Good Question: Should caps remain on bottles when they’re put in the recycling bin?
ROCHESTER, N.Y. — Should the caps remain on bottles when they’re put in the recycling bin?
A viewer, Carol, asked this question: “Are the screw-on caps supposed to be removed or can they be left on and still be recycled? I was told that any bottles that have the cap on are put in the landfill. Is this true?”
Here’s what Carol is talking about. Contrary to what she was told, you can put the cap back on the bottle before recycling. In fact, it’s encouraged.
Monroe County lists the items that are acceptable and unacceptable for mixed recycling. Clean cardboard boxes, newspapers, and junk mail are good to go. Foam, medicine bottles, and plastic bags shouldn’t be recycled.
So what about carol’s question about plastic bottle caps? Turns out, it’s frequently asked. The answer is yes. After rinsing, caps and lids should be reattached. If your plastic bottles still have liquid in them, they will not be accepted. The key here is that the items are clean, so make sure to rinse them out first.
If you have a question you’d like answered, send me an email to GoodQuestion@whec.com.