The Recycle Cycle of Plastic Drink Bottles

by Chris Martin on October 6, 2014

By the time children learn to walk and talk, there are some things that have already been drilled into their heads. Like “Wash your hands!” “Don’t hit your brother/sister!” and “Recycle!”

As adults, we are keenly aware of the need to recycle and the general benefits that result from this practice. But how much do we really know about the specific recycling process?

Look at all those drink bottles just waiting to be recycled.

Take plastic drink bottles, for example. Placing them in recycling containers has pretty much become the norm in America. So what happens to these bottles once they leave our sight?

How Do Drink Bottles Get Recycled?

Though some of the details may differ, the basic process for recycling plastic bottles is fairly uniform throughout the world. Once the bottles reach the recycling facility, they have to be separated from other types of plastic so as to ensure the purity of the eventual recycled material. In other words, drink bottles are sorted together in their own group and not mixed with shampoo bottles, shower curtains, sandwich bags, Tupperware, and packing peanuts.

The drink bottles are then washed vigorously in order to remove labels, adhesives, and other substances before being fed into a shredder which fashions the bottles into very small pieces. These pieces are then chemically tested to determine their precise classification (known as their “rGrade”) so manufacturers know exactly how to incorporate this recycled material into their plastic-making processes. Finally, these pieces are melted down and formed into pellets, which are then shipped to the companies who will use them in manufacturing.

They may not look pretty now, but the planet is better off because of them.

What Recycled Plastic Bottles Become – And How They Help the Earth

Once the drink bottles complete the entire recycling process, the “new” material can be used to make a wide variety of consumer items, including:

  • salad dressing bottles
  • cleaning product containers
  • clothing fabric
  • jacket fiberfill
  • furniture upholstery
  • residential or commercial carpeting
  • floor mats

Recycling plastic bottles has additional benefits for the planet. Creating recycled plastic reduces the need to manufacture virgin plastic, which in turn saves energy. In fact, if one ton of plastic bottles is recycled, it frees up 7.4 cubic yards of landfill space and saves 3.8 barrels of oil. And of course, recycled plastic bottles don’t end up as litter on streets, inside gutters, or in parks or open spaces.

Ultimate Mats: Offering Eco-Friendly Mats Containing Recycled Plastic Bottles

One of the “greenest” mats you can buy.

Ultimate Mats is a huge proponent of helping to preserve the environment by utilizing recycled material in its products. That’s why almost every floor mat sold by Ultimate Mats contains a significant amount of post-consumer recycled fiber that is reclaimed from plastic drink bottles.

For example, most of Ultimate Mats’ anti-fatigue mats are made up of between 14% and 17% of this recycled content. The ratio of recycled plastic bottle material in SuperScrape mats generally falls between 18% and 20%. Ultimate Mats even sells some “ultra-green” floor mats; like the WaterHog Eco Elite, which boasts a recycled content figure of 43.3%

It’s more than a symbol. It’s a way of life.

Therefore, if you purchase a high-quality floor mat from Ultimate Mats for your home or business, you can enjoy the piece of mind that comes from not only protecting your floors from dirt and moisture, but also from protecting the earth. Check out Ultimate Mats’ full line of floor protection products today!

Written by Chris Martin

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