The Waste Place
useful waste solutions

The Waste Place
useful waste solutions

6 am Thought - Fridges and Freezers

6 a.m. Thought: Fridges and Freezers



Fridge/freezer disposal; A few months ago getting a description of waste a customer had  (they wanted a quote over the phone and the main description was; “it’s not that much”!), they quickly added “I also have a fridge freezer”, followed by “but it’s only a small one”. I felt an inward groan at the conversation I was about to have, one repeated many times, and I’m sure repeated by waste collection businesses up and down the country on a daily basis!


Fridge’s and freezers are one of the items where size does not matter (and it really doesn’t!). Having to explain due to the gasses’ hazardous nature a fridge or freezer must be taken to an appropriately licensed facility incurring an additional cost. One that seems to be climbing rapidly at present!


Some people seem to believe their being conned, when their small collection gets 50% of the cost added to it, just because of the fridge. It has also been suggested I just take it “down the tip!”. I then have to explain to the unbeliever this would be illegal for me to do as a business, but I would strongly suggest they could take it to the tip in their car, and save themselves the extra money! As the extra charge was already relatively high, I rarely added on much margin to these items anyway (whether the customer believed me or not!).


I’m sure even skip companies would rather leave fridges and freezers off the collection list, as they can wait a while to move on theirs, and then find the current price is higher than what they charged the customer in the first place!


The solution should be simple, with the introduction of enough specialist fridge freezer recycling centres set up around the UK. Given we know the average life expectancy and number of homes in the UK (who doesn’t have a fridge/freezer?!), centres could be strategically placed to reduce the miles a fridge/freezer travels before final disposal.


Household to yard to waste-transfer-station to (possibly) WEEE specialist to final (giant) disposal facility for degassing/recovery.


How much time has elapsed between original collection and final processing? How many sites are tempted to smash them with a digger and put them with the scrap (I’m sure however this would never happen!).


It would benefit us all to have a tighter, more efficient, process to reduce cost and remove the inward groan we start with!

Ben: 24th Nov 2017 13:43:00

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