It has only been a couple months since the Salvation Army thrift store in View Royal has been collecting household appliances for recycling.
Although some people are using the service, Jeff Reindl, warehouse manager, Salvation Army national recycling organization, said, “It’s been a little slow to get going. People don’t know about it.”
The Unplugged program began Oct.1 across the province. It enables B.C. residents to recycle small appliances at more than 100 locations across the province. The View Royal Salvation Army thrift store is the only West Shore location.
Almost all small household appliances are accepted from toasters to vacuum cleaners.
While Reindl is happy to see people using the program, one issue is people dropping off unsanitary items. All items dropped off for recycling need to be cleaned prior to arrival.
“People bring in vacuums with the dirty bags still in them or deep fryers with fat in them,” Reindl said.
“We aren’t set up to clean those things safely. We’ve found toasters with toast in them. If it’s mouldy toast then it goes in the garbage.”
When items are unable to be recycled due to safety concern they end up in the landfill.
“We all want to recycle it,” Reindl said.
Dropping off the items is free. All the collected items will be taken apart and sorted into groups such as plastic, glass and metal.
A fee has been added to new appliances at point of purchase to pay for the transporting and disassembling the items.
Metals are melted down and recycled into other metal products, while plastics and glass are sorted and sold or reused in various manufacturing processes.
Recycling fees on new items vary from $0.25 for an air freshener up to $10 for a large microwave. For household items such as blenders, coffee makers and bathroom scales, the fee is around $2.
“We can take any household non-commercial items. We can’t take restaurant equipment,” Reindl said.
The Salvation Army also collects most home electronics for reycling, but doesn’t accept cellphones.
View Royal Salvation Army Thrift Store is at 307 Island Highway.For a full list of accepted items go to www.unpluggedrecycling.ca