Recycling is easier than ever in Pacifica. Still, with so many restrictions on the items that can be included with your regular garbage and curbside recycling programs, it's difficult to know what to do with the toxic waste that modern households seem to generate by the ton nowadays. Here is a list of recycling centers in Pacifica, their hours of operation, along with information on the types of items that are accepted. When planning to visit any of these recycling centers, it's a good idea to contact them in advance to confirm the times when they accept materials for recycling and any requirements they might have for containers.

Combined with our home business, we generate a lot of excess cardboard from boxes left over from the mail and UPS as well as the packaging from everything we buy. We're concientious enough to retain all that material for recycling, but I'm very lax about actually getting the job done. The cardboard boxes are a real headache. They have to be cut down flat and bundled properly in order for them to be picked up with the curbside recycling pickup. But my personal bugaboo has been the styrofoam inserts that protect electronic equipment and appliances. They're huge, ungainly, and they tend to break down into a coarse powder if you don't treat them carefully. Fortunately, Coastside Scavenger will take those styrofoam bricks at their recycling yard on Palmetto Avenue here in Pacifica. You can also drop off your excess cardboard if its properly flattened.

For disposing of hazardous waste, items like petroleum products, pesticides, and household chemicals that are not accepted by the recycling centers in the list below, check with the San Mateo County Health Department.

Be sure to visit CalRecycle the State of California Department of Resources Recycling and Recovery website for the latest information on new requirements for businesses to implement a recycling program under AB 341 which became effective on July 1, 2012.

Please note: Since I no longer live in Pacifica, it's difficult for me to stay informed on these issues, although I try to research recycling information occasionally. So I would appreciate it if you would notify me of any updates or errors so that I can correct any misinformation listed here. Just use the Contact page. Thank-you!

Recycling Services & Locations

Recology Of The Coast
2305 Palmetto Avenue
Pacifica, CA 94044
Hours: Mon-Sat. 8 AM-12 Noon; 1 PM-4 PM
Accepts household batteries, latex paint, flourescent light bulbs, computers and TVs (for a fee), antifreeze, used motor oil, oil filters, tires, and car batteries.
Click here for details.

Sanford Firestone
705 Hickey Boulevard
Pacifica, CA 94044
Accepts antifreeze, used motor oil, oil filters, tires, and car batteries.

Oil Changers
2880 Skyline Boulevard
Pacifica, CA 94044
Accepts used motor oil.

Recycling Electronics

Electronic equipment is one of the most prevelant sources of toxic waste in the U.S. today. From televisions and stereos to PCs, cell phones and laptops all contain significant amounts of toxic materials - especially lead and more exotic elements like selenium. To help combat the problem, the State of California has recently started to add recycling fees to selected electronic components to help finance their disposal.

For people in Pacifica, it's helpful to know that Goodwill stores in San Mateo County are now accepting computers and peripherals, TVs under 27 inches, and cell phones for refurbishing and recycling. See their site at for details on their programs to put working electronics back to work helping poor and handicapped. There's a Goodwill store on El Camino Real and So. Spruce Ave., kiddy-corner from See's Candies where you can drop off qualifying electronic devices.

If your old electronics are still in good working order, but have merely outlived their welcome in your house, check out the website where you can sell or trade-in your old electronic equipment. They don't buy everything, of course, but it's a painless, if not profitable, way to dispose of those old relics you no longer use or need.

For more information on recycling for home and businesses, see Recycle Works, for San Mateo County residents.

And be sure to see our Pacifica Business Directory.

Disposing of Old Medications and Prescription Drugs

You can drop off old medicine for proper disposal at Police Stations in Pacifica, San Bruno, and Daly City. Throwing drugs away in the trash or pouring liquids down the drain is very bad for the environment because of water contamination, so do take the time to dispose of them properly.

Be sure to see our Pacifica Resources page.

See our Pacifica Site Map to locate information on our website.