Aerosol cans are made of recyclable metals, such as aluminium and steel. Most aerosol cans have a composition of 60% tinplated steel and 40% aluminium. Research shows that UK residents use over 600 million aerosols each year, making them an excellent recycling source.
Some aerosols contain liquid, while others have gas, which is pressurized with a propellant. Therefore, it is crucial to dispose of aerosol cans properly because the liquid or gas can pose threats under certain conditions. For instance, aerosol content can cause an explosion when placed near a heat source like a stove. Read on!
Step 1: Empty the Cans
Before you throw your aerosol cans in the garbage bin a recycling collection, make sure they are empty. Shake each can to ensure their emptiness, and if there is any liquid inside, try to get rid of it. Otherwise, disposing of a partially filled can pose dangers to your health and the environment.
Step 2: Do not modify the Cans
Experts advise refraining from modifying the aerosol cans. Most recycling centres in the UK do not accept altered or modified cans. So, leave the can as is to get rid of it without any problems.
Another reason not to modify or tamper with the cans is to avoid an explosion. Do not puncture the cans or expose them to a heat source. Avoid removing the spray nozzle even if is it made of plastic material. If the can’s lid is made of plastic, you can remove it for recycling.
Step 3: Watch out for the Contents
Aerosol cans are created differently, meaning some of them may contain hazardous material. It is challenging for many UK homeowners to dispose of aerosol cans with dangerous material in the regular recycling bin. Therefore, it is wise to check your cans for indications to determine whether they contain hazardous waste.
Some aerosol cans have specific disposal directions so you should follow them to avoid complications. In some situations, you have to take the aerosol cans to a local hazardous waste disposal centre.
Contact a recycling centre in your local area if you are unsure about how to dispose of or recycle specific aerosol cans. While talking to the recycling centre staff, make sure you let them know about the cans’ contents.
Step 4: Contact Your Local Recycling Centre
In the UK, each council has its own recycling policy. Some local councils do not allow aerosol cans recycling, while others permit them. Look up your local council’s regulations by calling them or check the policies online. It is essential to know the laws before you get rid of aerosol cans.
If the recycling centre does not accept aerosol cans, you can simply throw them in the regular trash. Remember, before you do this, make sure all cans are empty and do not contain hazardous material.
Like cooking oil sprays, aerosol cans have the potential to cause accidents because they are pressurized. Disposing aerosol cans is not easy for many people, especially if they don’t know the law. Follow the steps given above to get rid of aerosol cans.