21 Things You Didn’t Know You Can Recycle

     Garbage. Americans produce more and more of it every year, when we need to be producing less. Even the most waste-conscious among us can feel overwhelmed by the amount of household waste that goes beyond what municipal recyclers and compost bins can handle. We’ve spent a lot of time investigating the state of waste management in our country, so we can explain how to get serious about the three R’s – reducing, reusing, and recycling — and divert more waste away from landfills. (To download the entire recycling issue of Green American, visit our archives page.)

1. Appliances: Goodwill accepts working appliances, or you can contact the Steel Recycling Instituteto recycle them.

2. Batteries: Try Battery Solutions to buy a product to put batteries in to ship away. Staples also has a national battery recycling program for individuals or your office. Some Ikea stores have recycling stations for them as well.

3. Cardboard boxes: Contact local nonprofits and women’s shelters to see if they can use them. Or, offer up used cardboard boxes at your local Freecycle.org listserv or on Craigslist.org for others who may need them for moving or storage. If your workplace collects at least 100 boxes or more each month, UsedCardboardBoxes.com accepts them for resale.

4. CDs/DVDs/Game Disks: Send scratched music or computer CDs, DVDs, and PlayStation or Nintendo video game disks to CDFixers for refinishing, and they’ll work like new.

5. Clothes: Wearable clothes can go to your local Goodwill outlet or shelter. Donate wearable women’s business clothing to Dress for Success, which gives them to low-income women as they search for jobs. Offer unwearable clothes and towels to local animal boarding and shelter facilities, which often use them as pet bedding. Consider holding a clothes swap at your office, school, faith congregation or community center. Swap clothes with friends and colleagues, and save money on back-to-school clothes, Halloween costumes, or any season you want.

6. Compact fluorescent bulbs: Call your local Ikea store–many have units for recycling florescent bulbs, along with batteries and conventional recyclables. Earth911 has a great tool where you can enter your recyclable and zip code and it will give you a list of places that will accept that item.

7. Compostable bio-plastics: Compostable bioplastics include those cornstarch utensils and specially marked cups, which won’t break down quickly in your home compost bin like your food scraps do. Find a Composter has a tool for finding municipal composters for these types of items.

8. Computers and electronics: E-Stewards has a tool for finding responsible recyclers for computing waste which can be toxic and hard to break down.

9. Exercise videos: If you’ve done the same workouts a million times, swap them with others at Video Fitness. If you’re done with them forever, contact your closest e-waste station and see if they will accept them. Policies change frequently and the magnetic tape in VHS makes them particularly difficult to recycle.

10. Eyeglasses: Your local Lion’s Club or eye care chain may collect these. Lenses are reground and given to people in need. Often eye doctors’ offices will collect them, or even local libraries. Glasses are most often donated as-is to someone with a similar perscription. Reading glasses and non-perscription sunglasses can often be donated as well.

11. Foam packing: Your local pack-and-ship store will likely accept foam peanuts for reuse. Or, call the Plastic Loose Fill Producers Council to find a drop-off site. For places to drop off foam blocks for recycling, contact the Alliance of Foam Packaging Recyclers.

12. Ink/toner cartridges: Recycleplace.org will pay a few cents for your old ink cartridges, up to $1 depending on the brand. If you bring your old cartridges to Staples, they will give you a $2 voucher you can use towards your new ink.

13. Oil: When the oil is being changed in your car, it can be re-refined and made into motor lubricants and other petroleum products. Earth911 has a tool to find which autoshops you can use to recycle oil in your zip code.

14. Phones: HopeLine is a program to provide cell phones to domestic violence survivors. Bring them to a Verizon or mail them in to donate. Office phones and corded phones can be recycled through Staples or another e-waste recycler.

15. Sports equipment: Resell or trade it at your local Play It Again Sports outlet or at Goodwill.

16. “Technotrash”: Staples’ e-waste program will take iPods, MP3 players, cell phones and chargers, digital cameras, PDAs, palm pilots, and more. Also, easily recycle all of your CDs, jewel cases, DVDs, audio and video tapes, pagers, rechargeable and single-use batteries, PDAs, and ink/toner cartridges with GreenDisk’s Technotrash program. For $11.95, GreenDisk will send you a cardboard box (or you can use your own) in which you can ship them up to 25 pounds of any of the above. Your fee covers the box as well as shipping and recycling fees.

17. Athletic and other shoes: MORE takes donations of lightly used running shoes which are resold to fund sustainable farming programs. Soles4Souls was founded after Hurricane Katrina, which gives shoes as a measure of disaster relief and to create micro-enterprises with a low cost product.

18. Toothbrushes and razors: Buy a recycled plastic toothbrush or razor from Preserve, a brand sold in many pharmacy stores as well as online. The company makes its products out of Stonyfield Farms yogurt cups and will take back its products to be made into plastic lumber. Bins that collect these and other products with the number 5 recycling symbol are collected in Preserve’s Gimme 5 bins, which are placed in 250 locations nationwide. They can also be sent in by mail.

19. Tyvek envelopes: Those tough, plasticky envelopes you get in the mail, those are Tyvek. The material is broken down and made into new plastics without consuming more oil resources. Quantities less than 25: Send to CFS Recycling, 337 A Industrial Drive, Petersburg, VA 23803. Quantities larger than 25, call 1-800/44-TYVEK.

20. Miscellaneous stuff: Get your unwanted items into the hands of people who can use them. Offer them up on your local Freecycle.org or Craigslist.org listserv.

21. Crayons: If you have broken crayons, or old mis-matched ones that are missing the box, send them to Crazy Crayons. This program collects crayons from around the country, melts them down, and sells 100% recycled crayons (in cute shapes and containers, too!).

How to prevent your car from overheating?

During this heat, you take precautions for your skin and body; but some people forgot about their vehciles. They get negative side effects from the heat. Below are some ways that you can take action against the heat and save that vehicle of yours.

  1.  Park in the shade

You can feel the temperature difference between the shade and the sun – and so can your car. Parking in the shade not only keeps you cool, but can prolong the life of your car. No shady spot? Use a sunshade to reduce heat inside the car.

  1. Tint your windows

A local dealership or auto body shop can apply tinted windows to help keep your car cooler, and protect your interior from sun damage.

  1. Use a sun shade

Keeping a sun shade in the car is helpful because you can’t always guarantee that you’ll find a shaded or covered area to park in. These UV heat shields will keep the interior from getting super-hot, plus it protects your interior from the damaging effects of the sun. You might even consider getting a custom-made sun screen that is designed to fit your make and model of car. These special shades can be more effective at keeping all of the rays out.

  1. Get rid of hot air

Closed windows trap hot air, and the glass serves as a conductor that helps heat up the enclosed space. Leave your windows open slightly so the air can escape – and if you have a sunroof, crack that, too. Make sure the opening is not large enough for someone to reach through. If you leave your windows cracked, remember to keep an eye on the weather – one sudden summer storm could lead to a soggy interior.

  1. Turn the floor vents on

Most people get in the car and turn the upper vents on “high” to get the air flowing. But you’re actually better off directing the air through the floor vents. Hot air rises, so switch to the bottom vents and put your blower on the maximum setting to push that air out. Then, once the car begins cooling, you can open the upper vents again.

  1. Use the fresh air setting on your A/C

Using the re-circulation setting means you’re just moving that hot, trapped air around your vehicle, so that’s something you want to use after your car has had the chance to cool down. Give it 10 minutes or so, then switch over.

  1. Keep your eye on the temperature gauge

 Located on the dashboard, the device has a needle that should always be pointing toward the center. If it points toward hot, pull over, turn off the engine and let the car cool down.

  1. Turning on the heat

Turning on the heat may be the last thing you want to do on a hot summer day, but it can pull hot air from the engine compartment and cool the engine. It won’t fix the underlying problem, but it’s a good measure for long drives.

  1. Add engine coolant

This is especially important in hot months. To check the coolant level, open the hood and locate the coolant reservoir. The coolant level is shown by indicator lines on the reservoir. If too low, simply add the appropriate amount of coolant and reattach the cap. Engine coolant is often sold as a 50/50 mix of water and coolant. You can also buy concentrated coolant and mix it yourself.

 Safety tip: Never add coolant to a hot engine. Wait for the engine to cool before removing the cap or pouring in coolant.

  1. Have your cooling system flushed by a mechanic

Even if you keep engine coolant at the right levels, it will eventually get dirty and need to be replaced. Flushing involves draining old coolant from the radiator, cleaning it with flush fluid and adding new coolant. Mechanics recommend a flush every 40,000 miles, but check your owner’s manual for the manufacturer’s recommendation.

  1. Consider replacing your battery

If your car battery is older than three years, it may not be providing the power it once did, so your car has to work harder and can overheat. Your mechanic can help you determine whether you may need a new battery.

If you find yourself in a situation where your car overheats, follow these steps to ensure you and your vehicle remain safe:

  • Pull over, park your car and turn off the engine as soon as possible. Let your car cool for a minimum of 10 minutes.
  • Open the hood of your car to allow the heat to clear out quickly.
  • Once your car has cooled off, turn the ignition to its first position (don’t start the engine). If you see that the temperature gauge is within a normal range and engine fluid levels are sufficient, try to start the engine.
  • If the engine makes unusual sounds or it does not start at all, it’s best to stay on the safe side and call for roadside assistance to have your car towed. This will allow for a mechanic to inspect it and make the necessary repairs.

What can cause your car to overheat?

Hot temperatures alone might not be causing your vehicle to overheat. If your car’s cooling systems aren’t functioning correctly, it can lead to serious damage to your engine and expensive repairs. Here are a few common engine problems that can cause your car to run hot that you should know about:

  • Coolant: Every car has a cooling system to help keep the temperature of the engine down. If your cooling system has a leak, blockage or pump malfunction, the coolant might not be able to circulate properly. Cooling system malfunctions aren’t just problematic when it’s hot out; very cold temperatures can cause coolant to freeze and prevent circulation.
  • Thermostat: Another possible issue could be a problem with the thermostat. A vehicle’s thermostat is responsible for regulating the amount of coolant flowing through the engine. A broken or malfunctioning one can easily cause your car to overheat.
  • Low Oil: A car’s oil does more than just lubricate moving parts. It also helps to remove excess heat from the engine. If your vehicle has low oil, it might be causing your car to run hot.
  • Radiator Fan: If your cooling fan isn’t turning on or running at the right level, it can case your car to overheat. Radiator fans usually run on electric motors, so any motor mechanical problems can lead to your fan not providing enough cool air flow.

Of course these aren’t the only possible problems that can cause a car to overheat. It’s a good idea to find a reliable mechanic who can diagnose and service your car, and get protection in case your car overheats while you’re on the road.

This information is from Nationwide Blog (Vehicle – Maintenace from June 4, 2017)

https://blog.nationwide.com/how-to-keep-your-car-from-overheating/

COOL CARS …… for HOT DAYS

Do you want to drive a COOL CAR this summer?

  Cool Car instrument panel thedetroitbureau_com

The simple task of performing preventative maintenance on your vehicle’s air conditioning system can increase your chances.

In this article found at www.VehicleMD.com we are reminded that proper care and maintenance can increase the life and reliability of your automobile’s A/C system when you most need it, during the hot summer months.

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AC button two lights

ARTICLE BY LAUREN HENDERSON – JULY EDITION OF VEHICLE MD

Longer days, outdoor concerts and the sound of neighborhood moms and dads calling their kids in for dinner; all signs that summer has indeed arrived. Most of us long for summertime all winter. When it finally gets here, it wastes no time reminding us sweltering heat and sunburns are also part of the deal. Even still, we put on ball caps, slap on sunscreen and stick to our convictions—summer is the best season of all.

Jumping in a lake or pool is the greatest—and arguably most fun—way to cool off when it’s hot outside. Unfortunately, life doesn’t stop when school lets out. You’ll need to rely on your vehicle’s air conditioning for a reprieve from the heat as you drop the kids off at various camps or drive to and from work. Nothing is worse than the car’s A/C being on and the vents blowing hot air. There are several things you can do—and ask about—the next time you take your vehicle in for service to make sure you stay cool all summer long.

Turn it on
Even when you don’t need A/C—like during the ridiculously cold winter we had last year—your vehicle still needs you to turn the cool air on for a few minutes per week.

The A/C system removes hot air in addition to pumping cold air into the vehicle. To do that, it must rely on several different mechanical components. Consistently running the A/C will ensure the hoses, valves and pumps—all essential parts of the A/C system—stay well lubricated and ready for use when temperatures outside begin to warm up.

Check the refrigerant
Refrigerant checks are not always included in your owner’s manual’s maintenance schedule. Make sure you ask your technician to check the refrigerant levels in your car. If you notice the air coming out of your vents isn’t cold—or isn’t as cold as you think it should be—recharging the A/C system with the appropriate manufacturer-recommended refrigerant and to the recommended capacity could solve the problem.

Get it serviced
Consider asking your technician about a full A/C service. It’s a good idea to have this completed once a year—ideally before the hotter months hit—so you don’t find yourself without A/C when you need it most.

Most standard A/C service checks include a visual inspection, temperature analysis, pressure readings, refrigerant top-off and a leak test to make sure all your system lines and hoses are leak free.

An A/C service can help you find the issue if you’re already noticing problems with your system or alert you of a problem so you can fix it before it becomes worse.

Cabin check
Special sanitizing treatments can help remove foul smells coming from your vehicle’s vents, so can a clean cabin air filter.

The cabin air filter can become clogged with annoying allergens in addition to dirt, dust and debris. Circulating pollen and harmful spores through your vehicle’s cabin air filter can be a problem for passengers with asthma or allergies.

A cabin air filter filled with dirt and dust can decrease the airflow coming from your vents, and, in extreme cases, it can even cause the A/C system to fail.

Check your owner’s manual to see when yours should be replaced. Usually it’s once a year. Ask your technician to check your cabin air filter to see if it needs replacement. You may be surprised at what you find trapped in there!

What’s new and cool
It’s always a good idea to stay familiar with new and important standards. After all, vehicles are historically one of people’s biggest expenses. If you’ve purchased a new vehicle in the past two years, your car may have a different kind of refrigerant inside its A/C compressor than the R-134a of years past.

According to Automotive News, automakers have begun using a new type of refrigerant called R-1234yf in later model vehicles like Cadillac XTS, Chevrolet Spark EV, Chrysler 300, Dodge Challenger, Honda Fit EV, Jeep Cherokee and Range Rover.

“Previously, vehicles used HFC-134a. HFC-134a is a high global warming potential material that is currently being phased out because it contributes to global warming,” said Luc Morvillier global business manager for Honeywell refrigerants.

Instead, manufacturers are adopting R-1234yf to comply with environmental regulations and the demand for higher efficiency. According to Honeywell, all new cars sold in Europe after January 1, 2017 must have an air conditioning refrigerant with a global warming potential below 150 starting in 2017.

The new R-1234yf refrigerant doesn’t only mean better things for the environment, it means good things for you, too. Even though R-1234yf promises lower greenhouse gas emissions and to linger less in the atmosphere, it still cools as effectively. This means you won’t have to sacrifice your comfort for the environment now or in the future.

“Car owners can rest assured, you won’t see a performance difference if your air conditioning system uses R-1234yf,” Morvillier said.

After extensive research and testing, Honeywell indicated that R-1234yf is safe for you and your vehicle’s passengers, too.

Ask your technician what kind of refrigerant your vehicle’s manufacturer recommends. Not only is it good to be a savvy consumer, it’s important to know what your car needs so you’re not wondering in the future.

Preventative maintenance is a must for every vehicle system. Whether it’s a tire rotation, oil change, fuel system cleaning or your vehicle’s A/C system, taking proper care of your car will increase the chance of your car taking care of you for a longer amount of time.

Summer brings with it lots of fun. Don’t let a bum A/C system get in the way. Find an open road and crank up the tunes—and the A/C.

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Info found at http://www.vehiclemd.com

Photo found at http://www.thedetroitbureau.com

Photo found at http://www.girardatlarge.com

After Life of Shredded Car

color car shredder

This interesting article was found at www.rpowersource.com

“The Value of Auto Shredder Residue” explains that the life of an automobile does not have to end at the crusher.

The Value in Auto Shredder Residue

In North America every year, almost 12 million

automobiles reach the end of their useful lives. As

new cars continue to be manufactured and sold, the

disposal of old vehicles represents a growing issue and

environmental threat. Fortunately, 75 percent of an

end-of-life vehicle (ELV) can be recycled.

Automobiles consist of primarily ferrous metals, such

as steel and iron as well as non-ferrous metals like

aluminum and zinc. Automobile recyclers have long

been able to recover up to 85 percent of a vehicle’s total

materials just by collecting the residual ferrous and non-ferrous metals

that are left behind after shredding. The remaining materials—a mixture

of plastics, wood, fabric and glass—are known as automotive shredder

residue (ASR) or auto fluff.

ASR usually consists of a Mixture of plastics, rubber; glass, wood

products, cloth, paper, foam, dirt and electric wiring, as well as, a variety

of ferrous and non-ferrous metals. The U.S. generates around five million

tons of ASR every year. While most ASR is currently disposed of in landfills,

up to 60 percent of auto shredder residue can actually be recovered as

reusable materials.

An ASR separation system can be a continuous dry process that

separates ASR into a mixture of polymers, wood, glass, metals, sand, rocks

and dirt. Once the oversized material is removed, the residue may go

through a shredder to further reduce its size. The ASR is then separated

with the use of a trommel screen before a magnetic separator recovers

the ferrous metals and an eddy current separator and other separators

recover the non-ferrous metals. The end product contains more than 90

percent of the recycled polymers that were present in the original ASR.

In 2013, the EPA announced a new interpretation of their regulations

on ASR that allows plastics to be recovered during the recycling process,

provided that the materials do not contain levels of PCBs exceeding 50

parts per million. This new interpretation has the potential to reduce the

amount of ASR that is consigned to landfills every year by more than one

million tons and may improve the material recovery rate for ELVs to more

than 90 percent.

Worldwide Recycling Equipment Sales, LLC in Moberly, Missouri,

can supply a full range of equipment to dry, sort and move automotive

shredder residue. Our new and used dryers are designed specifically to

dry ASR, making the material easy to transport, separate and handle. We

can size and build a dryer to best suit your specific project needs. In the

past, we have designed plants for industry clients that process 40 and 80

tons per hour.

Our Vulcan® Dryer Systems consist of a correctly sized drum and a

burner mounted to a combustion chamber. After passing through the

dryer, the dried material is discharged to a transfer conveyor for further

sorting and separation. The vapor from the process is pulled through a

cyclone that is specifically designed to deal with the fine ASR dust, as

well as a high-temperature baghouse which removes all fine particulates

from the vapor stream. All ductwork, cyclone and other high-wear areas

in the system have abrasive resistant plates to reduce lifetime wear and

maintenance costs.

Recycling the polymers and residual metals in ASR would save the

equivalent of 24 million barrels of oil each year and would reduce carbon

dioxide emissions by 12 million tons. As recyclers around the world strive

to recycle as much of old vehicles as possible, the value of auto shredder

residue is only increasing and growing more apparent.

For more information on ASR drying systems, contact Worldwide

Recycling Equipment Sales, LLC at (660) 263-7575 or wwrequip@

wwrequip.com. View our complete inventory online at www.wwrequip.com.

 Savannah Cooper

Writer/Copy/Social Media Specialist, Worldwide Recycling Equipment Sales, LLC

Photo created from combination Pintrest post and R.H. Willson

Green Your Spring Cleaning

MARCH GREEN TIPS

Green Laundry Soap

” Green Tips ” are simple steps you can take today to green your clothing, your home, your transportation and more! We encourage you to choose one step to get started and return for additional tips over time. If you’re up for a green makeover choose a specific category from the list of Monthly Green Tips and get started!

Buy green cleaners at your local natural foods store or via mail order or the Internet.

Make your own cleaners. To avoid toxic chemicals, consider making your own cleaners. Household items like baking soda, lemon juice, vinegar, and club soda, can be combined to clean everything from carpets to toilet bowls.

Use old clothing and sheets for dusting and cleaning rags, rather than paper towels.

Install a clotheslinin your backyard or basement, and let your clothes dry naturally.

Avoid cleaners that contain phosphates as a water softener. Phosphates appear in a number of cleaners such as some dishwashing liquids and promote rapid algae growth which pollutes the water supply.

If you use mothballs, consider replacing them with a more natural alternative. Try cheesecloth-wrapped cinnamon sticks, bay leaves, or whole cloves.

Eliminate the need for chemical fabric softeners by adding ¼ cup of vinegar to your washing machine’s rinse cycle.

Let your houseplants do the cleaning! Some houseplants—such as Boston ferns, English ivy, rubber plants, and peace lilies—can help clean your indoor air by absorbing toxic chemicals.

PHOTO: http://www.motherearthnews.com/ – fotolia/pixelot

Shine some light on your broken tail-light

We’ve all had those days when the last thing we need is something breaking, especially an essential part of your car! You need not worry, we’ve found some great tips and tricks to help you decide how to fix that pesky broken tail-light. If you plan on doing it yourself, we’ve got you covered.

 

DIY

Estimated Time: 15-20 minutes

  • First you are going to need a list of appropriate tools: sockets, wrenches, a screwdriver, a ratchet wrench, and potentially other elements, depending on your vehicle’s condition, make, model, etc. Also gloves can come in handy.
  • Go into the cargo/trunk space and remove the cover over the tail-light and turn signal. Once that cover is removed you can then safely and carefully remove the bulb. Be cautious of broken glass and be careful that the bulb is not too hot to touch.
  •  You can remove the cover by either twisting it off or using a wrench or screwdriver.
  • After replacing the new tail-light test it to see if it works.
  • Refer to your car’s handbook for any needed instructions

You can find used tail-lights at R.H. Willson-Used Auto Parts, where our employees will be more than willing to lend a helping hand.

Escape the Stress of Brake Failures

One of the most important components of a vehicle (at least in my opinion) is the brakes. Sure a car radio seems vital on your commute to work, but your brakes are the only thing standing in between you colliding with that giant truck in front of you. It’s a vital part of your car and just like the rest of your car it needs maintenance  Just the thought of a brake failure causes immense anxiety but with the right knowledge any one can avoid it. Just by keeping an ear out (literally) for automotive disrepair can help avoid some of the cringe-worthy damage that can be caused to both your car and your wallet. We’ve all heard that tell tale squeak of brakes being applied and that can be indicator number one to a worn out brake-pad. Every-time we step on the brakes, pressure is applied to the brake-pad, resulting in wear and tear to the brake-pads.

We found this great Graphic via How Stuff Works!

We found this great Graphic via How Stuff Works!

To ensure safety to both you and fellow drivers out there, head to your local Auto Repair shop and have your brakes checked out. Signs of an impending brake failure are; your car begins to glide to a stop and a squealing noise when pressure is applied to the brakes. You can avoid sky-high costs by going to the your local auto repair shop as soon as you see these signs. By using  used auto parts you can also cut costs without cutting quality. Keeping these tips in mind will not only make you knowledgeable but also might prevent you from being in an undesirable situation!