How Clean Does My Recycling Need To Be?

Pizza box suitable for recycling © Amy Nancarrow

Pizza box suitable for recycling

Pizza box not ready for recycling © Amy Nancarrow

Pizza box not ready for recycling

One of the most common questions about recycling is how clean do jars, cans and pizza boxes need to be before they can go in the recycling bin.

Small amounts of food left don’t interfere with the glass and steel recycling process. Scrape all the solid food scraps out of jars and cans and then put them in the recycling bin. If you’re concerned about having left over food in the bin you can lightly rinse out your jars and cans. Using left over washing up or rinsing water is best as there’s no point wasting good water just to wash recycling.

Before putting pizza boxes in your home recycling, check whether your council accepts them – visit to find out. If your council does accept them, just scrape out all the solid food scraps. If the pizza box has a removable cardboard mat take that out too and put it in the garbage. There should be no solid food left in the box.

If your council doesn’t accept pizza boxes they can go into compost bins or make good covers for worm farms.



Recycling: How to get your motivation

I found this really great article on Rethink Recycling and wanted to share. If you’re finding it difficult to commit to recycling try these simple tips.

Resolve to Stop Wish Cycling in the New Year

Original Post from Rethink Recycling on January 04, 2016


Happy New Year! Do you have any resolutions this year? Will you get that gym membership? Will you commit to reading more books or learn a new language?

Consider adding a few green resolutions to your list. Add a room in your home to your recycling routine by collecting recyclables in the bathroom, laundry room, home office, bedroom, or other areas where you generate paper, bottles and other recycling. Learn more about recycling to make sure that recyclables stay out of the garbage. Most importantly, turn your “wish cycling” into recycling!

Wish Cycling?

Have you ever tossed an item into a recycling bin that you were not 100 percent sure was recyclable, just wishing it would be alright? Many items are recyclable, but some items that are tempting to throw in your recycling cart are actually problematic at recycling facilities. These can damage equipment or contaminate other materials, lowering the value of recyclables. The Star Tribune took an in-depth look at some problematic items, including plastic bags, food pouches, loose shredded paper, sharpstires, and more.

Recycle with Certainty

Quit wish cycling this year by refreshing your knowledge of what’s accepted in your recycling program at home. Most haulers accept:

Check with your city or hauler for a list of materials specific to your recycling program. Also remember that many items can be recycled, just not in your recycling cart at home. Find options at Rethink Recycling.

Plastic Shopping Bags       

Plastic shopping bags are one of the hardest materials for recycling facilities to handle as they tangle in machinery, clogging machines and stopping the recycling process for hours at a time. Fortunately, plastic bags can easily be recycled at drop-off locations. Plastic bags are accepted at various retailers including Byerly’s, Cub Foods and Target as long as they are clean and dry. Find additional retailers through the Recycling Association of Minnesota’s It’s in the Bagprogram. Don’t put plastic bags in residential recycling bins or carts.

You can reuse plastic bags as garbage bags or to pick up pet waste. To limit the amount of plastic bags you end up with, use reusable shopping bags and avoid products with excessive plastic wrapping.


Most likely, there are items in your home that contain batteries. Many household batteries, including small button batteries found in greeting cards and watches, as well as rechargeable batteries contain hazardous materials that can harm the environment if not properly recycled. Their small size makes them hard for machinery to sort at recycling facilities, so they can’t be placed in residential bins.

Find drop-off options for rechargeable batteries through Call2Recycle, and check with your county for additional drop-off recycling options.


Styrofoam, also known as polystyrene, is a petroleum-based plastic that is used in a variety of products like packing supplies, cups and other containers. The only drop-off site for foam blocks is at the Coon Rapids Recycling CenterLimit the amount of Styrofoam you acquire by bringing your own lunch or cup instead of getting to-go boxes or Styrofoam cups. Try out some interesting re-use options including making it into decorations or seedling starters.


FAQ’s About Dumpsters??? We have answers

Dumpster FAQ’s

What are the best uses for roll off dumpsters?

The two primary uses for roll off dumpsters are large cleaning projects and construction projects. Here are some examples:

basement, attic, and garage clean outs
large spring cleaning projects
yard waste removal
cleaning out a house prior to a sales listing
kitchen and bath remodeling projects
replacing siding or windows
commercial construction

What are the common dumpster sizes and which size should I rent?

Dumpsters are measured by the number of cubic yards a container will hold, a 10 yard dumpster will hold 10 yards of waste materials. The dumpster sizes we offer are 8 yds, 10 yds, and 15 yds.

Estimating the amount of debris a project will generate can be tricky, it’s usually best to just give us a call and we can help you estimate the best size for your project. Also, here is a page were we have provided more in depth information on estimating dumpster sizes .

What things impact how much it will cost to rent a dumpster?

The biggest impact on the cost of renting a dumpster in Northern Colorado is where you are located and how long you would like to keep the dumpster. Please call our office for a specific price.

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How do I compare different price quotes for dumpsters?

Most dumpster rental companies charge a flat fee for specific sized dumpster, a specific number of days, and for a certain amount of weight. For an example, you would receive a bid of $400 for a 15 yard dumpster, for 7 days, and not to exceed 3 tons.

However, some dumpster companies may have additional fees for, delivery, landfill costs, fuel charges, etc. So make sure when you are quoted a price it is a flat fee for a specific size, time, and weight. Then comparing prices will be very straight forward.

Even with flat fee pricing extra charges may apply if you need the dumpster longer then the scheduled rental period. There is usually a daily fee for extending the rental period that is typically between $5 and $10 per day.

Additionally, if you exceeded the stated weight limit there will be additional fees. If the dumpster exceeds the agreed upon tonnage there will be an additional weight fee that typically ranges from $30 to $100 per ton of overage, depending on the local landfill fees and taxes.

What are the best steps to take if I need to rent a dumpster?

The process of renting a dumpster should be simple and straight forward if you’re dealing with a dumpster rental company that is committed to providing straight forward pricing and a high level of customer service. Here are 4 steps that should make the process a simple a possible:

1. Take into consideration the amount of debris you need to dispose of, if you are unsure, be prepared to describe your project to the dumpster rental companies you speak with so they can assist you in picking the right sized roll off canister.

2. Contact one or more dumpster rental companies to inquire about pricing and availability. Be sure to confirm that the quoted rate is all inclusive for the stated time period, dumpster size, and weight limit.

3. Schedule a delivery date and provide any specific details about where you would like to have the dumpster placed on site. If you will need the canister during a busy time, like spring, it is best to schedule as far in advance as possible.

4. When you’re done loading the dumpster, particularly if you are done before the scheduled pick up time, call the company and let them know you are ready for pick up.


Foil Coffee Bags: Are they recyclable?

We love coffee at Dumpster Rental and thought it would be fun to share with you what we found out about the nice bags we buy our coffee in.

Paper coffee bags can be recycled or composted but you can’t throw the foil coffee bags in the recycling bin but there are several fun things you can do with them rather than throw them in a landfill. We like to clip the wire fastener off the top of coffee bags and re-use it as a bag fastener. There is a company based in Montrose, CO that turns your trash into a beautiful tote bag, Trashe Bags, check it out and let us know what you think of these cute bags. What a great company, they also repurposes plastic woven pet food bags, and provide jobs for people with disabilities!

You can also check out the great ideas on Pinterest for Coffee Bag Crafts

And we love what they are doing with the foil bags here, this is a great way to share plants from your yard with your friends.

Photo source


Recyclable yes! Recycle your foil coffee bag as a planter




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Littering causes a variety of issues beginning with a very negative environmental impact but also consider the impact on our community’s good health and quality of lifestyle. We all hate seeing someone through trash or cigarette butts out of the car window, we believe it is crucial to keep northern Colorado clean not only for ourselves, but for future generations as well. Littering causes a long list of unfortunate issues. The carelessness of littering negatively impacts the environment while money is also wasted as taxpayers money employs people to pick up trash. Litter accumulates and develops a breeding ground for bacteria while attracting vermin, developing public health issues.

Education: Dumpster Rental encourages others to not litter as well as spread the word of its negative effects. Refrain from overfilling garbage bins and dumpsters. Wind can easily blow an overfilled bin’s lid open and disperse the trash throughout the neighborhood. Proper disposal of trash in a confined space prevents the possibility of trash spreading. According to a KAB (Keep American Beautiful, Inc) study, “Most littering behavior—81%—occurred with notable intent. This included dropping (54%), flick/fling of the item (20%), and other littering with notable intent (7%).

Screenshot 2015-03-16 12.03.00 Cigarette butts, cans and other light-weight waste materials can be easily picked up by the wind and before you know it your trash is on its way to Kansas so be sure to always use the correct waste and recycling bins. When your in the park use the provided trash and recycle bins and if you head up to the mountains leave the area better than you found it and take your trash and any trash you happen to find  home to dispose of.

Screenshot 2015-03-16 13.06.00 Consider keeping a small trash bag in your car that can easily be emptied into your trash at home and don’t forget to recycle what you can. Trash can for your car can be found at