Our block is just outside the rubbish collection areas. So while our neighbours down the road and around the corner put their supplied bins out for collection, we take our recycling and rubbish bag to the refuse centre ourselves.
This is okay. I like that it makes me think more carefully about what I put in the rubbish bag so we can lengthen the times between trips to the refuse centre. It is also free to dump the council rubbish bag at the tip and the recycling.
Just after we moved. I set up our recycling bins. I went to the hardware shop, knowing the measurements of our car boot and the number of bins I needed that matched the council's recycling streams. I bought the bins, that would mean I could fit all the recycling bins in the car boot but were still a decent size. I bought two different styles because their slightly different shapes, meant they would fit better in the back. I have four 50 litre lidded bins, one for the rubbish bag, one for glass, one for paper and one for recyclable plastics. I have a smaller 10 litre bin for cans. They all have lids and I didn't want lids that would blow away in the wind.
The bins are close to the kitchen for ease of getting the recycling into them and close to driveway, for ease of loading them into the car.
Since I set up this system, I have realised that I don't take them all to the refuse centre at once because we don't fill them all in an even way. I usually take three big bins and the smaller bin for cans. Having the separate bins also makes me aware of what we are using most. Plastics is our most used recycling bin, despite reusing plastic containers where we can.
Every time I go to do the recycling, I am glad I took the time to set up our bins. Others are at the refuse centre picking through their recycling, working out what needs to go where. We drive up, open the back of the car, empty each bin into the appropriate recycling section and we're done with the bins all fitting back into the boot. We are off to add our rubbish bag to landfill while the others are still picking through their assorted bins.
Glass is the only more difficult one because I have one bin, while after the first visit to the recycling centre I found they separate them by colour. I am wondering about dividers down the bin but currently our glass recycling is our least filled bin because we reuse a lot of the glass bottles. I don't take it very often to the recycling centre so it is pretty easy to empty into the right bins. I could have 3 smaller bins for this and we may make this adjustment in the future, if our glass recycling grows.
It is definitely worth the time and the expense, doesn't have to be much, to set up a recycling system in an easy to use way that matches where you need to take it for recycling.
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