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How to maximise your recycling with minimal effort

You’ve got your routine sorted and you’re recycling as much as possible, but could some things still be ‘slipping the net’? It may be possible to boost your recycling efforts without placing extra demands on your time.  Here’s how:

Make it convenient

If you have various bins, boxes and bags that are stored outside or in the garage, you and other family members may be less likely to use them if the kitchen bin is a closer, more convenient option.  Keep it simple by installing a kitchen recycling bin or bag for all your clean, dry recyclables and then sort into the correct containers when the bin is full.

Prioritise the recycling bin

Once you have a recycling bin or bag in your kitchen, placing it in a more easily accessible position than the rubbish bin will soon ensure it becomes the main bin by default. Scientists agree that it takes at least 21 days for a new behaviour to become a habit, so give it a month and you’ll automatically head to the recycling bin.

Add recycling bins to the most used rooms

Most recycling happens in the kitchen but what about waste generated in our bathrooms, bedrooms and living rooms?  Adding a stylish recycling bin to each of these rooms will capture shampoo and shower gel bottles, loo roll tubes, newspapers and magazines, cardboard inserts and many other bits and pieces that would otherwise end up in the rubbish bin. Find out what bathroom items can be recycled here.

Think beyond your household recycling collection

There may be household items that are not accepted in your collection but can be recycled locally, such as batteries, lightbulbs or small electrical items.  A small box in a cupboard, shed or garage is ideal for stowing these occasional items away until you’re heading in the vicinity of your local recycling centre.

Clean(ish), not pristine

If you can’t remove all residue from tins and jars, don’t worry. The preference is that recyclable material is as clean as possible but your council would rather a jar or tin with some residue was put out for recycling instead of waste collection.  Just remove any food bits eg baked beans, give it a swish out to remove as much of the residue as possible and recycle.

Not sure what you can recycle at home?  Find out here