3 Things You Really Need to Stop Recycling

takeout in plastic takeaway containerAre you trying to recycle more?

If so, then we congratulate you for trying to make a difference in the world!

While we do commend you for taking the time and the effort to actively recycle more, there are some things that are commonly recycled that shouldn’t be.

And unfortunately, recycling these items can cause more trouble and contamination than you may realize:

1) Disposable Coffee Cups

First things first, it’s cheaper to make your own coffee in the morning and place it inside of a reusable to-go travel cup than it is to buy it every morning from a store. It’s also less wasteful this way.

However, if you do need to purchase coffee on the go, DO NOT recycle the coffee cup when you’re done drinking it. Most disposable coffee cups are not recyclable due to a polyethylene coating on the cup to prevent the liquid from soaking through the cup. Make sure these cups go directly into the trash.

If the cups are made from plastic, check to see if there’s a recycling symbol on it and if there is, recycle it. This goes for the plastic lids on the cups as well.

2) Soiled Takeout Containers

When you order takeout food, plastic containers and paper boxes are what the food is going to come packaged in. If any of these containers are heavily soiled with stains or leftover food, your curbside recycling service is going to end up having to remove it from the load.

However, if there are enough soiled containers, the entire load of recyclables is going to end up in a landfill — which is even more wasteful. This means that you should rinse these containers out before recycling them.

We know what you’re saying, “I have to wash them and then recycle them?”

You don’t have to scrub them clean, but give them a quick rinse before placing them in the bin. The environment thanks you for it!

As for greasy pizza boxes, throw them out in the trash. If the box has no grease on it then you can recycle it, but too much grease means it won’t be accepted with other cardboard.

3) Plastic Bags

Even though plastic bags are made from, well, plastic — they should NOT be recycled. In fact, they can ruin the recycling process by getting caught in the machinery at the recycling center.

The best way to get rid of plastic bags is to no longer use them anymore. Reusable totes can hold more groceries and are stronger, so you won’t have to fear that your bag will rip when you bring the groceries into your home.

Not to mention the fact that many cities are beginning to ban plastic bags in an effort to reduce pollution of them.

We’re so happy that you started to recycle more, but there are some things you should stop putting in your recycling bin from now on.

If you have any other questions regarding recycling, trash removal, or would like these services for your home — don’t be afraid to give us a call!


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