To not wash out recyclable containers??

(252 Posts)
DisgruntledGoat Tue 06-Sep-16 11:44:05

I think it's totally unnecessary to blast containers with water that are going to be cleaned and recycled anyway. My DH sometimes puts them through the dishwasher which drives me nuts. They flip the right way up and fill with dirty water and when you pull the rack out they spill water everywhere covering the clean stuff with the dirty water that's trapped inside. Plus you wouldn't wash out non recyclables to put them in the general bin?! AIBU or does anyone else put dirty recyclables straight into their recycling bins?

SoupDragon Tue 06-Sep-16 11:46:11

Meat containers are washed by spaniel.
Milk cartons are rinsed
Others go through the dishwasher and don't flip over when loaded correctly.

Otherwise they smell by the fortnightly collection date.

londonrach Tue 06-Sep-16 11:46:47

I dont, same reasoning as you. Waste of water if be rewashed.

90daychallenger Tue 06-Sep-16 11:48:49

I just put them straight into the recycling bins. I think it undermines the whole point of recycling them if you're going to waste resources (hot water and possibly detergent) washing them out.

Lifting the lid of a box full of dog food tins after a fortnight is quite an experience though envy

90daychallenger Tue 06-Sep-16 11:49:06

X-post grin

SukeyTakeItOffAgain Tue 06-Sep-16 11:51:07

I always rinse them or they stink.

80sWaistcoat Tue 06-Sep-16 11:51:22

milk cartons sitting unwashed for 2 weeks??....a quick rinse is preferable.

VimFuego101 Tue 06-Sep-16 11:51:38

I don't bother, I assume the recycling plant has a more water-efficient way of washing them than if I was to rinse them all out in my sink.

Seeline Tue 06-Sep-16 11:51:50

They are not re-washed. Unwashed pots, jars etc can pollute a whole cart-load of recycling meaning the whole lot goes to landfill. It was on the news the other day.
You don't need to wash them, just rinse them. Use the end of the washing up water, or just a quick run under the tap.

90daychallenger Tue 06-Sep-16 11:52:46

80swaistcoat I just stick the lid on

londonmummy1966 Tue 06-Sep-16 11:54:18

There was an article in the Times about this last week. Apparently a huge amount of recycling has to go to landfill because it has been contaminated by people not washing out containers. My guess is it depends on whether all your recycling is mixed together - rancid milk will presumably contaminate the newspapers in a mixed recycling bag. However if you have to separate out plastics paper glass and metal then not washing out a jam jar shouldn't really be a problem. But if it is going in the dishwasher (which presumably only goes on when there is a full load) I can't see how it would be wasting water?

Seeline Tue 06-Sep-16 11:54:24

link to the news item here

JacquesHammer Tue 06-Sep-16 11:54:51

Yup give them a quick rinse. Either in the tail end of the washing up water or as a dishwasher load.

Quite like doing this as it bulks out my weekly dishwasher load to full :D

Idratherbeaunicorn Tue 06-Sep-16 11:56:23

Personally I always at least rinse them out - a) so they dont get smelly and b) because I heard that they can pollute the whole lot of recycling!

ageingrunner Tue 06-Sep-16 11:56:45

They need rinsing out. I've only worked this out quite recently though, since I realised that they stink and get moldy.

80sWaistcoat Tue 06-Sep-16 11:58:30

seeline ours have to have the lids off (plastic jug types) otherwise they won't accept for recycling.

JammyDodger16 Tue 06-Sep-16 11:58:49

I wash them last in the dirty dish water so they're not 100% hygienically clean but are clean enough not to smell in the bin. No extra water needed

LurkingHusband Tue 06-Sep-16 11:59:24

There surely must have been a study which looks into the environmental trade off between rinsing recyclable materials, and the benefit of recycling them in the first place.

I have a sneaking suspicion that rinsing completely wipes out any benefit from the recycling (wasting water). Which then raises the question "Why bother recycling in the first place ?". a.k.a "Greenwash" smile.

If the recycling does need rinsing, it must be more efficient to rinse 10,000 households in one go, rather than 10,000 individual batches spread out over a fortnight ...

And to answer the OP, we don't rinse (see logic above). But then our tins/bottles/plastic recycling all go in a single wheelie bin which is kept in an outbuilding.

SoupDragon Tue 06-Sep-16 11:59:52

My council asks you to rinse.

ShotsFired Tue 06-Sep-16 12:00:37

I rinse mine in the sink after I've done the rest of the dishes - so no extra water being used. We don't generate that much so by the time the box was full it would be a maggoty stinking mess if we didn't. And I expect the local cats would have torn it apart too if there was food they might want still clinging on.

DisgruntledGoat Tue 06-Sep-16 12:05:27

Found this on my local council website. I stand corrected although I'm right about the dishwasher! smug face

Do I need to wash my recyclables before putting them in the bin or sack?

Yes please. Getting rid of any food or drink residue will help keep your recycling container clean and makes sorting it by hand a little more pleasant! Quickly rinse containers in the last of your washing up water to avoid using extra water and energy.

DisgruntledGoat Tue 06-Sep-16 12:10:31

I agree lurkinghusband and londonrach. It doesn't seem environmentally sound to me. And to wash them just so it makes it more pleasant for the people who have to sort by hand seems a bit precious - wear some thick marigolds?!

Seeline Tue 06-Sep-16 12:16:54

www.bbc.co.uk/iplayer/episode/b07qrkb5/britains-hardest-workers-inside-the-low-wage-economy-episode-1 The second part of this programme is quite an eye-opener. About low paid workers sorting rubbish for recycling.

noblegiraffe Tue 06-Sep-16 12:21:21

Rinsing out a pasta sauce jar or a milk bottle is fairly easy but I always dither about stuff like a massive peanut butter jar. A rinse does nothing, to remove the peanut butter would require a proper scrubbing and that doesn't sound quick or environmentally sound.

So what do you do with those sorts of things?

Marmalade85 Tue 06-Sep-16 12:22:18

People put rubbish in the dishwasher? shock

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