5 Things You Thought You Could Put In The Recycling Bin But Can’t

It has been great to see, over the years, the number of comprehensive recycling programs that have sprung up in municipalities around the world. The number of common household items that we are now able to recycle and eliminate from landfills has been steadily growing, but there are still a number of items that people think are recyclable, when they actually are not. Below are 5 things you thought you could put in the recycling bin but can’t.

5 Common Non-Recyclable Items

Pizza boxes. Pizza boxes are made of cardboard, and cardboard, in most other forms, is certainly recyclable. However, pizza boxes contain oil from the pizza, which soaks into the cardboard, and, when included with other cardboard in the recycling process, can contaminate the entire batch of recycling.

Plastic bottle caps. You can certainly recycle your plastic water bottle, but the cap is unrecyclable. The caps on most plastic bottles are made from plastic #5, which many household pickup recycling programs will not take. This also includes plastic tops on things like detergent bottles and tubs of peanut butter.

Styrofoam. Styrofoam is everywhere and it’s an environmental disaster. Styrofoam is made from petroleum and it is highly flammable and most, if not all, municipal pick-up recycling programs will refuse to take it. Check around your community to see if there is a Styrofoam recycling location near you so that you can safely dispose of it.

Aerosol cans. Even those these cans are made out of recyclable metal, they contain harmful chemicals and therefore cannot be taken to the curb with the rest of your recycled metal, which probably takes the form of aluminum and tin cans.

Wet paper. If the paper you are planning on recycling has ever been wet at any point, it can’t be. The fibres become damaged once the paper is wet and it can, like the oil in the pizza boxes, contaminate the rest of the recycling.

We should all try and recycle as much as we can, whenever we can. It’s always a good idea to try and improve your recycling knowledge and keep adding to the list of common household items that are recyclable. However, there are some items that simply cannot be recycled, even though they may contain recyclable parts, or seem identical to other recyclable materials. Keep the above five items in mind when recycling things around your home and do your part for the environment.

Creative Ways To Use Your E-Waste

E-waste or waste from electronics such as computers, televisions and telephones is not the easiest to dispose of. Most cities will not accept this type of waste via blue bins, which leaves recycling centres as the only option and they’re not always easily accessible. One way to handle e-waste is to repurpose it in a creative way. This can be a fun project that will save you the time and hassle of making a trip to the recycling centre. Here are some creative ideas.

How To Upcycle Your E-Waste

  1. Computer Monitor Turned Storage Unit or Pet Bed. Hollow out an old computer monitor and give it a coat of paint. Have fun decorating it. It’s a great and fun way to store toys or books in a child’s room or office. It can even be turned into a bed for a cat or dog. Simply add a cushion and voila!
  2. Vintage TV Set Turned into Bar. If you’ve got an vintage TV set from the ‘60s lying around (a newer model would also work while a flat screen would not), you can turn this into a retro bar that will hold your liquor and act as a unique drink station for guests. Simply hollow out an old television and use fabric and a glue gun to cover the inside. You can hang some string lights inside of it to light up your bar. Store all of your nicest bottles in the centre of the television where the screen used to be and store glasses and other drinkware on top of the television set.
  3. Nintendo Controller or Vintage Telephone Turned Mobile Phone Docking Station. Use an old Nintendo controller or a vintage telephone in a very retro way to charge and display your mobile phone. Drill a hole in the controller that is the size of your charger and then weave the charger through this hole so that the charger is facing up. Place your mobile phone on top of it and you’ve got yourself a new phone docking station.
  4. Keyboard Turned Pen Holder. This is a very fitting option for a desk with materials you’re sure to have at home. Get yourself a cardboard box (the size of a pen holder) and then pull all the keys out of your keyboard. Flatten the underside of the keys and then super glue the keys on the cardboard box until it’s completely covered in keys.

For all of your other junk, rent a dumpster-removal bin. Contact our team at Junk It! today for more. We will remove all of your junk quickly and efficiently.

How To Repurpose Old Furniture

Before you decide to simply throw away your old furniture, you may want to consider how it might be put to better use. You could sell it online (think Kijiji or Craigslist) or even have a garage sale, you could donate your old furniture to a better home, like the Salvation Army, or you could put your DIY skills into use by either refinishing a piece of furniture to update its look, or give a piece of furniture an entirely different use by repurposing it.

Repurposing Old Furniture

If you have old furniture simply sitting around collecting dust or furniture that may even be broken, only a little imagination is required to turn your aging pieces into something new and unexpected.

  • Chairs.
  • There are a lot of repurposing options for chairs from decor to storage to even being a planter (replacing the seat with a well-sized pot will give you an easily transportable garden for you to display on your porch, in your backyard, or in your garden).

    If your chair has an ornate wooden back, you can even transform it into a large picture frame.

  • Bookshelves.
  • You can transform your old bookshelf into a bar, displaying your alcohol and drink-wear in a classy way that is easy-accessible and perfect for entertaining guests.

  • Side Tables.
  • You can repurpose old side tables into stools. Paint them to match the décor of the room you plan to use them in and add simply add a cushion as a finishing touch.

  • Vintage Chest.
  • A vintage chest can be transformed into a variety of new pieces. One option is an island for your kitchen. Consider adding a marble top to really complete the look. Alternatively, a chest can also be repurposed into a coffee table. This will provide you with a lot more storage space than a traditional coffee table.

  • Dresser.
  • You can turn this into a planter, filling the drawers with dirt and planting your choice of plants or flowers into it. Placing it along a fence in your backyard adds to the appeal of the area, and having things like vegetables and herbs elevated will prevent animals from ruining them. Alternatively, you could turn it into a bookshelf, an entryway table for keys and mail., a desk, or even a bathroom vanity. The options for reusing your dresser are endless!

  • Secretary Desk.
  • Depending upon the size, a secretary desk can be transformed into a classy linen closet, for all of your towels and sheets. Use your best linens, as these will be on display, while old linens can be housed in the drawers below.

If you have old furniture that is not worth salvaging, contact our team at Junk It! We will have all of your furniture out of your house before you know it.

UPDATE: Almost sold out for Victoria Weekend. Order soon.