what not to recycle

What NOT to Recycle

Recycling is a continually growing movement. Because of that, the number and kinds of products which can now be recycled are growing, as well. Unfortunately, it’s easy to get confused about what can and can’t be recycled. The little green symbol is a good start, but there are a few more specific things to know about what NOT to recycle.

Shredded Paper

One of the first steps of any recycling process is sorting. Shredded paper is difficult to sort, and many paper recyclers will not accept it. Unless your documents are highly confidential, simply rip them in three or four pieces and they can easily be recycled. One additional note: brightly colored paper of any kind is enough to get an entire batch of paper rejected. Light-colored paper is best.

Plastic Bags

Absolutely no plastic bags should be placed in a general recycling bin, as they are the primary cause of sorting machines getting clogged. These bags can and should be recycled, but take them to your local grocery or discount store for a separate recycling process.

Pizza Boxes

Though they often have the recycling symbol on them, used pizza boxes are not recyclable. The grease from the pizza contaminates the water-based paper recycling process and can ruin the entire process. The same is true of other grease-stained paper products, such as napkins, paper plates and paper towels.

Bottle Caps

Plastic bottles are not made out of the same kind of plastic as their plastic lids. This creates a problem because the thicker bottle caps do not melt at the same temperature as the bottles. Even a few bottle caps in the mix can ruin the production run, so look for the best place in your area to recycle your bottle caps.

If you haven’t already established an effective recycling program for your home, consider Santa Rita Waste Systems to find a waste disposal product that suits your family’s needs, like a roll-off dumpster. Doing your part to save our nation’s landfills and conserve our resources is not only responsible, it’s easy to do.