The sections below show what happens to each of the material types that are accepted at the Household Waste Recycling Centres (HWRCs) in Warwickshire.
Batteries are sent to H J Enthoven Ltd in Derbyshire to be treated and made safe.
Car batteries are sent onto Duston Oils in Northamptonshire for processing where the lead and plastic is separated and the battery acid made safe. The car battery you recycle will typically be used to make more car batteries.
Cardboard is sent on to Casepak in Leicestershire and Smurfit Kappa in the West Midlands (Judkins only) for recycling. Once free of contaminants it is sorted into different grades, baled and stored ready for delivery for the next step in the recycling process. Cardboard you recycle typically comes back as paper bags, paperboard packaging and new cardboard boxes.
Cartons are sent to ACE UK recycling mill in Halifax where they are baled and processed into a number of different products, ranging from plasterboard liner to high-strength paper bags and envelopes.
Clothes and shoes
Clothes, textiles and shoes are taken to Wilcox Textile Reclaimers. They are a family-owned group involved in the reclamation, processing and export of fine quality clothing to Africa, Eastern Europe and Asia. They work with charities, local authorities and waste reclamation companies and have developed new systems using a robot-controlled automatic sorting system. Wilcox collects around 26 million kilograms of textiles per year and around 90% of all products are exported. Those products that cannot be exported because of weight or style or damage remain in the UK to be used for their range of cleaning cloths and felt materials for automotive soundproofing.
In Warwickshire, 10% of all proceeds from your donated clothes, textiles and shoes go to the charity Guide Dogs for the Blind.
Cooking oil is sent to Living Fuels a state-of-the-art recovery facility in Thetford to be cleaned and reprocessed. Once recovered it becomes an environmentally friendly bioliquid used to generate carbon-neutral electricity for UK homes and businesses.
Small domestic appliances (such as vacuum cleaners, irons and hairdryers) and large domestic appliances (such as cookers and ovens) are taken to EMR Ltd in the West Midlands who test the goods for safety and suitability for reuse.
Those not suitable are broken down into their component parts for recycling. They are then made into new products.
Fluorescent tubes are sent to Wiser Recycling in Norfolk to have their mercury safely removed and the aluminium and steel separated. The high-quality glass cullet is treated and used within fibreglass and block manufacture.
Aluminium foil is sent either to EMR Ltd in the West Midlands, R&C Metals in Evesham and White Metals in Coventry where it is processed and cleaned. It is then re-melted to be made into new aluminium products such as car parts.
Did you know?
Aluminium is 100% recyclable and can be melted down and reformed many times over.
Food and drink cans
Steel and aerosols are separated from the aluminium cans using a magnet. They are baled and processed by type. Aluminium items can be recycled indefinitely, and quickly back into their original form. Steel can also be recycled time and time again without loss of quality. Once processed new steel products such as bikes, cars, bridges and paperclips are made as well as new food and drink cans.
Fridges and freezers
Fridges and freezers that are not suitable for reuse are sent to EMR Ltd in the West Midlands to be dismantled to elemental compounds such as copper, aluminium and steel. Over 80% of the material in each fridge is recycled into new products.
Furniture suitable for reuse is sent on to community reuse schemes to be repaired and reused.
Furniture that is not suitable for reuse is either recycled with the wood or scrap metal or sent to landfill at Bubbenhall or Ling Hall in Warwickshire.
Garden waste from the household waste and recycling centres is taken to open-air composting facilities where compost can be produced in less than eight weeks. The waste is piled into long rows (windrows) which are turned regularly to provide the perfect conditions for the rapid production of nutrient-rich compost. The end product is used by both farmers and Warwickshire homeowners.
Garden waste that is collected (alongside food waste) from your kerbside collection is taken to one of two special in-vessel composting plants in either Ufton or Corby where it is mixed and shredded and then composted at temperatures above 70C to speed up the process and kill any harmful bacteria. When finished it is screened and used on local farmland.
Glass is sent to Berryman Glass Recycling processing facilities in Yorkshire. Different colours of glass are separated using lasers. It is crushed to become glass cullet. Any contaminants such as paper and metal are removed. The cullet is mixed with raw materials and melted in a furnace. The molten liquid is moulded or blown into new glass bottles and jars.
Hardcore and rubble
Hardcore, rubble and soil are sent to Brinklow Quarry to be separated and reused, except Judkins where it goes to Bubbenhall or Crown Waste in Nuneaton. The soil is often used as topsoil when capping off and landscaping landfill sites. The hardcore is broken down and used as aggregate in the construction industry, often in road building.
Items that are deposited in the household waste bins are either sent to landfill at Bubbenhall or Ling Hall in Warwickshire or sent to energy from waste (EfW) facilities run by Veolia in Staffordshire or CSWD In Coventry.
Did you know?
To combat the cost of disposal Warwickshire is now sending more household waste to EfW than Landfill.
What is EfW?
EfW is a technology that burns household waste at high temperatures under carefully controlled conditions to produce electricity which is mostly fed into the National Grid.
Mobile phones are recycled at all Warwickshire household waste and recycling centres where they are either sent on for reuse or shredded for recycling. The proceeds of which are sent to Warwickshire Air Ambulance Service charity.
If it is a small amount it can be dried out in the tin and go in the general waste. Please see our A-Z of Recycling for further guidance.
Paper is sent to Casepak Ltd in Leicestershire to be sorted, heated and pulped ready to be re-made into new recycled paper products.
Paper can be recycled into numerous products such as egg cartons, paper plates, construction paper, phone books or even cat litter.
Plasterboard is sent either to Clews Recycling in Rugby or Arrow Gypsum Recycling in Norton (Judkins only) where it is processed into new gypsum-based products, which can be used in the plasterboard and cement industry.
Plastic currently goes to Casepak.
Did you know recycling one plastic bottle saves the same amount of energy needed to power a 60-watt light bulb for six hours?
Printer cartridges suitable for reuse are sent to Zero Waste Recycling.
Scrap metals are sent to either EMR Ltd in the West Midlands and Whites in Coventry (Facebook). At these facilities, the metal is separated into different types to then be melted down. It is then recycled into a wide range of new metal products. Virtually all metals can be recycled into high-quality new metals.
Street sweepings currently go to Suez Coleshill.
TVs and monitors
TVs and monitors are taken to EMR Darlaston. Those suitable for reuse are tested and sold on. Those not suitable for reuse are broken down into their component parts for recycling. Glass in the screens can be reused in the manufacture of new televisions and monitors. Other materials such as ferrous metals and non-ferrous metals are recovered for recycling too.
Used engine oil
Used engine oil is sent either to Duston Oils in Northamptonshire. Water, chemicals and other impurities are extracted from the oil to refine it for reuse as new engine oil or as a fuel for industry.
Wood and timber
Wood and timber goes to Suez Packington.