A-Z of Recycling
Advent calendars - Take out the plastic insert and then recycle the cardboard.
Aerosols - empty aerosols can be recycled in your household recycle bin and at all Norfolk County Council Main Recycling Centres.
Aluminium drink cans - Can be recycled through all councils' recycling schemes and at all Norfolk County Council Main Recycling Centres.
Aluminium foil - Cannot be recycled through council recycling schemes, but clean foil can be recycled separately at Norfolk County Council Main Recycling Centres
Appliances - Please see Electrical and electronic equipment and appliances
Asbestos - Asbestos cannot be recycled, as it is a Hazardous waste. Click here for further details before disposing of asbestos.
Attic Clearance - Having an attic clearance? Consider selling, swapping or donating the item. You could also use your local Freecycle group to find a good home for the item.
Autumn Leaves - Can be composted at home. Some councils offer a garden waste collection scheme. Autumn leaves can also be taken to Norfolk County Council's Main Recycling CentresBack to top ^
Bags - See Plastic bags
Bathroom fittings and furniture - This is DIY waste and cannot be disposed of through your normal waste collection. If refitting a bathroom, why not hire a skip? If not you can take 1 item (e.g. a bath is one item) per week to Norfolk County Council Recycling Centres free of charge, or larger amounts to the subsidised pay as you throw service at one of the 7 main Recycling Centres at Caister, Hempton, Ketteringham, King's Lynn, Mayton Wood, Mile Cross and Thetford.
Batteries - Can be taken to one of Norfolk County Council's Main Recycling Centres or to one of many battery boxes in retail stores. Try to use rechargeable batteries instead!
Bedding - Reuse old bedding as dust sheets. Good quality bedding may be accepted by your local charity shop or clothes bank.
Beds - See furniture
Bicycles - most bikes can be given a new lease of life after you have finished with them. Look out for community reuse/repair groups in your area or try: www.bicyclelinks.org.uk www.thevauxhallcentre.com or www.keystonetrust.org.uk. Alternatively, bicycles can be taken to your local main recycling centre.
Books - Old books may be accepted by your local charity shop, can be taken to any of Norfolk County Council's Main Recycling Centres, or to your local book bank. You could also join Bookcrossing, a group for readers around the world www.bookcrossing.com
Bricks - Cleaned bricks can be reused in the garden to make a barbeque or to line paths. One 80 litre sack of DIY waste can be taken to Norfolk County Council Main Recycling Centres free of charge each week, or larger amounts to the subsidized pay-per-load service at one of the 7 main Recycling Centres at Caister, Hempton, Ketteringham, King's Lynn, Mayton Wood, Mile Cross and Thetford.
Bubble wrap - see Packaging
Building materials/ rubble - Many building materials can be reused around the home. You may also be able to find a new home for it through your local Freecycle group. You can also dispose of some DIY waste through Norfolk's Main Recycling Centres. Call 0344 800 8004 for further details.
Business waste - waste from some businesses can used as a resource in another. For further details on help with recycling in your business please click on business waste on the left. Some organisations collect materials from businesses that can be reused for art and craft projects, usually with children. The Norfolk based Mini-Scrapbox is a local charity that offers this service.
Bulky waste - your local district council may offer a collection service and items such as furniture can be reused or recycled at Norfolk's Main Recycling Centres. Please visit http://www.norfolk.gov.uk/Environment/ for further details. Alternative options include using local online forums to either sell or give away unwanted items, or contacting a local charity to see if they are interested in your item for reuse or sale. A free service run by www.recycle.co.uk encourages members to list their items for charities to claim if they wish to - after 48 hours the listing becomes available to the general public if of no use to the charity partners.
Cans and tins - Can be recycled through all the council kerbside recycling schemes, at Norfolk County Council Main Recycling Centres, and can banks in the county.
Car Batteries - Your old car battery can be taken to any of Norfolk County Council's Main Recycling Centres
Cardboard - Can be recycled through all council kerbside recycling schemes in Norfolk and at Norfolk County Council's Main Recycling Centres
Cards - Reuse as gift tags or recycle them at W H Smith, Tesco and TK Maxx through the Woodland Trust, visit www.woodland-trust.org.uk
Carpets - You can reuse old carpets in the garden to insulate compost heaps or keep weeds down if you have an allotment. If in good condition consider selling your carpet. Place it on your local Freecycle group.
Carrier bags - Take a reusable bag shopping instead! If you do end up with carrier bags reuse them as bin liners. Many supermarkets also collect them to be recycled.
Cartridges (Ink Jet) - Many charities will collect these for recycling, for example the East Anglian Childrens' Hospice www.each.org.uk/how-to-help/recycling
Cartridges (Toner) - Several companies and charities will accept toner cartridges for recycling.
Cassette tapes (Audio) - If you cannot reuse them, unfortunately cassette tapes will need to be disposed of in your rubbish bin.
Clothes - Clothes that are wearable can be donated to charity shops, or put in clothing banks. Clothes in poor condition can be reused around the home as rags or stuffing materials.
Compact Discs (CDs) - Consider selling or donating your old CDs to charity. They can also be reused as bird scarers in the garden. Some companies will recycle them and/or pay you money for them and make new products out of them www.recyclingcds.com or www.musicmagpie.co.uk
Cooking Oil - If you do have any cooking oil from deep fat fryers, cooled oil can be placed in a sealed plastic bottle and taken to your local Main recycling centre.
Computers - The Norfolk based charity Recycle-PC offer a free collection service for unwanted computer equipment in the Norfolk area. Unpaid volunteers work to ensure that all equipment is either reused to build working computers which are donated free of charge to local worthy causes, or sent for recycling. Visit their website at www.recycle-pc.co.uk for more information and to arrange a collection. There is also a Computers for Carers charity seeking computers with at least Windows Vista installed. These are then refurbished and offered to carers for free. Visit the website for further details at www.computers4carers.co.uk Your computer can also be recycled through any of Norfolk County Council's Main Recycling Centres. Make sure you use a suitable programme to completely clear the hard disk of all personal data, before recycling your computer.
Crockery - Consider selling, or donating to charity. Offer it on your local Freecycle group. If you can't do this, you could use it to line the bottom of plant pots to help drainage. If the items are in good condition, you could take them to the Reuse Shelters at the main recycling centres. As a final option crockery would need to go in your rubbish bin.
Crutches and zimmer frames - Return to your local hospital physiotherapy departmentBack to top ^
Decorations - Reuse them or make new ones from recycled materials.
Detergents - Use refill schemes offered by many manufacturers. The plastic bottles can be recycled through some council kerbside recycling schemes or recycling banks.
DIY materials - When planning DIY projects, think about how you will dispose of the waste. Try and offer things for reuse wherever possible. A limited amount (one item or one 80l sack a week) of DIY waste can be taken to Norfolk County Council's Main Recycling Centres for free, or pay as you throw for larger amounts at one of the 7 main Recycling Centres at Caister, Hempton, Ketteringham, King's Lynn, Mayton Wood, Mile Cross and Thetford. For large projects contact a skip company or similar.
Call 0344 800 8020 for further details.
Duvets - Local Animal shelters and similar operations may be glad of any bedding you could donate. Alternatively old duvets can be placed in your rubbish.
DVDs - can be reused via charity shops etc. or sold on www.musicmagpie.co.uk (see CDs above)Back to top ^
E-cards - A great way to say a paper free 'Happy Christmas' or 'Happy Birthday'.
Egg boxes - Some councils accept cardboard egg boxes for recycling, alternatively they are great to add to your compost heap to help circulate the air. You can reuse plastic egg boxes as seedling trays.
Electrical and electronic equipment and appliances - If in good condition consider selling. You may also be able to find a new home for it through your local Freecycle group. Some electrical suppliers will take back old items when you arrange purchase of a new one. You can also take electrical goods to all of Norfolk County Council's Main Recycling Centres to be recycled.
Envelopes - Try to reuse where possible. Check with your local council if the kerbside recycling scheme accepts envelopes. Some bring banks accept envelopes.Back to top ^
Fabric - If you cannot find a reuse for it, it can go in your local textile bank.
Fertilisers - try to use these up rather than disposing of them. If you have any residue to dispose of please see Hazardous Waste.
Fire extinguishers - these must be treated as Hazardous waste and not placed in your rubbish bin. Contact the manufacturer for advice or find a local fire extinguisher company online or in the yellow pages. Some companies will recondition units or take them if you purchase a new unit from them. Otherwise search for a waste collection company who are licensed to take hazardous waste. The County Council may offer a yearly Household Hazardous Waste Amnesty in the future (usuallly Sep/Oct) when you are able to dispose of extinguishers for one weekend only at selected Main Recycling Centre. However, Main Recycling Centres do not accept fire extinguishers at any other time.
Fireworks - must be treated as explosives - unused fireworks must be stored safely until they are used (see manufacturers guidelines). After use, they must first be dampened (soak in a bucket of water) and double wrapped before placing in your household rubbish bin.
Fluorescent tubes - Fluorescent tubes are hazardous waste and should not go in your council waste collection. You can take them to be recycled separately at any of Norfolk County Council's Main Recycling Centres.
Food - Try to only buy what you need and compost vegetable scraps. Look for recipes to use up leftovers.
Fridges - If in working order consider selling or finding a new home for your fridge through your local Freecycle group. Some retailers will take fridges back for you when you purchase a new one. You can take fridges to any of Norfolk County Council's Main Recycling Centres to be recycled. Or you can ask your district council to collect them for a small charge.
Furniture - Some good items may be accepted by your local charity shop and many can collect. Consider using your local online recycle group to find a new home for any unwanted items. There is also the Furniture Reuse Network who can make use of unwanted furniture - visit them at www.frn.org.uk. You can also take furniture to any of Norfolk County Council's Main Recycling Centres for reuse or disposal.Back to top ^
Garden Seeds - Share with other gardeners
Garden Waste - Compost at home to create a perfect recycling loop in your own back garden. Some councils offer an opt in garden waste collection scheme, and you can take garden waste to any of Norfolk County Council's Main Recycling Centres.
Gas bottles - Can be exchanged when you buy a new gas bottle. Empty gas bottles can also be accepted at all Norfolk County Council Main Recycling Centres.
Glass bottles and jars - If you live in Norwich City you can put all glass bottles and jars in your green box. If you live elsewhere, find a reuse for them or take them to a glass bank at your supermarket or local recycling centre.
Glasses/ spectacles - Some charities collect them for reuse in other countries - ask your supplier.
Hair - can be composted in your home composter.
Hazardous waste - these wastes are any solid or liquid material that may cause harm to people or the environment if not disposed of correctly. Click here for further information.
Holly and mistletoe - Compost at home or take green waste to your recycling centre. Some local councils accept holly and mistletoe in their brown bin garden waste service, call them for further details.
Household cleaners and chemicals - try to use all the product up, but if you have any left over to dispose of please see Hazardous Waste.Back to top ^
Inkjet cartridges - see Cartridges
IT equipment - see ComputersBack to top ^
Jars - Jars can be reused. If you are in to cooking, then use them for storing your home made jams and chutneys. You can also use them to store dried foods such as herbs and seeds. For the DIY enthusiast they can be reused for storing nails, nuts and bolts, for mixing paint or for cleaning paintbrushes. They can also be recycled at your nearest glass bring bank.
Jiffy bags - Save Jiffy bags and reuse them. Some Jiffy bags are made of paper with a paper stuffing, and can be composted at home.
Junk mail - Recycle using your kerbside collection (remember to remove any plastic wrappers). To remove your name from mailing lists and reduce the amount of junk mail coming through your door visit www.mpsonline.org.uk. Unaddressed mail such as flyers and circulars can be stopped by contacting Royal Mail.Back to top ^
Kerbside collections - ask your local council about kerbside collections in your area. They can provide you with details of what you can recycle and when your collection day is.
Kitchen scraps - Uncooked fruit and veg, eggshells, coffee grounds, and tea bags can all be composted at home. Some scraps can be fed to the birds, but the rest will need to go in your rubbish bin. Double wrap any food waste going in your rubbish bin to reduce any smells.
Kitchen cleaners - try to use up all the product. If you have any to dispose of please see Hazardous Waste.Back to top ^
Liquid food cartons - Take them to any of Norfolk County Council's Main Recycling Centres. Some councils also have bring banks for drinks cartons and many supermarkets are now doing the same.Back to top ^
Magazines - Some dentist and doctors surgeries may take your old magazines, if not they can be recycled through your local kerbside collection scheme.
Mattresses - If in good condition consider finding a new home for it through your local Freecycle group. Mattresses can also be accepted at your nearest Norfolk County Council Main Recycling Centre.
Medicines - Don't dispose of medicines through your rubbish bin or down the toilet. Return to a chemist for safe disposal
Metal - See Scrap metal
Mobile phones - Many charities and schools now collect old mobile phones for recycling to raise money and you can also take them to Main Recycling Centres.Back to top ^
Napkins - Compost your paper towels and napkins.
Nappies - Nappies can't be recycled. Why not try washable nappies instead, which offer many benefits for your child and will save you money - approx £500 for your first child.
Oil - Put engine oil in a secure container, and take to your nearest Norfolk County Council Main Recycling Centre to recycle the contents in one of the oil banks.
Old clothes - Take them to a textiles bank or your local charity shop.Back to top ^
Paint - Updated - from 1 April 2014 paint will not be accepted at any Norfolk County Council Main Recycling Centres. Please do not put liquid paint in your household waste kerbside collection. If paint is completely dried out it can be accepted in your rubbish collection. Metal cans may be recycled at Main Recycling Centres; plastic cans will be accepted in the waste to landfill container. Liquid paint will be accepted at Household Waste Amnesty days held annually at selected sites. www.norfolk.gov.uk/hazardouswaste Your local district, borough or city council may offer a hazardous waste collction service, but there may be a charge for this. Please contact them for further information.
Paper - Reuse paper where possible. Paper can be accepted in your kerbside collection for recycling.
Pesticides - try to use these up, but if you do have any for disposal you must not put them in your household waste bin as the contents will end up in a landfill not designed for such waste - see Hazardous waste.
Photocopiers - If working see if charities, community groups or schools want them. If not you may find a new home for it through your local Freecycle group, or the Eastex Materials Exchange.
Photographic chemicals - must be treated as Hazardous waste and not placed in your rubbish bin.
Plastic bags - Reuse next time you go shopping, or use as bin liners. Better still take a reusable cloth bag or bag for life to do your shopping and don't pick up plastic bags at all. Most supermarkets offer plastic bag recycling so make use of this.
Plastic bottles - Reuse drinks bottles. Some councils collect plastic bottles through the kerbside collection.
Plastic trays - Reuse as art materials. If not these need to go in the rubbish bin as they can't be recycled.
Plastic wrappers - Plastic wrappers can be added to the plastic bag recycling points in your local supermarket (where facilities exist) or you can save them up and take to Polyprint at Rackheath, Norfolk www.polyprint.co.uk (polythene only). The company will accept film on site, or you can post it to them. For further details visit http://www.polyprint.co.uk/pages/recycling.php .
Plastics (rigid plastics) - A mixed rigid plastics recycling trial is currently in operation at Dereham, Ketteringham, Caister and King's Lynn Main Recycling Centre Plus sites. Rigid plastics accepted include food containers, bottles, toys, empty paint pots, buckets, guttering, garden furniture and other similar items. Plastic bags, plastic film and polystyrene foam are not accepted (see plastic bags). Please note that this service is currently a trial and may be changed or removed without notice.
Polystyrene - Reuse as drainage material at the bottom of plant pots as it's very light and will make moving pots much easier.Back to top ^
Questions - If you have any questions on what can be taken to Norfolk County Council Main Recycling Centres call 0344 8008020. Or to find out what can be recycled in your kerbside collection call your district council.Back to top ^
Rags - Reuse as floor/dish cloths, paintbrush cleaners etc.Back to top ^
Saucepans - If in good condition consider donating to charity or finding a new home for them through your local Freecycle group. They can also be put in the scrap metal bin at your nearest Norfolk County Council Main Recycling Centre for recycling.
Scrap metal - scrap metal can be recycled at any of Norfolk County Council's Main Recycling Centres as long as it does not exceed the weekly allowance if it is DIY waste (eg radiators).
Sharps - Sharps should not be placed in your rubbish or recycling bin as they are extremely dangerous. Sharps include diabetic blood testing kits, insulin pen needles, syringe needles for medical injections, and needles from injecting drug users. Please make sure you dispose of these responsibly by asking your doctor for a sharps box and taking them to your doctor's surgery for safe disposal.
Shoes - If in good condition, consider donating to charity. You may also find a new home for them through your local Freecycle group. Some district councils also have shoe banks at their mini recycling centers.
Sweet wrappers - These cannot be recycled. Use them for craft making with children. Foil wrappers can be taken to Recycling Centres.Back to top ^
Tea bags - Put in your home compost bin.
Textiles - Wearable clothes and shoes can be donated to charity or put on your local Freecycle group. Look out for textiles banks located throughout Norfolk.
Tiles - Reuse broken tiles in mosaics, or put on your local Freecycle group. One 80 litre sack of DIY waste can be accepted at Norfolk County Council Recycling Centres per week free of charge. Larger amounts can be taken to one of the 7 main Recycling Centres at Caister, Hempton, Ketteringham, King's Lynn, Mayton Wood, Mile Cross or Thetford where a charge will be made.
Timber - Try finding a new home for your old timber through your local Freecycle group. One 80 litre sack of DIY waste is accepted at Norfolk County Council Main Recycling Centres per week free of charge. Larger amounts can be taken to one of the 7 main Recycling Centres at Caister, Hempton, Ketteringham, King's Lynn, Mayton Wood, Mile Cross and Thetford.
Tins - Food and drinks cans can be collected through your kerbside recycling collection. Large tins (e.g. old biscuit tins) are too big to be accepted in your local council recycling collection so please take to your Main recycling centre or reuse as storage containers.
Tools - Consider donating to charity, or advertise through your local Freecycle group.
Toys - If in good condition consider donating to charity. You can also advertise these through your local Freecycle group.
Tyres - Updated - From 1 April 2014 household motor vehicle and bicycle tyres will only be accepted at Norfolk Main Plus Recycling Centres. These are located at Caister-on-sea, Dereham, Hempton, Ketteringham, King's Lynn, Mayton Wood, Mile Cross and Thetford. Bicycle tyres will be accepted for free, but there will be a charge of £2.50 per motor vehicle tyre for disposal. There is a limit of 5 tyres per household, per month. Whilst on site disposing of four or more tyres, you may be asked to fill in a household waste disclaimer form prior to being able to deposit them. Alternative options include using the garage that fits tyres to your car - there is usually a small fee for this. You can reuse tyres to create compost bins, flower and plant containers and garden borders.
UPVC windows - Very difficult to recycle. Consider advertising on your local Freecycle group.Back to top ^
Vegetable peelings - Compost at home. Visit www.norfolk.getcomposting.com for a reduced price compost bin.Back to top ^
Walking sticks - Consider donating to charity or advertise on your local Freecycle group
Washing machines - If still in working order consider selling or advertising on your local Freecycle group for a new home. You can take an old washing machine to any of Norfolk County Council's Main Recycling Centres to be recycled. Or you can ask your district council to collect them for a small charge.
Water Filters - All components of the Brita cartridge are recyclable. Cartridges returned to Brita will be sent to their own recycling plant in Germany where the component parts are separated and processed for secondary use. Cartridges can be returned via www.brita.net/uk for local recycling points. All other brands of water filter should be disposed of in your rubbish bin.
Wrapping paper - Avoid sticky tape by using string or ribbons so that paper can be reused. Some paper bring banks in the county accept wrapping paper for recycling.Back to top ^
Xmas trees - Take your real trees to one of Norfolk County Council's 19 recycling centers for composting or contact your district council for more recycling points. Some brown bin garden waste collections accept Christmas trees cut up in the bin, contact your local council for further details. Plastic trees cannot be recycled, but if of a metal frame variety they can be placed in the metal bin at Main Recycling Centres.Back to top ^