Are Credit Cards Recylable?

By Bruce Boswell •  Updated: 12/14/21 •  6 min read
Filed under: Credit Cards

Recycling is a constant part of our everyday lives. We are constantly thinking about the environment, considering our impact on it and how we can reduce it. Plastic is everywhere. It is part of our groceries that we might buy from the store.

It is part of the toys we get for our kids. It is part of airline cutlery. It even holds our money on it. So, to understand how we can recycle plastic (and what plastic we can recycle) we will break down exactly what you have to do to make yourself more environmentally friendly. 

Are Credit Cards Recylable

You might be asking yourself – how can plastic be recycled in the first place? What kind of plastics can be recycled? Are Credit Cards recyclable? All of these questions and more will be answered in this, your one and only guide to recycling plastic. 

If you are reading this and have cancelled a card recently, read this on what happens when a merchant charges a cancelled card.

How Can Plastic Be Recycled In The First Place? 

There are many people who might think that because of the processes that are involved in making plastic, it is impossible to truly recycle it without resulting in some remaining waste. That you can’t be a true recycler or environmentalist if you recycle plastic or claim to recycle it. Well, they would be wrong. 

Plastic is recycled by being sorted into different types of plastic. This is because the temperature of the heat that is used to melt and recycle the plastic is different dependent on the type of plastic that is being recycled. 

Once the different types of plastic are sorted into different categories they are sent to be cleaned. This is so that any dirt or labels are taken off as otherwise they might interfere with the recycling process.

Once the pieces of plastic are cleaned, they are then shredded in order for the plastic to be easier to melt and reuse once more. Once shredding is complete, the pieces of plastic are sent to be melted down. 

Whilst you might be worried about how the fumes that come off the plastic effect the environment, don’t be. The fumes that come off the plastic are limited due to the way in which the plastic is burned and so do not affect the environment.

The plastic is melted and then remoulded meaning it can easily be reused. However, due to the chemical composition of plastic, it can only be remoulded and reused a set number of times. 

Astonishingly, over 91 percent of plastic in the United States isn’t actually recycled. This is because the plastic is simply thrown away and then sent to landfills where it can easily just fill up and up and up.

Unfortunately, not only does this plastic then become wasted and effect the environment by not being re used in order to cut down the amount of plastic being produced overall, but it can also then easily break down into microplastics over time. 

Microplastics are much more dangerous than traditional plastic because it is so small. Microplastics are essentially smaller versions of plastics that often originate as the degenerated form of larger plastic objects. Once the plastic degenerates it can easily get trapped in the soil and therefore harm plants that could have potentially grown in the ground. 

Equally the microplastics can be picked up by birds and carried off to their young, believing that the plastic may be a worm or something similar. This can either kill the chick or leave its throat severely scarred. 

This is why recycling everything that you can is so crucially important – without proper recycling then the scale of plastic across the world will become worse and worse and have an even more detrimental effect on the environment than it already has. 

What Kind Of Plastics Can You Recycle? 

Simply put, most plastics can be recycled. Some aren’t recycled not because at one time they couldn’t have been but simply because as they degenerate, the plastic cannot be reformed and remoulded into something else. This is why plastic that is particularly old cannot be recycled because it has degraded pas the point of being useful. 

This is further highlighted by the amounts of plastic that is in landfills – the reason most of this plastic has just stayed there is it has gone past the point of recycling. 

However, it is important that we recycle as much as possible including things like old credit cards that are no longer useful. 

Are Credit Cards Recyclable? 

The short answer is yes. Whilst the process of recycling credit cards is a bit harder because of the different metals included in the average credit card (aluminium, gold, copper etc) this does not mean that you cannot easily and effectively recycle your credit card. 

There are companies that specialise in recycling them so if you want to make sure that your credit card is recycled properly then it is best that you contact them. They will then effectively and efficiently deal with your credit card and ensure that it is recycled in the correct way. 

Why Recycling Is Important 

Recycling is important because it will help us to preserve our planet. It is crucial to the future of our world because it ensures that we will be able to have a planet fit for our children and their children and whatever future generations are yet to come. 

It is also important for our own lives and for making sure that we have healthy lives now. That we are eating food that has not been poisoned with unrecycled plastic, that we are able to enjoy an environment that has not been spoiled by our own lack of concern for the planet. 

Similarly, by allowing for greater recycling an environmental solution to our already existing problems we are creating new jobs and growth industries which will be sure to help the people of the world for a long time yet. 

Whilst recycling your old credit card might not seem like it will have much of an effect it truly will. Every piece of plastic that is allowed to rot and pollute our world when it could have been reused is a dangerous piece of plastic and as such recycling your old credit cards is an act of true patriotism. 


Bruce BoswellBruce Boswell

Bruce Boswell

Bruce Boswell enjoys researching and writing about all things related to investing and saving money. Whenever he has a chance, Bruce loves travelling all around the world with his wife and trying new foods.