Where Do Recycled Manufacturing Materials Come From?

March 10, 2022 12:00 am Published by Leave your thoughts

Recycled manufacturing materials are made from a variety of formerly used products. The products are collected and shipped to a recycling plant that breaks them down into their basic substances. Some materials are especially conducive for recycling.

Plastics are among the most recycled substances and among the most widely used products in the world. If you have wondered how plastic recycling works, the answer is simple. There are three basic steps to recycling plastics.

Sorting Plastics for Recycling

Plastics must be sorted based on the type of materials used to make a particular type of plastic. Some types of plastic are durable and capable of being recycled one or more times. Others might be biodegradable and intended to be thrown away. They degrade in a few months and are not viable for recycling.

Many plastic items are already made from recycled plastics. The more an original plastic is recycled, the less viable it is for additional recycling. Sorting the plastics based on their respective recyclability will help to produce the best results.

Preparing Plastics for Recycling

Once the plastics are sorted, they must be cleaned and readied for the recycling process. Any impurities are removed so that only the plastic remains. Impurities could include old labels and residue left from whatever the plastics might have held or picked up while in the trash.

After the plastic is cleaned, it is cut up into small pellets and bagged up for testing. The testing will determine the recyclability of the plastic pellets. Some will need an additional infusion of virgin plastic while others will undergo materials processing to make them viable for additional manufacturing processes.

Processing Plastics for Recycling

Many recycling facilities will grind and melt the plastic for recycling. An extrusion process can shape it into a useful filament. The filament is what is used in the actual manufacturing process to convert the old plastic into new products.

The filament is made into pellets, powder or flakes for use in manufacturing. A combination of hot-washing, granulation filtration, and crushing the recycled plastic filament helps to render it into a usable resource for manufacturing. Once the recycled plastic is fully prepared, manufacturers can use it to produce a variety of new products.

Manufacturing with recycled materials can reduce the need for raw materials and natural resources. It also helps to reduce the amount of waste material that winds up in landfills and incinerators.

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