Start 2020 green by recycling holiday lights and trees

King County, local businesses offer ways to clean up after the New Year

The holidays are wrapped up for another year as we start to ready ourselves for the new decade. One of the first steps is to take down the decorations and find a way to remove the large tree from the living room.

This year Rainier Wood Recyclers is accepting trees for recycling for free during a limited time, according to a City of Covington press release.

Rainier Wood Recyclers is located at 28411 Covington Way SE and will accept up to two trees per car from till Saturday, Jan. 4. Rainier Wood’s regular business hours are 7 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday, and 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Saturday. All trees must be clean with no flocking, tinsel or ornaments.

King County is also offering many ways to recycle your tree so it can become compost or wood chips. If you have curbside yard was collection services, your tree can be placed on the curb with the usual waste.

Many King County facilities are accepting trees for recycling as yard waste. These include;

•Cedar Grove Composting — 17825 Cedar Grove Rd. SE, Maple Valley 98038. Hours are 7 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Saturday. Costs approximately $5 per tree.

•Pacific Topsoils, Inc. — 21700 SE Lake Francis Road, Maple Valley 98038. Hours are 7 a.m. to 3 p.m. Monday through Friday. Cost is $5 per tree.

•Sunset Materials — 18011 Renton – Issaquah Road SE, Renton 98059. Hours are 7:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday through Friday and 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Saturday. Trees can be dropped off for free between Thursday, Jan. 2, and Wednesday, Jan. 8. After Jan. 8 the cost is $21 per tree.

•Bow Lake Recycling and Transfer Station — 18800 Orillia Road S. Tukwila 98188. Recycling area hours, including yard waste, is 6 a.m. to 8 p.m. Monday through Friday, and 8:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. Saturday and Sunday.

•Cedar Falls Drop Box — 16925 Cedar Falls Round SE, North Bend 98045. Hours are 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday, Wednesday, Friday and Saturday. The station is closed on Tuesday and Thursday. Maximum load size is one ton or three cubic yards.

•Enumclaw Recycling and Transfer Station — 1650 Battersby Ave. E., Enumclaw 98022. The station is open 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. every day.

•Factorial Recycling and Transfer Station — 13800 32nd Street, Bellevue 98005. Hours are 6:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday through Friday and 8:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. Saturday and Sunday.

•Shoreline Recycling and Transfer Station — 2300 N. 165th Street, Shoreline 98133. Hours are 7:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday and 8:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. Saturday and Sunday.

All King County facilities will be closed on New Years Day, Wednesday, Jan. 1.

All other King County facilities will accept holiday trees as garbage for a regular garbage fee. Trees must be no more than 8-feet long. The garbage fee through 2019 is $25.25 at minimum or $151.06 per ton. Starting in 2020 the garbage fee is $25.50 at minimum and $151.33 per ton. Minimum fees cover up to 320 pounds.

King County’s Cleanup LIFT program offers a $12 discount for residential customers enrolled in ProviderOne, EBT or ORCA LIFT who haul their garbage, yard waste, clean wood and refrigerant-type appliances to a King County facility. The discount is good for each type of waste per entry. Just show your card upon entry

Where to recycle holiday lights?

After cleaning off the tree for recycling, residents may also be left with a pile of dead or broken holiday lights that need to go. According to King County’s website, many retailers and other organizations accept old holiday light strangs for recycling.

“For drop-off programs, call first if possible to confirm they are taking the lights, get more specific location information if needed, confirm the hours and see if they have any restrictions. These programs are free unless otherwise noted,” the website states.

Most holiday lights recycling programs want you to remove large glass bulbs (the smaller bulbs are okay) from light strands, and remove any excessive plastic attachments from the light strands, since that glass and plastic is not recyclable.

Places to recycle holiday lights include;

•Ace Hardware Maple Leaf external link neighborhood store in north Seattle, 9000 Roosevelt Way NE. — Mail-in recycling program. Sender pays postage. — Mail-in recycling program. Sender pays postage.

•McLendon Hardware — All seven Puget Sound area locations.

•Point Defiance Zoo and Aquarium program — Three locations, two in Tacoma and one in Eatonville. Ends Jan. 12.

•Recology — stores in Bothell, Burien, Issaquah and Shoreline. Fee of $1.25 per strand of lights.

•Ridwell — Paid recycling collection program serving some King County neighborhoods. One-day holiday lights collection service offered Jan. 13-24 for those customers.

•Uptekk — recycling drop-off center in Pacific.

•West Seattle Recycling drop-off center.

To learn more about how to have a green and eco-friendly holiday in 2020, visit

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