Become an Expert Recycler
You can make a difference! Learn to avoid common mistakes, determine what’s recyclable and what’s not, and use best practices for keeping your recycling clean and simple.
The Poke Test
If you can poke your finger through the plastic, it doesn't belong in your container.
There’s a sure way to find out if plastic belongs in your recycling container. Take the Poke Test to make sure it doesn’t tangle up in the sorting process.
Rule of Thumb
Never recycle anything smaller than a credit card.
If recyclable materials are smaller than a credit card, they will likely end up in the landfill or jam up the sorting equipment during the recycling process.
Keep Your Recyclables Dry
Allow no more than a teaspoon of liquid in them.
Just one bottle of ketchup with residue could contaminate an entire truckload! Keep recyclables free of liquid or food waste by ensuring that they’re empty, clean and dry.
Don’t Mix It Up
Separate combined materials before you recycle them.
Padded envelopes and electronic or toy packaging usually have combined materials that can’t be easily separated. Make sure to separate recyclables or toss them in the trash!
Pass the Smell Test
If your recycling container stinks, it's probably contaminated.
Put your recycling container to the “smell test”: if something smells bad, it probably has food or liquid waste in it. Be sure everything is empty, clean and dry!