Don't toss them in the trash, but don't toss them in the recycling bin, either.
Alina BradfordCNET Contributor
Alina Bradford has been writing how-tos, tech articles and more for almost two decades. She currently writes for CNET's Smart Home Section, MTVNews' tech section and for Live Science's reference section. Follow her on Twitter.
It never seems to end. Each year you pull out strands of used lights and find out they don't work. Before tossing them, try these easy tips for fixing Christmas lights. If that still doesn't work, refrain from dumping them in the trash -- and from your recycling bin.
How to recycle lights
Christmas lights can't be recycled like plastic bottles or cans because they are made up of several different components, including glass, plastic and metal. If you're a seasoned recycler, you know that you typically separate items made of different materials before you recycle them.
Some recyclers take lights year-round, and you may even make a little cash. For example, New Jersey's Rockaway Recycling pays customers who bring in old lights by the pound.
Your best bet is to call your local recycling centers to find out who is recycling lights and when. Or you can google your town's name + Christmas light recycling to potentially find out the information online.
Give them to charity
If you can't find a place to recycle, there is a charity called the Christmas Light Recycling Program that takes old lights (including broken ones), recycles them and uses the money to buy books and toys for less advantaged children. All the toys and books are then donated to the DFW Marine Toys for Tots Foundation to be distributed.
In the US, you can mail light donations to: Christmas Light Source Recycling Program, 4313 Elmwood Drive, Benbrook, TX 76116.
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