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How do you sort your recyclables?

Posted by justgotabme (My Page) on
Wed, Aug 20, 08 at 22:52

We have a wonderful stacking bin holder for our recyclables right outside the door from the kitchen to the garage. You'd think that would be very handy, wouldn't you? Well it's not quite handy enough. I rince every bottle and can before tossing it. So needless to say it has to dry before it goes in the bin. My rule. I finally came up with a way that will hopefully work. Hubby liked the idea right away. That's a plus. Well if it means he'll work on using this new system.
The cabinet below used to house a small lidded waste basket that was made to use handle bags and one of those little hanging bag storage thingies, along with a short handled broom and handled dust pan. I rarely used the last two items since I prefer "sweeping" with my vacuum.

Out went all but the bag storage thingie and an extra hook that was in there that now holds a handle bag for trash. In went two shelves from the cabinet above it along with paper bag for storing folded boxes and paper trash, the box hubby's beer bottles come in and a plastic container for all rinsed cans and bottle waiting to dry. Once dry out they go to be stepped on and put into the bins in the garage.

While I have you here, does anyone know where I can get a can crusher? My folks had one and boy did it make things easier.

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Follow-Up Postings:

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RE: Oh and......

a container of Clorox disinfectant wipes for quick clean up when the trash gets messy.


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RE: How do you sort your recyclables?

I have 3 bins in the garage by the door and I rinse and don't wait for anything to dry. I just push in the cans with hand and same with plastic. I remember seeing a can crusher in Lowe's or HD.


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RE: How do you sort your recyclables?

So needless to say it has to dry before it goes in the bin. My rule.

I'm wondering why you wait for it to dry. And why it drying in your kitchen, inside a wooden cabinet, somehow feels any better than drying in the garage, inside a plastic bin.

Are you worried about mildew? As long as the bin isn't airtight, it ought to dry; could you simply leave the lid off as a normal rule? It can't be any slower to dry out there than in your kitchen.

If it's drips, I don't have any wise words.

BUT....I like those hooks stuck to the BACK of your cabinet--did everybody see that? This is one of my organizing tips that I thought I was SO clever to have come up w/, the placing of hooks on the back and sides of cabinets & bookshelves.

Then I realized I wasn't so original (clever maybe, but I have a lot of company).


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RE: How do you sort your recyclables?

I just rinse mine and put them into the recycle bin.

No problems with water or mold... and I only handle the rinsed items once.


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RE: How do you sort your recyclables?

It could be I got into the rinsing/drying habbit from when we drank regular pop and tossed the cans into paper bags to return for deposit when we lived in Iowa. Though now the rinsing would be for kindness of the folks at the recycle center.

We have three young kitties that love to rush to the door and out into the garage to play with bugs so opening the garage door so often isn't such a fun thing either. But really why let out cool air when you don't have to? Yes, the garage has six in framing and inside that it's filled with Icynene insulation, but it's still warmer out there than it is in the house when the air isn't turned on out there.
I was really hoping to find more of how other's recycle than diagnos how I do mine though. This just happens to be what works best in our situation. Not that I mind the questions, I just wanted to learn more about what other's do and get you all thinking about organizing a recycling area.
~Becky <><

Here is a link that might be useful: Icynene Insulation


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RE: How do you sort your recyclables?

"I was really hoping to find more of how other's recycle than diagnos how I do mine though. "

That's what I told you... how I do mine! I rinse and put in the bin.
I offered no diagnosis of your procedure...


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RE: How do you sort your recyclables?

Becky, I have three large large plastic tubs from our recycling company. The one for paper goes just under a "desk-like" area in our kitchen, convienently right underneath the spot where I sort mail. So junk mail can just be tossed right in there after work when I'm sorting. Then I take it into the living room on the night before I set it out, and fill it with old newspapers and magazines. I'm too lazy to go through those on a daily basis, but at least they get picked up every other week. :-) Now I have a box in the office for "recycleable" paper that also gets dumped in the bigger bin right before pick-up day.

As for plastic and cans, the two large bins for those are in our office, with room to store broken down boxes right beside them (I think there's a picture in the "office purge" thread towards the bottom). That way I don't forget the boxes when I take the bins out. I wanted to put the bins right outside the back door near our kitchen (our garage isn't accessible from inside the house), but the recycling company requests that they be kept inside between pick-ups to preserve the bins. So they're stored back in the office because that's where I have room (small galley kitchen).

Under my kitchen sink is where the real sorting happens. I have my regular trash can, a small basket for kitchen laundry, and two more small trash cans - one for cans (rinsed and tossed in), and one for plastics (rinsed, crushed and tossed in). I empty those into the big bins about once a week, or whenever they're full. But having those smaller trash cans right there means I can just rinse and toss in the bin right away while I'm cooking or cleaning up the kitchen, and not have to take more steps on a week night when I'm already kind of hurried trying to get stuff done. The few items of plastic recycling that come from other rooms just get rinsed out wherever, and put straight into the bigger bin (like laundry bottles, shampoo bottles, etc).

We're requested to crush plastics to save space, but cans don't have to be crushed, so I don't.

So I handle most things twice, but it works for maximum efficiency around our house during the week, taking my own lazy tendancies into account and working with them as much as possible. :-)


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RE: How do you sort your recyclables?

We have a designated shelf unit out in our garage for recyclables. Bins to hold glass, aluminum cans and plastic bottles. I rinse them out, as I can't imagine what the great volunteers at our village recycling center must have to deal with! Things dry very quickly out here in the SW, so I let them dry in the garage. Newspapers get stacked in paper bags, which are also recycled. I've switched to cloth grocery sacks, though, so when my small supply of paper bags runs out, I'll just stack my newspapers in an open box instead. I have a small plastic trash can in my utility closet, just off the kitchen, and use it for holding stuff till I can carry it out to the garage. Nothing very efficient or noteworthy, but it works for us. I think the coolest thing is that we're all recycling. Pats on the back for us all!


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RE: How do you sort your recyclables?

Our area requires supermarkets to use the biodegradable plastic bags, and that's what homeowners are supposed to use for recyclables. We don't separate glass, cans, or bottles, but everything must be in these light plastic bags when placed at the curb. If you put out, say, an old Target bag filled with cans, the recycling truck will not accept it. The workers plop the orange sticker of shame on any ordinary plastic bag.

That makes it simple. I keep a wastebasket in the kitchen using these supermarket bags as liners to hold cans, etc. I don't have a garage or carport, so I keep a dark green narrow trashcan at the back door to hold full bags. Tucked behind a couple of evergreens, it's invisible to the neighbors. There's another wastebasket indoors with the same liners to hold newspapers as they accumulate. We shred most junk mail and put the paper in the compost pile along with most veggie waste. Again, a very basic recycling system, but we don't have much actual "trash" left over to be sent to the landfill.


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RE: How do you sort your recyclables?

We have a double trash pullout under the sink--the front one is garbage; the back one is recycleables.

They're not the world's hugest trash cans, but they work.

(we don't sort plastic from glass or metal; paper is the only recyclable that's sorted, and it doesn't get stacked up in the kitchen; it all goes in a trashcan by the front door)

Justgotabme, You're a great example to the rest of us of how to look at the stuff in your home and realize you don't actually use it, and that the space would be better spent another way.

And in a way, you've also followed Organizing Tip #17. Reject stereotypes!
--you've put trash in a pantry cabinet!


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RE: How do you sort your recyclables?

I keep my recycle bins on my driveway, next to my regular garbage cans. Each night, after preparing dinner, I bring the empty cans and bottles outdoors and put them in the proper can. My recycling gets collected once a week. I stack up newspapers in my house and bring them outside regularly.


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RE: How do you sort your recyclables?

Luann, I should have said I was hoping for more pix or details of just how you go about recycling. I was trying to hurry and answer before I had to leave to go watch my grandson. I'm sure you noticed I didn't take time to proof read. (shame shame) Do you recycle more than cans and bottles?
Jamie, it's nice to hear we're not the only ones that are a bit lazy, so to speak, in not taking it immediately to the main recycle bins. Thank you. I feel much better. At least now, like you we have a good place to store it.
We live in the country and don't have a recycling company that picks up. We take them into town and to a center set up by the local 4H Club. When we lived in Omaha, they gave out tubs that will used paper bags to sort for weekly curb pick up. I miss that, but it's nice to know the 4H kids are profitting from it. One of the 4H Dad's has started a once a month pick up using his truck in neighborhoods inside the city limits.
I wish I could get my hubby to take the time to shred our mail, but since he won't I started burning it in the fireplace.

Lynn, I'm with you. As long as we are recycling it's good. I've used collapsable baskets and mesh bags for quite some time, but sad to say I got out of the habbit there for awhile when life got a little more hectic. I now make sure I have reuasable bags in my car at all times. If I can just get hubby to do so. I really don't think it's as he says that he doesn't want anything extra messing up his car. I think it's he doesn't want to carry the bags into the store. I'm working on him though.

Good for you community HollyGrove! The orange sticker of shame is a great way to wake folks up and do what's good for the earth.

Thank you Talley Sue. I can never be accused of not thinking outside the box for a solution to a problem of any kind. My hubby is slowing learning that my ideas aren't always as crazy as they sound. I draw a lot of pictures for him or just do something to prove it will work.

Jannie, what do you do with them before you take them out each night? I guess if I only drank one can of pop a day I wouldn't have to worry about opening the door to the garage so often.

Thenk you everyone for your replies. Now I have to figure out hot to cook the beef ribs I defrosted. I'm so not a cook. :^(


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RE: How do you sort your recyclables?

"Luann, I should have said I was hoping for more pix or details of just how you go about recycling.... Do you recycle more than cans and bottles?"

Actually, there are no details - just township-issued bins in the garage that rinsed items go into!

Sadly, in my area, we can only recycle glass containers, bimetal & aluminum cans, and #1 & #2 plastics. That's all.


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RE: How do you sort your recyclables?

We just rinse and throw into the recycle can. Our garbage man takes recycling and doesnt require it to be sorted. They sort at their site. For many years we sorted and took it to the recycling center ourselves. It was really a hassle to maintain so many containers.I'm relieved not to have to do that anymore.


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RE: How do you sort your recyclables?

I think I'm having a bad day. I've been in a rush all day long and the only thing I got done was pick up a couple things at the store on the way home from our son's place. I can't even spell today. Think I should go to bed and hopefully get something accomplished tomorrow. Not that seeing my grandson wasn't a wonderful thing to do. He's just so darn cute and moving around so much more than a couple weeks ago when I last saw him.
Thanks Luann, like I said, I'm kind of of out of it today. Recycling isn't pretty, but it makes for a prettier earth.

cynandjon, you are lucky to not have to sort it yourselves. I guess we wouldn't have to since it's all volunteer here, but I can't see backing up the lines on Saturday mornings at the recycle center waiting on the volunteers to run around sorting it. They keep busy enough just tossing things onto the tables for other volunteers to check before tossing in large bins. It's amazing to watch how organized they are though.
~Becky <><


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RE: How do you sort your recyclables?

My last kitchen had an angled corner that held a Rev-a-shelf 3-bin spinning unit that I used for aluminum cans, glass, and plastic. Worked great -- new house won't have it and I know I'll miss it!!

We had a can crusher in the garage and put a trash can lined with a garbage bag under it. Crushed cans went right down into the bag! For years, friends of ours had an annual party that was funded by cans everyone brought to them . . . then they started making a profit and got embarrassed! Great idea!

Here is a link that might be useful: aluminum can crushers


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RE: How do you sort your recyclables?

Our recycle stuff is picked up every other week. In my laundry room (right next to the kitchen) I have 2 pull-out large drawers, with 2 large waste baskets in each. I save cans and plastic bottles in one basket, with plastic bags behind. In the other drawer I recycle cardboard (cereal box type), and behind that basket is where I save my paper bags from the grocery store (reusable). All of this stuff is recycled, plus newspapers, which have to be tied up, heavy cardboard, also tied up, and any shredded paper that's ready (that has to be put into see-thru bags, which I never have been able to find, so I ignore that). The recycle co. also requires that we tie up our mail, mags, etc., but everyone just puts mags, books, and other papers in those brown paper bags from the store. When it's time for the truck to come, we put everything out by the curb, via the garage (door from laundry room into garage). We're really thankful that we have such a good service - I don't know what I would do otherwise.

Those neat drawers in the laundry room were something I asked for when our kitchen-laundry-powder room was completely done over 2 years ago. It's been working really well - and I've just recently been planning on rearranging things in the cabinets to make them more efficient (and get rid of stuff, especially from the top shelves).


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RE: How do you sort your recyclables?

westernpa Luann
ours is only #1 & 2 paper and glass. The rest has to go to the garbage man. I try not to buy any plastic that isnt recycleable but its not easy to do.

Becky like I said we did the recycle center for a long time (25 years) and we DID have to seperate. I wouldnt take it there either without seperating it. (Actually at ours it was required.)


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RE: How do you sort your recyclables?

I can't help with the recycle sorting. Ours is sort of distributed in several different places because of our layout.
But I can recommend the can crusher below. My mom has had hers for about a dozen years & I just got mine about 2 years ago. Its really sturdy & boy does it save on space in the recycle bin!

Here is a link that might be useful: Can crusher from Lee Valley


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RE: How do you sort your recyclables?

We are lucky - in Columbus, you just put all the recycleables into a red bin & the pick up service dumps it in their truck. They sort it at their facility. So I don't have to sort at all!


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RE: How do you sort your recyclables?

DH put shelves just outside the door to the garage, one shelf for each type of recyclable, one bin per shelf. The laundry sink is right inside the house by that garage door. Cardboard in the top bin, plastics (rinsed in the sink, not dried) in the second bin, rinsed cans in the third, newspapers in the bottom. On recylce day, out they go to the curb. The recycle guy loves us because all our stuff is presorted. I might hose off the bins once in a while before bringing them back into the garage and putting them on the shelves...


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RE: How do you sort your recyclables?

Hostagrams, is there anyway you can find another tri can spinner for your new home? I think I'd be tempted to take the old one with me. If you're home hasn't been sold yet take it out before you show it again and it's legally yours unless already stipulated in the sales contract.
Thanks for the link too!

Plow, sounds like you have a great system going for you. Along with your recycling service. I do say I miss it coming to our home like it did in the city, but it's nice to know here it helps support 4H. It's worth the drive into town.

Cyn, now that you mention numbers one and two I should ask if they do more. I was only going by what the city took. Hubby just went up this past Saturday so it will be a few weeks before we go up there again, but maybe they have a website I should check. I'm glad you mentioned that. Thanks!

Seasyde, thanks for the link. I'll check that out. I'm so tired of having to cruch them by stepping on them. Hubby has been doing it lately since I wear my Bass thongs all summer long and they and crushing just don't go together. I'd either twist my ankle or hurt the shoes, though they are sturdy (I replace them about once every decade) I don't want to take the chance.

Mommabird, you don't mean Columbus, Nebraska, by any chance, do you?

Jak 1 sounds like you have a great system too. We have bins just out side the door to the garage, but we were lucky and found a drawer type unit that works great. Never thought of adding shelves right out side the door for purchased bins. At the time we bought ours we were having trouble finding anything aimed at recycling. I'm guessing it's easier now. We found the bin storage at Home Depot for only $19.99 about five years ago. As you can see it's double that now at Wal Mart.

Here is a link that might be useful: Sterilite stacking bins


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Not Nebraska

Sorry, not Columbus, NE. I live in Columbus, Ohio - home of the Ohio State Buckeyes (go Bucks). One great thing about Columbus is not having to sort recycling! We used to live in a suburb and had to sort everything out.


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RE: How do you sort your recyclables?

Well, I've been to Toledo when I was quite young and Cincinnati in the ninties, but never to Columbus. I wish it were Nebraska's Columbus. We could have met up sometime.
~Becky <><


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RE: How do you sort your recyclables?

If you need a Newspaper Recycle Bin, there are some great
ones here.
See link below.

Here is a link that might be useful: Newspaper Recycle Bins


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RE: How do you sort your recyclables?

we have a 3 hole kitchen sink (44"). ready 4 dishwasher go in right hand side, middle is ALWAYS kept empty to use as a sink,left has a wire basket to hold drying dishes. Recycles go in there, as they need to be cleaned before going into 3 huge trash cans. All cans are labeled and sorted in the garage. I am raising my kids to recycle so that they will have a clean earth to live on. I fought to get that huge sink in, no one wanted me to have it. I will NEVER regret it or go back to a 2-hole sink again.
With kids there is always something that needs to get hand-washed and air-dried. recycles seem to fill it almost daily.


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