Holistic Guide to Different Types of Plastic Recycling Materials

Holistic Guide to Different Types of Plastic Recycling Materials

By AAA Polymer | Plastics Recycling

Mar 05

Today, there are several plastic types of recycling materials —thanks to countless innovations and advancements in the recycling industry. However, at AAA Polymer we primarily focus on recycling plastic stretch films and materials comprised of: 

While plastic stretch films and plastic stretch wraps are the primary types of materials we recycle, other facilities do collect different types of plastic recycling materials. Let's take a step back and look at the holistic world of plastic recycling material. 

#1 Polyethylene Terephthalate (PET) or PETE

Commonly used in perishable food containers, beverage bottles, and mouthwash, PET is one of the most common consumer plastics used and it's highly recyclable. A few examples of materials made from PET include:

  • Cosmetics
  • Carbonated soft drinks
  • Detergents
  • Pharmaceutical products
  • Produce
  • Oils

PET types of plastic recycling materials do typically absorb odors and even flavors from the liquids and food stored in them. Many consumer plastic recycling programs are set up to accept this type of plastic, but AAA Polymer isn't currently accepting PET. The programs that do accept PET plastics can recycle them into pellets that can be used to make furniture, carpet, and fiber for winter garment. 

#2 High-Density Polyethylene (HDPE)

Another very common type of recycling material is HDPE. These plastics have a very low risk of leaching into liquids or foods. Because of this, you'll commonly find HDPE plastic resins in:

  • Freezer bags
  • Shopping bags
  • Ice cream containers
  • Milk bottles
  • Shampoo
  • Juice bottles
  • Buckets
  • Detergent and chemical bottles
  • Crates

And once HDPE has been recycled, it can be made into materials like plastic fencing, bottles, pens, lumber, and even picnic tables. 

#3 Polyvinyl Chloride 

Polyvinyl chloride is commonly called PVC. This material is commonly found in medical equipment, plumbing pipes, food wrap, plumbing tiles, and more. Although PVC isn't as recyclable as other materials, PVC can be recycled. Very specialized programs recycle PVC into roadside gutters, paneling, and flooring to name a few. 

#4 Low-Density Polyethylene

At AAA Polymer, one of our top recycling materials is low-density polyethylene plastics. As a very safe and clean plastic, LDPE is found primarily in plastic stretch wraps, stretch films, frozen food containers, and certain bottles. Once recycled, LDPE plastics can be transformed into a myriad of new materials, including: 

  • Packaging, film, and bags
  • Bottles and caps
  • Toys
  • Pipe and cable jacketing
  • General commodity items
  • Plumbing pipes, plumbing joints, and irrigation components

#5 Polypropylene 

Polypropylene or PP is one of the most versatile types of plastics on the planet and is the second-most commonly recycled type of plastic material. It's found in medicine bottles, Tupperware, yogurt containers, and syrup bottles. Considering the exceptional flexibility of polypropylene, it can be recycled back into a range of products, including:

  • Dishware,
  • Clothing fibers,
  • Food containers,
  • Industrial fibers,
  • Speed humps,
  • Compost bins, and
  • Gardening equipment.

#6 Polystyrene

Polystyrene or PS is commonly referred to as styrofoam. As an easily recognizable plastic, styrofoam is huge in packaging, disposable dinnerware, beverage cups, insulation, and egg cartons. However, polystyrene is notorious for poor recyclability and leaching. Although some programs accept styrofoam, it's not widely accepted or considered a plastic recyclable material. When it is recycled, it can be made into license plate framing, insulation, and school supplies. 

7 Other or Miscellaneous Plastic Recycling Materials

In addition to numbers one through six, there is a seventh category of plastic recycling materials. This group is more like a hodgepodge of plastics, including polycarbonates. Nylon compact discs, computer casing, and sunglasses may contain #7. In either case, plastics in this class are very difficult to recycle and usually will contain the toxic chemical BPA. This chemical is a noted hormone disruptor that can lead to serious health problems. In event #7 plastics are recycled, they are usually turned into specialized products like plastic lumber. 

Turn Plastic Types of Recycling Materials into Real Savings!

At AAA Polymer, we specialize in helping warehouses and distribution centers create savings through commercial recycling programs. We help these facilities establish stretch film recycling programs and commercial recycling programs that remove large amounts of plastic types of recycling materials from the waste stream. 

In doing so, we'll help you reduce the number of trash pickups required, which equates to direct savings. Best of all, our commercial recycling program doesn't cost our client facilities anything. 

Contact AAA Polymer for Commercial Recycling Savings

Stretch films and stretch wraps are usually the largest waste component of any warehouse or distribution center. And when we come in and establish a commercial stretch film recycling program, our clients typically realize immediate savings. Instead of wasting financial resources on hauling and disposing of plastic types of recycling materials, AAA Polymer can show you how to turn your trash into savings. In doing so, you can also help protect the environment and make a direct impact on your local community. 

Ready to learn how we can help you turn certain types of plastic recycling materials into immediate savings? Contact AAA Polymer today.

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