If you’re wanting to be more eco-friendly but are new to it, it can seem daunting to learn how to recycle your junk. But with a little bit of knowledge, you’ll be ready to join the green revolution. Read on to learn more about how to recycle in New Jersey after you wrap up a home junk cleanout.
Put Together a Recycling Plan
Research where, when, and what kind of recycling and waste management services your town offers. Print out an aerial map image of your town and have your family find and mark your city’s recycling locations on the map. Create a key that tells you that address, days/hours of operation, what kinds of items they recycle, and if it is free or costs a small fee.
If you’re lucky, your town or city will have curbside recycling with a personal recycling bin for your household that can be picked up by your city municipal service employees and then taken to a recycling facility.
Reduce, Reuse, Recycle
Don’t forget that recycling alone isn’t the only thing you can do to converse your resources, save money, and help the environment. You can get as creative as you like with it, too. Make art out of used products, rinse and reuse your sandwich bags, repurpose items you would normally throw away as something else. Websites like Pinterest are a great resource to go to for inspiration.
There are many easy ways we can reduce our use of resources starting immediately.
Conserve energy by remembering to turn off lights when they are not in use and unplug devices such as cell phone chargers when they’re not in use. It may seem small, but phantom energy accounts for a lot of power usage.
Making sure to keep the thermostat at an appropriate temperature for the season is a huge help when it comes to conserving energy.
Next time it’s time to change your lightbulbs, opt for an energy-efficient model.
You can conserve water by turning the faucet off while brushing your teeth and choosing a quick shower over a bath when possible.
The possibilities are truly endless. Try to think of things destined for the trash or landfill and see if you can get any more use of them.
Cut old towels into smaller cleaning rags.
Use those old grocery store bags that even the best of us seem to accumulate at an astonishing rate! They are the perfect size for bathroom trash cans. They can also be used to clean your showerhead. Keep a few in your car so there is no excuse for littering!
Every city is different so you will need to do a little investigating of what your city will accept in the recycle bin and what items, like appliances, can actually be recycled or need to be disposed of in a different fashion. If you don’t have a service at your home, there are many stores and places that will accept items for recycling. Make it a point to save the items and take them when you’re nearby. Don’t forget that your junk mail is something that is of better use in the recycling bin than the trash can.
Setting Up Your Recycling Area
The good news is that your recycling area doesn’t have to be huge, but it does depend on how often you will be able to take out your recycling or if it is picked up each week at home.
To set up your recycling area, reuse some cardboard boxes. You can wrap them in old newspaper or comic strips to decorate and hot glue on scrap pieces of paper and cut-outs from magazines to depict each box’s use.
Make sure you create an easy-to-read label for which plastics or items are contained in the box. Make sure they are items that can be recycled together without additional sorting. If they need to be sorted separately, be sure to create a space for the separations. That way, it’s easy to make sure it gets to the right place.
Make recycling a part of normal life. One of the most successful ways to encourage your family to recycle even after the initial interest and fun has faded is to make sure it is a part of everyday life.
A great way to do this is to get together every evening after dinner and sort the day’s waste into its respective recycling zone and scrape the food scraps into the worm farm or composting bin. This way, your family will see firsthand how recycling and reusing is just a part of normal life and is just as important as putting away the clean dishes or folding laundry to be put away.
Normalcy also helps to make things feel less daunting and easier to accomplish. Soon your whole family will be scraping their plates to feed and check on the worms just as much as giving a treat to the dog, especially if it’s unwanted vegetables after dinner!
While not exactly recycling per se, donating useful items you no longer need can be a great way to put these items in the hands of people who can use them while also keeping them out of the landfill. Make sure to only donate items that are functional and not badly damaged.
One added benefit for you about donating items is that the thrift store or pickup center you donate it to can give you a receipt you can use to get a tax deduction on your personal taxes for the year. So be sure to ask for it!
Have a Yard Sale!
If you have too much stuff you don’t use and don’t need but might be useful to someone, else, have a yard sale and make a little bit of pocket change in the process. This not only helps the environment by keeping the item in use but also benefits you financially and you’re neighbors
Recycling Is Easy to Do Together
Recycling is more than just easy for everyone. It is actually fun, especially when your loved ones can see how recycling benefits their surroundings firsthand.
Take a few of these tips or start at the top and work your way down. Not only will you derive tremendous satisfaction and meaning from learning these steps, but adopting these habits will make your whole household and community a better, greener, healthier place for many years to come.
Need Help Recycling or Hauling Away Your Junk? Contact the Experts
At Junk-a-Haulics, we specialize in hauling away junk throughout New Jersey. Call us today for help recycling your or disposing of junk.