organizations, and a Variable Cost Per Car to service 4% of residnets in each jurisdiction. The fixed program costs include facility maintenance and county staffing and labor. The Variable Cost Per Car is the cost associated with actual labor, waste disposal, transportation and other services provided to the residents at the County Household Hazardous Waste Collection Facilities (CoHHWCF) and at Temporary Events. The Variable Cost Per Car is estimated to be approximately $67 per car for Fiscal Year 2010.
HHW drop-offs are highly organized productions. Making an appointment assures that among other things, residents will flow smoothly through the site without delay. Also, it prevents traffic delays and risk of accidents. Arriving at your designated appointment time allows us to get more vehicles through the facility than would be possible if everyone showed up at the same time. To arrange an appointment or for more information visit www.hhw.org
or call (408)299-7300.
We do not provide specific facility addresses until residents schedule an appointment. Due to problems with illegal dumping. The rotating schedule, weekday business drop-offs, facility maintenance, limited staff and budget restrictions limit us to only allow drop-offs on the Saturdays and sometimes Friday at facilities in the cities of San Jose, Sunnyvale, and San Martin. Call (408)299-7300 for more details.
The city of Palo Alto operates it’s own Household Hazardous Waste Drop-off Program. To contact them call (650)496-6980.
No. Unfortunately the facilities cannot handle even the smallest trailers. If you bring a trailer to the site you will be turned away.
Please bring materials in their original, labeled, and sealed containers when possible. Never mix chemicals together. NO containers will be returned, so bring the wastes in disposable boxes or bags for quicker removal from your vehicle. If possible please sort materials by the following categories: 1)Aerosols; 2)Paint related materials, flammables and auto fluids; and 3)Cleaners, and yard or garden products. For your safety, transport the waste in your trunk or the back of a pick-up, away from the passenger area.
Currently our facilities are equipped to handle all household hazardous wastes with the exceptions of tires, ammunition, O2 and CO2 cylinders, biohazard wastes (excluding medications and sharps), explosives and radioactive material. Please call (408)299-7300 if you have any questions about what waste will be excepted.
Proof of County of Santa Clara residency, such as a driver's license or a utility bill, will be required at the check-in area.
The drop-offs are held rain or shine.
We have permanent facilities located in Sunnyvale and San Martin as well as temporary sites that change location throughout the year. To help prevent illegal dumping we do not provide site locations until you have made an appointment.
In an effort to promote the re-use of many unused household products the HHW Program has setup an area at each facility where customers can pick up FREE products such as paints and thinners, pool chemicals, fertilizers, household cleaners and automotive products. The Reuse Program
is only open on facility operating days, so please call (408) 299-7300 for times.
Appointments are limited. If you are unable to keep your scheduled appointment time, please call the appointment line at (408)299-7300 to cancel or reschedule. This allows other residents to use the program via your appointment time slot. Appointments and cancellations can only be made Monday through Friday 8:30 to 4:30.
Currently funding limitations prevent the HHW program from being open 7 days a week. We have recently added more Friday appointments in San Martin to help accommodate those residents only able to drop off waste during the week. Also, if our Saturday drop-off locations are too far for you, look at our schedule for our next temporary drop-off in your city. The cities of San Jose, Santa Clara, Milpitas, Cupertino, and Los Altos are visited at least once a year.
No. The HHW Program is free to Santa Clara County residents and is paid for by the city you live in.
There is no limit to the times a resident can use the HHW Program during the year as long as each visit is made by an appointment.
No. Currently the costs associated with operating a Household Hazardous Waste pick-up service far exceed our funding resources.
No. For the safety of your pets, and our staff, please leave them at home.