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Is It Okay to Crush Aluminium Cans Before Taking Them to Be Recycled?

July 15, 2020

Before you take your cans to the recycling depot in Adelaide, you might get tempted to crush them! Hold that urge, however ! Yes, there is something satisfying about crushing an aluminium can, before throwing it in the bin. Crushed cans are smaller in size. They will take up less space in your recycling bag. However, your Adelaide recycling depot might refuse to take crushed cans.


Keeping the cans in their regular shape makes their recycling process go smoother and more efficient. The cans will be easier to sort and count at your Adelaide recycling depot. Crushed cans, on the other hand, might end up in landfills. That would be a shame, as aluminium is one of the most efficiently recyclable materials in the market today.


To make sure your cans will not get rejected at the recycling depot, you should not flatten them. Here is why:


Heavy Bags


Crushing aluminium cans saves the space inside your recycling bag or box. It enables you to fit more cans in one bag and will make their transportation to your Adelaide recycling depot more efficient. However, for the staff there, the heavy, bulky bags will be challenging to lift and handle safely.


Sharp Edges


Flattened aluminium cans have sharp edges. These can easily make cuts in your skin as you are transferring them to your Adelaide recycling depot. The rough edges will also pose a health and safety hazard to the staff sorting and counting your cans at the recycling depot.


Difficult to Sort and Count


The staff at your Adelaide recycling depot should be able to count the number of cans you brought and give you your cash refund. When aluminium cans are crushed into a bale, they all lock into each other. It won't be easy to separate them to make the count.


At the recycling depot, beer cans need to be separated from soft drink cans. Each type has to be recycled separately as crushed cans are harder to recognise. It makes the separation process much harder.


Unrecognisable Shape


Many Adelaide recycling depots use single-stream systems. It means that everything is mixed together, then sorted automatically. The sorting depends mostly on the material and shape of each item. Crushed cans lose their unique shape. They can be easily mistaken for a non-recyclable material and get pushed out of the recycling pile.


Crushed cans are flat. The sorting machine at the recycling depot can easily confuse them with paper or cardboard. If a can gets recycled with other materials, it will contaminate the whole batch. The entire recycling load can end up in landfills.



At Thorntons Recycling, we offer a state-of-the-art recycling depot within ten minutes of the Adelaide CBD.


To make your strip quicker, you can prepare your cans beforehand. All you need to do is rinse out the cans and let them dry completely, before bringing them to our recycling depot. There, our staff will sort and count your recyclables and pay you immediately.


Save your cans from landfills and make some money on the side. Visit our Adelaide recycling depot today!




08 8443 7416