Modern refrigerators are far more efficient than anything available in the not too distant past. Many people are taking the opportunity to replace their old refrigerator with an energy efficient model. The question always arises, how to get rid of the old one? Without a doubt the most cost effective and environmentally sound decision you can make is refrigerator recycling.
Cost effectiveness and the environment are important, but there are other compelling reasons for refrigerator recycling.
It’s the law:
There are numerous laws both federal and state that govern the disposal of unwanted home appliances. Refrigerators are of particular interest as they contain refrigerants that must be removed and recovered under controlled environment.
The best choice for the environment:
It is not just the refrigerant that is an issue; a typical refrigerator contains many materials that can be effectively recycled. Older refrigerators, those that were manufactured ten plus years ago on average contain 120 pounds of steel. In addition, there are other materials that are recyclable. Older appliances, including refrigerators and freezers are close to 95 percent recyclable.
What is the process used for refrigerator recycling?
Recycling has become a high-tech industry, recycling can salvage a tremendous amount of material that can be used for other purposes. The USEPA (Environmental Protection Agency) have developed strict guidelines that recycling companies must comply with. When disposing of an unwanted refrigerator there are numerous materials that can be recovered.
Plastics and metal are by far the biggest recyclable in terms of volume.
Glass shelving and dividers can be crushed and sent to local glass plants
Oils are distilled and are reused in other industrial equipment; refrigerants are removed properly and disposed of in accordance with strict guidelines.
Thermostats and switches often contain mercury; these components are removed and salvaged by certified handlers. The safe disposal of mercury is extremely important.
There are a number of ways that a homeowner can properly dispose of an unwanted refrigerator or other appliance. Many retailers that are partners with the EPAs responsible appliance disposal program attend to disposal of old units on behalf of their customers. Other commonly used methods of disposal include programs available from the local utility; some utilities even go as far as giving a rebate in the form of a credit against your electric bill. Responsible metal recyclers have the facilities for proper recycling.
HC Metals, Inc is licensed by the Federal Government to process, reclaim and evacuate refrigerants; this is perhaps the most important part of responsible refrigerator recycling.