“Thankfully, it only takes a second to Google 'which plastic codes does my recycling center accept' to decide which items [you] can or cannot throw into your recycling bin.”. You may be able to find more information about this and similar content at piano.io, Inside the 2020 Raise the Green Bar Summit, 45 Easy Changes You Can Make to Save the Earth, How to Dispose of Household Items the Right Way, The Truth About What "Eco-Friendly" Actually Means, 30+ Endangered Animals You Should Know About, The Best Reusable Sandwich and Snack Bags, Amina Lake Abdelrahman, Good Housekeeping Institute, Plastic Recycling Symbol #7: Miscellaneous. Good Housekeeping participates in various affiliate marketing programs, which means we may get paid commissions on editorially chosen products purchased through our links to retailer sites. PET is a remarkably energy-efficient packaging material. The current U.S. recycling rate for PET is 31%. The best option is to consult your municipality's website for specific instructions. With all the different rules and symbols, it can be confusing for consumers to figure out exactly what each plastic recycling symbol means and how to recycle it. From helping you decode eco-friendly claims to sharing the winners of our first-ever Sustainable Packaging Awards, we're here to help you make smarter decisions for your home and the environment. That means anything made with LDPE (like toothpaste tubes) can be thrown in the trash. Recycled into: Trash can liners and cans, compost bins, shipping envelopes, paneling, lumber, landscaping ties, floor tile. Why trust us? Many plastics can be readily recycled, but according to National Geographic, a whopping 91% of plastic has never even been recycled. In many countries, PET plastics are coded with the resin identification code number "1" inside the universal recycling symbol, usually located on the bottom of the container. If you need to dispose of either material, ask your local waste management to see if you should put it in the trash or drop it off at a collection center. However, it can be really hard to collect clean, high quality plastics! LDPE items are not commonly recycled and are used to make cellophane wrap, produce bags, disposable diaper liners, and squeezable condiment bottles. How to recycle it: These other plastics are traditionally not recycled, so don't expect your local provider to accept them. It carries low risk of leaching and is readily recyclable into many types of goods. How to recycle it: LDPE is not often recycled through curbside programs, but some communities might accept it. RPET plastics are a similar form to PET. HDPE (high density polyethylene) is a versatile plastic with many uses, especially when it comes to packaging. “But as it turns out, there are several different types of plastic, and some are easier for recycling centers to process than others.”. Comments. But, while the addition of glycol to PET makes it less brittle, it is believed that it also causes PETG to have a higher processing temperature than PET, creating challenges for recycling. PET bottle recycling. Here is a breakdown of the recycling codes and what they all mean: #1 PET – This is a type of plastic commonly used in water bottles, blister packs, and clear food packaging. PET was discovered and patented in England in 1941. PET plastic is recyclable and about 25% of PET bottles in the US today are recycled. The most common types of No. 5 plastics, but Phoenix may not. As a main component in many of the plastic bottles used today, one of the most common discussions about PET plastics is recycling it. Because chlorine is part of PVC, it can result in the release of highly dangerous dioxins during manufacturing. Classic Colonial From 1672 on Long Island Is the Week's Oldest Home for Sale, What the Flip? Remember to never burn PVC, because it releases toxins. Other materials are not approved. Up to 100% of a PET package can be made from recycled PET, and the material can be recycled again and again. Found in: Three- and five-gallon water bottles, bullet-proof materials, sunglasses, DVDs, iPod and computer cases, signs and displays, certain food containers, nylon. The code does not mean the item is made from recycled plastic or that the plastic is recyclable in your area. While the universal plastic resin symbol (three chasing arrows forming a triangle) remains the same, the numbers one through seven inside make a significant difference. PVC can rarely be recycled, but it is accepted by some plastic lumber makers. Found in: Milk jugs; juice bottles; bleach, detergent, and other household cleaner bottles; shampoo bottles; some trash and shopping bags; motor oil bottles; butter and yogurt tubs; cereal box liners. “It's not uncommon to see a recycling symbol on a plastic container and think it's OK to toss it into the recycling bin,” says Sheryl Ryan, founder of Greenopedia. The material was long on environmentalists' hit lists for dispersing widely across the landscape, and for being notoriously difficult to recycle. Found in: Shampoo and cooking oil bottles, blister packaging, wire jacketing, siding, windows, piping. Other materials are not approved. The versatile material is in our cars, toys, packaging, clothing, home goods, food utensils, and so much more — but it's also littering our streets, clogging our waterways, and choking marine life. This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the, Sorry, we were unable to share this article. When the little triangle has a 2 inside and the code of either HDPE or PE-HD under it, you know that the plastic it adorns is made from high-density polyethylene. Polyester resins are known for their excellent combination of properties such as mechanical, thermal, chemical resistance as well as dimensional stability. It's best to throw loose caps into the garbage since they easily slip through screens during recycling and end up as trash anyways. HDPE or PE-HD. 7 Things You're Recycling Wrong: How Many Are in Your Blue Bin Right Now? List of submissions for which FDA issued a favorable opinion on the suitability of a process for producing recycled plastic to be used in food contact articles. Also known as the resin identification code, or RIC, each number imprinted on a plastic product indicates the type of plastic resin that product is made with. The Meanings of The Recycling Symbols: Plastic #1 - PETE or PET (Polyethylene Terephthalate) Yes- Recycle this A plastic resin and the most common type of polyester. Her work has been featured in Military Officer, California Lawyer, the American Scholar, and PracticeLink magazines. A container coded number 1 is polyethylene terephthalate, called PET or PETE. RPET is the short name often used for recycled polyethylene tetraphyte (PET). This figure continues to grow, but notably lags behind Europe, which has a PET recycling rate of 52%. Get quick and easy access to your home value, neighborhood activity and financial possibilites. Add to that its strength, versatility, and recyclability, and PET boasts an excellent sustainability profile. The chasing arrows, to most of us, mean recycling. How to recycle it: PVC and V can rarely be recycled, but it's accepted by some plastic lumber makers. We’ll explain a bit more about PET below, but for now, just know that it is the world’s fourth most common plastic resin, used in everything from food packaging to clothing. Flimsy plastics (like grocery bags and plastic wrap) usually can't be recycled, but some stores will collect and recycle them. These are created after the recycling of polyethylene terephthalate. Plastics with this number are also picked up by most curbside programs and can be recycled into many kinds of goods. This high impact plastic is used for things like beverage bottles, food jars and frozen food trays. Found in: Squeezable bottles; bread, frozen food, dry cleaning, and shopping bags; tote bags; furniture. For example, San Diego may accept No. Recycled into: Decks, paneling, mud-flaps, roadway gutters, flooring, cables, speed bumps, mats. For the best experience, please enable cookies when using our site. The numbers and letters act as identification for the recycling teams. Recycled into: Insulation, light switch plates, egg cartons, vents, rulers, foam packing, carry-out containers. Polyethylene terephthalate (PET) is a highly recyclable plastic resin and a form of polyester. 8 Myths About Renting You Should Stop Believing Immediately, 6 Ways Home Buyers Mess Up Getting a Mortgage, 6 Reasons You Should Never Buy or Sell a Home Without an Agent, Difference Between Agent, Broker & REALTOR, Real Estate Agents Reveal the Toughest Home Buyers They’ve Ever Met, The 5 Maintenance Skills All Homeowners Should Know, Click for complete coronavirus coverage from realtor.com, Don't Toss That! This number designates a miscellaneous category for all other plastic resins like acrylic or nylon. FYI: Just because a product has the chasing arrows symbol, doesn't mean it's recyclable — it's just an indicator of the type of plastic. Plastics are classified into one of seven categories, each one a different material that is more or less easy to recycle. Recycled into: Polar fleece, fiber, tote bags, furniture, carpet, paneling, straps, bottles and food containers (as long as the plastic being recycled meets purity standards and doesn't have hazardous contaminants). PET is spun into fibres for permanent-press fabrics and blow-molded into disposable beverage bottles. Here's what each plastic recycling symbol means, along with examples it's found in and how to recycle it. It is recycled in some areas and used to make similar products like plastic wood, insulation, and hard-plastic pens. Thus it is accepted at most recycling plants. Recycled into: Signal lights, battery cables, brooms, brushes, auto battery cases, ice scrapers, landscape borders, bicycle racks, rakes, bins, pallets, trays. 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