Recycling old lightbulbs

  Esc4p3 11:38 23 Jul 09

Is there any such service as lighbulb recycling. Over the last couple of weeks I have had 4 of our older style light bulbs go 'phut'. Not a problem in that I have replaced them with some of the myriad of free low energy ones that I have been sent over the last few months.

But what worrys me always with chucking old light bulbs in the ordinary bin is that they will smash into a zillion tiny pieces and not be very nice for the envirnment.

I know it is not the biggest worry in the world, just trying to do the right thing....any suggestions.

  smartpoly 11:54 23 Jul 09

I don,t know about bulbs but my local Homebase takes my 'phutted' flourecent tubes when I buy new ones.

  Esc4p3 12:29 23 Jul 09

"All bulbs should be put into the non re-cycle bin according to our council"

That is where I have always put mine, but wondered if there was an alternative...

  Stuartli 14:19 23 Jul 09

It's important that you dispose of fluorescent tubes properly.

I put tungsten bulbs inside a small, strong cardboard box for safety reasons before disposing of them.

  Stuartli 14:22 23 Jul 09

We've also got zillions of low energy bulbs (not that I like them), including some costing just a 1p each from Tesco (got 20 at the time, much to the cash out girl's bewilderment at such a low price!)

  peter99co 15:14 23 Jul 09

We bought some 12watt Minispiral BC at Tesco a £1.96 for four. On the shelf they were £2 each.

Our council have no info about their disposal even though they can be a hazard if dumped in a bin.

  Marko797 20:54 23 Jul 09

why are u worrying about such trivia? Just throw them in the bin into which u throw ur beer bottles.

  laurie53 21:08 23 Jul 09

Problem is, of course, that they contain such diverse materials not easily separated, and in such small quantities - glass shell, glass rod, wire (copper?), tungsten, lead, pitch, base metal cap.

The cost of separation/ recovery is simply not economic, and since the materials are relatively inert they are not too environmentally unfriendly.

Now the low energy ones, on the other hand, while maybe also not worth recycling economically, usually contain some fairly nasty, long term, pollutants, albeit in small quantities.

One area more worthy of attention is lithium button cells. Now they really are poisonous, like all the heavy metals.

In Holland and some parts of northern Germany where the water table isn't very deep there are some very heavy penalties if one of those is found in your non-recycling waste.

  Marko797 21:21 23 Jul 09

all very c3p0-ish.

  laurie53 08:42 24 Jul 09

Sorry, don't do much texting so don't know what "c3po-ish" stands for.

  Technotiger 08:52 24 Jul 09

He he he - better ask Darth Vadar!!

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