You’re probably aware that recycling is an eco-friendly practice. However, most people are still in the dark when it comes to more specific details, like what materials can be recycled, or how they should be sent to the recycling center. Here are a few tips for practicing this planet-saving housekeeping measure.
Sort your items by material.
When you go to a self-service restaurant, you might notice two main trash bins: one for “trash,” and one for “recyclables.” However, lumping all recyclable items together can lead to contamination and confusion, preventing them from being recycled at all.
During this housekeeping task, separate the items according to their materials. The main categories are cardboard, mixed, paper, compost, and commingled, the last of which includes plastic, glass, and aluminum.
Learn which plastics are accepted.
Unfortunately, not all plastics can be recycled. Those numbered 1, 2, or 5, can be safely sent off—this includes water bottles, peanut butter containers, and milk jugs.
Plastics numbered 3, 4, 5, 6, and 7 should not be included in your commingled bin, as they can get tangled in the sorting machines. If your local recycling plant accepts them, they must be taken separately.
Include contaminated objects.
Some objects which may seem easily recyclable—like a cardboard pizza box—should never be placed in your recycling bin. Once grease from the pizza soaks into the porous cardboard, it can no longer be broken down and reused. When it comes to other materials, such as plastic, make sure to rinse out any remaining milk, salad dressing, or cleaning solutions before throwing them in the recycling bin.
Leave air where you don’t have to.
While you might not be able to flatten out that beer bottle, it’s important to remove the air from recyclable items whenever possible. Flatten cardboard boxes, compress soda cans, and squeeze water bottles to eliminate space in the bins. This makes it easy to dispose of more items in the same bin and speeds up the process at the plant, saving energy in the long run.
Once you’ve learned the ins and outs of recycling, you may feel overwhelmed by your to-do list. Luckily, you can outsource this housekeeping task to the experienced professionals at Right Cleaning in Brooklyn, NY. They provide several essential house cleaning services to area residents, from routine upkeep to move-out overhauls. They’ll also remove your recycling. To learn more about their work, visit their website or call (212) 655-7153.