badly cluttered room

What Household Items Require Special Removal?

Every year, Americans start tossing out the old and bringing in the new. This spring cleaning ritual is not only good for helping to declutter your home, but it can also help to clear your mind. And spring is the perfect time to purge. The whole concept goes back decades (if not more) to homes heated by wood and lit by lanterns. These homes accumulated a lot of soot, and when spring arrived, homeowners wanted to open up the windows and doors. A deep cleaning helped them to better enjoy the fresh air and all the benefits that came along with it.

That said, the concept of spring cleaning has stuck. It’s estimated that 80% of Americans engage in some sort of spring cleaning. But did you know that not everything you want to get rid of can simply be tossed in the trash? Some household items require special removal.

Have Household Items to Get Rid Of? Here’s What You Need to Know.

Spring cleaning is more than just a tradition—it’s a chance to refresh our homes and minds. However, as we sift through our belongings, deciding what stays and what goes, it’s crucial to remember that not everything can be tossed in the bin. 

Some items lurking in our homes are not just clutter; they’re hazardous and require special care when disposed of. From the electronics that entertain us to the products that keep our homes clean, you should know how to protect the environment.

Electronics (Computers, Televisions, Gaming Equipment, Cell Phones)

These gadgets are a staple in modern life but contain hazardous materials such as lead, mercury, and cadmium. Improper disposal can lead to these toxic substances leaching into the soil and water, posing serious environmental risks. It’s important to take them to designated electronics recycling facilities where they can be safely broken down and repurposed.


Aerosol cans, common in cleaning supplies, spray paints, and even hairspray, contain pressurized gases and chemicals that can be dangerous. If punctured or exposed to high heat, they can explode. These items must be taken to hazardous waste facilities that can handle their safe processing. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) makes it easy to find locations for drop-off.

Propane Cylinders

Many homes have old propane cylinders laying around. Propane is used for grilling and camping. While the best practice is to exchange old tanks for new ones, sometimes that isn’t possible. Unfortunately, these cylinders contain residual gas, which can be explosive. Special care must be taken to ensure they are empty and brought to facilities equipped to handle them. Many local gas stations and convenience stores accept returns, even when you aren’t buying a new tank.

Cleaning Agents

Did you know we produce 400 million tons of hazardous waste yearly? Much of this comes from unused or leftover household cleaners, which often contain toxic or corrosive substances. Flushing them down the drain or throwing them in the trash can harm wildlife and contaminate water supplies. Many communities offer collection days for these chemicals. Be sure to contact your community center or local government to see what options are available in your town.


Strong acids and bases in some cleaning and maintenance products can cause burns and environmental damage if disposed of incorrectly. Special handling and neutralization are often required.

Specialty Batteries (Lithium, Nickel-Cadmium, Button-Cell)

These batteries power everything from laptops to watches but contain metals and chemicals that can be toxic. Dropping them off at battery recycling centers ensures they are processed in a way that recovers valuable materials and prevents environmental contamination.

Old Appliances, Mattresses, and Furniture

Many drop-off facilities will not accept old appliances, mattresses, and furniture. This leaves you with only two obvious choices: bust up the item and throw it away part by part in your home trash (not always feasible or wise) or check into junk removal services.

Need Help with Junk Removal?

If you need professional junk removal, whether spring cleaning or otherwise, we’re here to help. Not only do we accept junk, but we’re happy to come and pick it up at your location. Contact Elite Services today! Give us a call or fill out our online contact form.


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