Interesting Facts About Recycled Products Of Plastic, Steel, And Aluminum

Recycling your consumer waste as much as possible has been a popular way for many years to help the environment. To make recycling more convenient today, many cities offer curbside recycling as part of their garbage collection program. Recycling your appropriate household waste can help to reuse materials that can be recycled into various everyday items. Here are some of the most common items that can be made from recycled plastic, steel, and aluminum products.

Recycled Plastic

Because plastic is made from petroleum, it is not a renewable resource as there is only a limited supply on the earth. When one ton of plastic bottles get recycled, it saves 3.8 barrels of oil that would be used to make new plastic products.

Recyclable plastic comes in two main types, PET and HDPE. PET or polyethylene tephthalate, is semi-rigid to rigid, depending on how thick the plastic is molded. PET plastic is usually made into products of a thinner plastic, such as soda bottles and garbage bags. HDPE, or high density polyethylene, is a more durable and rigid plastic, and is made into things such as the plastic for a laundry detergent bottle.

Besides recycling plastic back into new plastic containers, PET and HDPE bottles can be recycled into all sorts of interesting items. Five empty two-liter plastic PET bottles can be recycled into enough polyester to make one square yard of carpeting. And, HDPE plastic can be recycled into patio furniture, plastic decking materials, truck bed liners, and recycling bins you can leave at your home's curb each week for recycling pickup. 

Recycled PET plastic bottles can also be turned into t-shirts, cell phones, blanket throws, and fiberfill stuffing for comforters and outdoor pillows. This fiberfill stuffing is a great product for outdoor patio items because it is mildew resistant, has a higher loft, more fire resistant, and dries 40 percent faster than other stuffing products.

Recycled Steel and Aluminum

Although they are called tin cans, metal cans filled with food you buy at the store are made from steel or aluminum today and not tin. Tin is now only used in small amounts as a lining for the inside of the can to prevent the food from absorbing a metallic taste from the steel. 

Steel and aluminum cans are one of the most commonly recycled items and are most often recycled back into new cans, but they can also be recycled into other products. Aluminum cans can also be recycled and turned into bicycle frames, sheeting for the outside wall of buildings, parts for airplanes, and lightweight vehicle engine parts. 

Aluminum is great for recycling, because the recycling process does not affect the quality of the metal, so it can be recycled forever. And, scrap aluminum can be melted down at a lower temperature than virgin aluminum, so it saves energy during recycling. 

As soon as a used can is dropped off at a recycling location, it only takes 60 days for the can to get recycled and be back on the shelves of a grocery store again. In fact, 75 percent of all the aluminum produced since 1888 is still being used and recycled today.

Steel cans are recycled into steel for the hulls of ships, pipes, train tracks, and paperclips. It can also be recycled into steel beams, outdoor gliders, and decorative lamps.  Like aluminum, steel is another metal that can be recycled indefinitely, as its quality is never affected. 

Be sure to recycle appropriate products as much as possible to help save some of the earth's limited resources. Many products can be made from recycled steel, aluminum, and plastics. Check with your commercial trash removal company to see what other services they offer. They may be able to help you in your quest.