Packaging and other materials have changed significantly over the past several years, which has impacted how residents recycle. For example, Elgin used to accept plastic bags in our recycling, but we learned the plastic bags were wrapping around the recycling equipment and shutting down plants. So we’re asking residents NOT to place their recyclables in plastic bags or put any loose bags in the recycling cart. Instead, take plastic bags to Jewel or Target to recycle, and empty your recyclables directly into your carts. Extra recyclables that don’t fit in your recycling cart should be placed loose in a second recycling container.
For a great (16-page!) resource, we recommend Kane County Recycle’s 2020 Green Guide. Click this banner to get it!
Let’s rethink recycling and get back to basics.
Here are 3 basic rules to keep in mind before you toss anything into your recycling cart:
Recycle all empty plastic bottles, cans, and paper
Keep food and liquids out of recycling
Keep plastic bags out of recycling bin. No Bagged Recyclables. Take plastic bags back to your local grocer.
Aluminum cans, foil and formed containers
Empty aerosol and paint cans
Steel or tin cans
Clear, green and brown glass only
Large cardboard items must be flattened into pieces no larger than 3' x 3' square.
Examples of paper products that can be recycled include but are not limited to:
Magazines and catalogs (glossy and non-glossy) Shredded paper (Place in brown paper bag)
Mixed paper (staples are okay)
Newspapers and inserts
Make sure that the numbered recycling symbol usually found on the bottom of plastic containers matches those accepted in the City of Elgin's recycling program. Numbers Accepted: 1, 2, 3, 5, 7
Example products include but are not limited to:
Laundry detergent containers
Milk and water bottles
Individually placed in a clear sandwich bag; one bag per battery regardless of size.
Cover both the top and bottom of each battery using any sort of tape (scotch, masking, duct etc.) and multiple batteries can be placed in the same bag.
Unacceptable curbside recyclable items include but are not limited to:
Containers that once contained: motor oil, anti-freeze, pool chemicals, or hazardous waste
Scrap metal, hangers, plastic toys
Mirrors, window glass, Pyrex dishes or light bulbs
Polystyrene (i.e., Styrofoam) is not recyclable in the City of Elgin’s recycling program.
Waste Management Resources: Recycle Often, Recycle Right