It’s never been easier to think green. In this day-and-age, most people probably have a recycling bin at home and at work. That little blue bin with the unmistakable logo is a visible reminder to put our planet first.
While it is easy to drop that empty soda bottle in the bin, what about household items? Well, it is not only possible but also surprisingly easy to recycle a wide variety of products. Read our guide and learn how to recycle mattresses, kitchen gear, electronics, and batteries.
We’ve got the information people need to dispose of these materials in a safe and responsible manner.
Mattresses And Box Springs
Mattresses and box springs can be heavy and cumbersome. (If people have ever had to move a mattress up and down two flights of stairs, they know what we’re talking about.) So what is someone supposed to do with their big old mattress? These are definitely not going to fit in that little blue bin.
Luckily, most mattresses and box springs are made out of recyclable materials such as fabric, wire, and paper. Additionally, many communities offer mattress recycling as part of their pick-up services. Simply look at the website for each municipality to find out if this is an option.
If someone’s community does not recycle mattresses, many mattress retailers will recycle the old mattress when they buy a new one. In addition, many online companies will pick up the old mattress when they deliver a new comfortable mattress. People should take a close look at the delivery details when shopping for an online mattress, and they might not have to carry that old mattress on foot.
Even in this age of chargeable electronics, many household electronics and devices may still require batteries. What is someone supposed to do with these batteries when they run out of juice?
Like the other items on this list, batteries can be recycled. It is especially important to recycle batteries so we don’t have hazardous chemicals just sitting in landfills.
First off, people won’t have to recycle batteries if they opt for reusable batteries. However, if one needs to dispose of old batteries, they should follow the guidelines to the letter. For example, automotive batteries can’t be discarded in landfills due to the toxic chemicals they contain.
It’s also helpful to check with local retailers or the local trash hauler about battery collection programs.
We live in an age of electronics. While we all wish our computers and other gadgets could last forever, this is simply not the case.
If it is time to get rid of that old computer, people have a few options. First off, they can return it to the manufacturer for recycling. They can also wipe its memory and donate it to a charitable organization. By doing this, people can help the environment as well as those in need.
How about cell phones? Again, people have options. Most cell companies will accept the old device as part of a trade-in or recycling program. For instance, people can trade in Apple devices for credit toward a new device. Even if they won’t take the device as a trade-in, Apple will recycle it.
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Kitchen Accessories And Appliances
Grandma’s cast-iron skillet might last for another 50 years, but most kitchen accessories and appliances probably won’t. What does one do with these items when they have reached the end?
- Many kitchen appliances are made of steel, making them recyclable. In some communities, people can recycle small kitchen appliances curbside or they can drop them off at recycling centers.
- Empty glass jars that once contained food are usually recyclable. First, rinse them out to remove excess food residue, remove metal lids, and recycle them with other glass items. Recycle the metal lids with other metal recyclables.
- People can recycle old metal flatware with other scrap metal items. Old cookware can often be recycled along with scrap metal.
- Recycle milk cartons with plastics or paper, according to the local recycling guidelines.
Empty Cleaning Products
Once bottles or boxes of cleaning materials are empty, it is quite easy to recycle them. Plastic containers that contained soap or other chemical are usually recyclable. Simply place these items into a bin with other recyclable plastics. Plastic soap dispensers with pumps are also recyclable.
Containers made of metal and cardboard are usually recyclable as well. Just make sure to separate the metal parts from the cardboard. Then recycle the metal with other metals and recycle the cardboard with other paper recyclables.
Makeup And Deodorant Sticks
Like other household items, makeup has a shelf life. However, the chemicals contained in makeup can be harmful to the environment. When disposing of makeup and other cosmetics, make sure to check with manufacturers first. They should provide information about how to safely dispose of their products. They might even offer trade-in programs.
When it comes to recycling deodorant, one needs to be careful. While the plastic shell could be recyclable, the dial might not be. If someone looks on the bottom of the deodorant stick, they should find more details about the materials used. One can also look for products that specifically indicate the entire container is recyclable.
People might think they can recycle mirrors with other glass items. This is not usually the case, however. Most mirrors contain chemicals that aren’t recyclable. People should check with their municipality for proper disposal methods.
They could also try donating their mirror to a secondhand shop. If the mirror is broken, place the pieces in a paper bag and dispose of them.
If people keep this information in mind, they should have no trouble disposing of their household items. Again, if someone is unclear about how to dispose of an item, they should check their local recycling guidelines.
- How Do I Recycle? Common Recyclables
- Where and How to Dispose of Unused Medicines
- Recycle it Right
- How to Dispose of Broken Glass
- When Gadgets Become Garbage: How to Recycle Electronics
- How to Recycle Batteries
- Recycle Your Used Oil Filters
- Disposing of Old Computers
- Tips to Recycle Right
- How to Recycle Old Appliances
- What Can I Recycle?
- Top 18 Things You Should Not Recycle Curbside
- Why You Should Recycle Your Mattress
- How to Recycle Mattresses
Featured image: Syda Productions/Shutterstock
Joe Auer is the editor of Mattress Clarity. He mainly focuses on mattress reviews and oversees the content across the site.
He likes things simple and take a straightforward, objective approach to his reviews. Joe has personally tested nearly 250 mattresses and always recommends people do their research before buying a new bed. He has been testing mattresses for over 5 years now, so he knows a thing or two when it comes to mattress selection. He has been cited as an authority in the industry by a number of large publications.
Joe has an undergraduate degree from Wake Forest University and an MBA from Columbia University.