There’s no denying it – we just don’t know what to do with our old clothes. We’ve compiled a list of the top 5 searches on our recycling guide Garbage Guru in 2017, revealing our biggest recycling quandaries. Drum roll, please.

The top 5 searched items are:

  1. ripped or torn clothing
  2. aluminium foil
  3. wire coathangers
  4. pots and pans
  5. electronic waste.

Do you know how to recycle these properly? If not, don’t fear:

1. Ripped or torn clothing

  • Cut and chop and use it as rags. Old old t-shirts and socks, torn towels and linens, all make good cleaning rags. Pick flannel or other cotton fibre clothing because it is soft and absorbent and usually lint free. Use them to wash your windows, dust your bookshelves or clean your kitchen floor. No need to buy cleaning cloths.
  • Check with local charities if they’ll accept it. Some charities sell it on to companies that recycle it for industrial rags and textile byproducts
  • H&M also has a garment collection program for any clothing
  • Be mindful of how much clothing you buy. Charities and recycling companies no longer require as many donations as they once did.

2. Aluminium foil

  • It goes in your recycling bin
  • Small pieces of foil get lost in the recycling process. Wait until you have a lot of foil to recycle, roll it into a ball (must be at least as big as a tennis ball) and put it in your yellow-lidded bin
  • You can recycle aluminium foil with grease, but the same goes for foil as it does for containers – no need to rinse, but make sure you’ve given it a wipe.

3. Wire coathangers

  • Charities will accept items in good condition. Put them in your local collection bin or give them over the counter.
  • You could also post them up for free on Facebook swap groups, Gumtree or Freecycle.

S1 Recycling coat hangers

4. Kitchen pots and pans 

  • Find your closest scrap metal dealer
  • Every Wednesday, you can have household items, as well as whitegoods and some garden organics collected for free by us. Here’s what we can and can’t collect. The pots and pans would be classified as metal goods. Bookings are essential
  • If your pots and pans could be re-used by someone else, consider donating to a charity, or posting them up on Gumtree or Freecycle.

5. Electronic waste

Want more recycling help? Ask our recycling guide Garbage Guru specific questions.

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