In our kitchen right now we have many bins. We have the regular trash can and a second trash can we use for paper recycling. We also have a large ugly cardboard box and an ugly broken plastic bin: the ugly cardboard box is for glass recycling, and the ugly broken plastic bin is for plastic recycling (it pleases me that I’m also reusing an otherwise unusable bin—but it is so ugly).
This is too much ugly. I first thought we should get a line of matching trash cans of the “kitchen” variety that have a little swinging lid on top—but the problem is that the tallness of such trash cans doesn’t work with putting them in the car to bring them to the dump waste management station. Something short and wide like the ugly box/bin works much better. I was shopping for such a thing, and I’d had NO IDEA what a lot of options there were. Some don’t work for our household but might work for yours.
The Neu Home Organize It All Stainless Step-On Recycle Bin (photo from Amazon.com) is clearly gorgeous. It’s also clearly over $100. And, saddest of all, at 12 gallons total, it’s not big enough for our household.
Target carries a Smart Bin Waste Recycling Bin (photo from Target.com) that looks similar. It’s a few dollars less (before shipping) but holds 16 gallons instead of 12—and it qualifies for 10% off over $100, so you could save $10 if you could find something that cost….a penny. (I might in this case consider emailing customer service and asking if they could do something about that.)
The Flings Recycle bins (photo from Amazon.com) immediately caught my eye for their price ($16 for four) and free shipping. But then when they said “reusable,” I went “Wait, what?” It turns out these are mostly for parties, where you want people to recycle but you don’t want bins to store between parties. I don’t think they look durable enough to use as regular household bins—but I’m a little tempted to order just one to see what they’re like.
The Suncast Recycle Bin Kit (photo from Amazon.com) is most what I was looking for. And I love the customer-submitted images, because they tell me what I really want to know, which is HOW BIG ARE THESE BINS? I have trouble visualizing. (I only knew the 12-gallon Neu Home one was too small because the ugly broken bin we use is 14 gallons.) And the reviews are good. It’s still nearly $50, but that doesn’t seem so bad after looking at the other options, and also I like how these stack instead of living side by side on the already-limited floor space. I wish they weren’t so colorful (though the reviews note that the colors are more subdued in real life than in the photo), but the different colors will help me the kids remember which bin is which.
This set of four bins from Target (photo from Target.com) is another option that might be perfect: each bin is 18 gallons—larger than our big broken bin. The colorful Suncast bins don’t say what their capacity is, but we can get a general idea by the dimensions given in the description: Suncast are 24 x 18 x 17; the Target ones are 18 x 25 x 25—about 1/3rd bigger, each bin, than the Suncast.
Or Target has another set that’s 6 bins instead of 4, and clear instead of black and grey (photo from Target.com). In the photo they look a little less…garage-y than the set of 4, but maybe they’d look worse once they had visible trash (and the various leavings from previous loads of trash) inside. They have free shipping, which is nice, and a few commenters mention using them instead for things like winter outerwear. They’re nearly $80—but with free shipping.
Have you found a successful sorting system for recycling?