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Buying Guide to Recycling Bins

Whatever your recycling needs, our great selection of built-in and freestanding bins have been carefully selected to ensure they are the highest quality and will help you recycle efficiently and with a degree of style.

If the theory of recycling sounds worth doing but in reality gives you piles of packs and papers in the kitchen, a recycling bin from us will give you a place to sort your recycling and hide it, until it's time to take it to the wheelie bins. Either discreetly built in to a cupboard or standing looking smart in your kitchen, our bins will make the task easier and tidier for you.

This guide sets out ways to integrate recycling into your kitchen or office, using our bins to create a smart and effective solution. As one customer put it, "the neatness of tidying everything away in the right places has transformed our kitchen and put an end to arguments over whose turn it is to do the rubbish".

Our Recycling Options

With our innovative designs, a dual or triple recycling bin can often be fitted into the same floor space that used to be occupied by one rubbish bin, which will help you to keep the recycling and waste sorted and tidied away. How do you choose from such a large range?

The starting point has to be the space you have and how much waste your bin is going to need to hold. This may depend on the size of your household, how much you tend to throw away or recycle or how often you want to empty it. Some customers choose the largest bin they can fit into their space: the Simplehuman CW2025 Dual recycler (top left) has a large capacity. If you have a compact kitchen or a narrow space for your bin, we have slim-line designs: see our separate section below on slimline spaces.

Secondly the number of compartments you need may influence your choice, depending on your local recycling scheme and how much capacity you need for recyclables compared to waste. Bins with two ‘buckets’ such as the Brabantia twin recycler (bottom left) give you easy separation and can be used in conjunction with a food waste caddy. Triple compartment bins such as the Joseph Joseph Totem (bottom right) can ‘round up’ all types of waste into one neat unit.

The third consideration is style, as bins can be beautiful! From sleek, minimal shapes, to fun retro designs, our bins are designed to be seen and make a positive addition to your space. We believe that the bin is an essential kitchen accessory and should be given as much visual and functional design consideration as other kitchen appliances and even furniture.

If you’re looking to make a style statement with your recycling bin, then a beautiful design in a colourful finish will provide a real focal point in your kitchen: see the Wesco i-Master sensor recycler in red. Alternatively chic, on trend finishes such as stainless steel, grey or stone can blend discreetly with the rest of your kitchen or office space. 

Quality of design and materials is vital and our bins have features that set them apart from the rest such as quiet soft-close lids, pedal mechanisms that are engineered for years of use and extra durable construction in superior colour finishes or fingerprint-proof coatings. One of our bins should work well and keep its good looks for years of use.

Integrated in-cupboard bins are a fantastic solution if you want to maintain a clutter-free kitchen or to free up some floor space. They can also be a very effective element when it comes to planning the workflow in a kitchen as they can be positioned where you prepare food or tidy up at the end of a meal to make your kitchen more ergonomic. 

Integrated bins can be planned in to a new kitchen or retro-fitted as a great hidden recycling solution in an existing kitchen. We sell only top-quality leading brands including Wesco, Vauth-Sagel, Hailo and Ninka. Strong and durable, they have smooth runners and solidly built frameworks. As with our free-standing bins, they should give you years of use and spare inner bins and parts are available for freshening up in years to come. 

Our integrated bins for pull-out doors often have soft-close runners and a cabinet-wide lid which is strong enough to act as an extra shelf, so by fitting one of our bins you can turn improve the function of the cabinet itself. The range is divided by outer door width and this is a starting point to find the right size bin: please then check the inner width, depth and height available inside the cabinet.

Our wide range of In-cupboard bins for hinged door cabinets is also divided by outer door width, but again this is just a starting point because most of these products are simply fixed to the cabinet base, meaning that you have some flexibility with positioning. All of our bins for Hinged door cabinets can be fitted into a wider cabinet, perhaps positioned to one side with a water filter or other storage on the other side. It can also be possible to fit two base-fixed bins side by side in a 600mm or wider cabinet. 

It can be possible to convert a hinged door cabinet for use with a bin for pull-out doors, by taking the door off the hinges, filling any holes in the back and ideally positioning the handle centrally.

If you have a cabinet which is a bespoke or unusual size, or if you have an in-frame style, there are ways to make these formats work: see our separate section in our Buying Guide to In-Cupboard Bins, which also sets out more detail on measuring and choosing the best bin for your cabinet and recycling needs. You can also use our Quick Product Finder to narrow down a selection of products for your door width and type, before checking detailed dimensions. We’ll be happy to help find the right product for you: just email or call us.

If you have a busy household or need a smart, quality recycling station for your office, combining two or three bins as a set is a good-looking way to achieve high capacity. Many of our bins can be neatly aligned in groups, using either a set of single compartment bins for extra large capacity, or putting two recycling bins together. Our customer in Devon combined Joseph Joseph Totem 60L and Titan compactor bins. Differentiating the bins to denote their contents can be done using colour, as in this set of Simplehuman Slim Plastic bins, or by using applied graphics to keep the sleek look of an all-steel group of bins. A set of slim steel bins can be a more appropriate solution for a smart office than standard commercial products. See our Recycling Sets area, or get in touch if you’d like to discuss a bespoke set.

If you’re looking for a discreet and stylish solution to office recycling, our range features well designed bins which will give your staff and visitors enough capacity to take your daily recycling and waste, without spoiling the look of your interior. Increasing commercial recycling requirements  have made it a challenge to integrate recycling provision into commercial spaces where the design and ambience of the interior are vital in projecting the business or brand characteristics.

We have supplied, for example, sets of sleek steel bins for an English vineyard in their brick-built tasting vaults,  cream coloured retro-styled bins for a legal chambers in a heritage building, and black steel bins for a hotel chain where every detail in the bedrooms was considered.

Some commercial bins are not only extra tough but have industrial styling which can look great in a contemporary office. They often have soft-close lids for noise reduction and features such as wheels and front-opening panels designed to make changing the bins easier without heavy lifting.

Some of our more minimal bin designs are suitable for conference rooms and reception areas, including the Simplehuman Touch Bar bins which look “more like pieces of furniture than bins”, according to one customer who used them in her meeting rooms. The opposite of being discreet with bins is to use them to make a statement and project your brand identity: Wesco coloured bins in particular have been used by customers to reflect their brand colours, or to stand out in situations where bins must be seen and used, such as in an Family Arts Centre where we supplied yellow bins essential to post-creative clear ups. 

We are really happy to help suggest products and ideas for recycling and waste bin solutions, if you have a business need or you’re designing a space. The bins can contribute visually to the space and also make recycling easier for everyone using them.

If you have a separate collection for food waste, this should mean better end use for the waste but it gives you an added type of recycling to find a container for. We have some smart solutions including purpose-designed food caddies with odour control, and smart looks so that they won’t look out of place on the worktop where you need them. 

Containers for food waste are also integrated into some of our free-standing recycling bins. These include the Brabantia 33L Touch recycling bin, right, which has a 10L green container for food waste, and the Totem 60L and Stack 52 products from Joseph Joseph, both of which include a food caddy to be stored with the bin or out in the kitchen.

Many of our In-cupboard built in bins have small containers suitable for food waste. Inner ‘bucket’ sizes of 7,8,10 and 12 litres are a good size for use with green compostable liners, but any smaller buckets can of course be used for food. The Hailo Euro Cargo 45L Recycler 503.70.921 shown right is one example. You can also fit a bin into your worktop, with the lid flush with the surface and the bin hidden below: see the Wesco Ergomaster, right.

Narrow spaces at the end of a run of units, behind a door or on the end of island units can be a great place for a bin and we have a growing range of slimline bins designed to make the most of these spaces. A narrow footprint is useful in compact spaces but even in larger kitchens, using these places is a good idea as they are not wide enough for appliances or furniture.

Bins with narrow footprints are accessed from the front and our range includes pedal bins with centre-opening lids, allowing you to position them under worktops to be even more space-efficient. The Joseph Joseph Stack 52 Recycling system (top right) is designed to use available height when floor space is narrow, incorporating two recycling compartments and a food caddy which stack vertically and can also be used as 3 separate elements.

Narrow sensor bins are great if there is no worktop above them, so are ideal for the ends of islands or between cabinets with no obstruction above to trigger the sensor: see the new Wesco Big Double Master recycling bin (bottom right).

Tall, slim round or oval bins such as the Brabantia Twin Compartment recycling bin (bottom left) are still a favourite for using narrow places and corners effectively.

The newer development of the Semi-Round shape works well against cabinet ends, as the rounded front appears to take up less space but still gives good capacity inside. See the Simplehuman Semi-Round liner pocket bin fitting discreetly at the end of a run of units, without getting in the way (top right).