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The quickest way to get rid of… well, anything is to throw it away. But now that we’re enlightened about how all our old stuff has turned into mountains of trash on every continent and islands of garbage in our oceans, we should all think twice before we toss.
Most things have the potential to be recycled one way or another. Furniture and other large products aren’t as easily pitched into a bin for delivery to the right recycling facility, though. So, how do we recycle our old products like furniture, fitness gear, and outdoor equipment? We’ve gathered some resources to help with recycling these kinds of old household products.
Upholstered pieces, bed frames, mattresses, tables, and the like are best handed off to another household that can use them. But when pieces are too worn for continued use, they can’t be donated. Many counties offer services for pickup or drop off of heavy furniture and a visit to Recycle Nation’s Location Search page can help with zeroing in on local solutions for specific materials.
If a piece has antique or “retro” appeal, even if it seems too worn out to repair, it may be worth a try to contact local furniture upcyclers and resellers who know how to refurbish them. Sometimes posting the item with the headline “FREE” on social media or local neighborhood websites is all it takes to beckon an upcycler to pick it up off the curb for you.
Used fitness gear, small kitchen appliances, and outdoor tools like lawn mowers can be parted out and recycled or sold for scrap, but most of us don’t know our way around these pieces to do that on our own. Check with a local or big box hardware store to see if they offer services for recycling or collecting these kinds of goods. If they don’t, they can probably point toward local companies that do.
For more information about recycling in specific states, visit our Recycling Resources page! Also, try calling 211, a community information number that’s available in each state, to ask about recycling services for large items.