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Fridge Recyclers Under Pressure

The UK’s fridge recyclers are under pressure. An increase in the sales of fridges during summer months has put a strain on the UK’s permitted reprocessing plants, leaving some at the brink of capacity.

Andritz Refrigerator Recycling Plants

Surge in fridge disposal

There has been a growing burden on the fridge recyclers since the change in regulations in 2013, now classifying fridges and freezers as hazardous waste. This means that metal recyclers are no longer able to accept them. But just recently there has been a sudden surge in the amount of fridges being sent to reprocessing plants.

Dan Cooke, director of regulatory affairs at Viridor confirmed that: “As one of the UK’s WEEE recyclers, Viridor is responding to a 30% surge in fridges presented for recycling.”

Several sites are currently not able to accept more products for storage ahead of processing, as there are restrictions to how much they can legally store. state that “The Environment Agency has this week said that it will work with fridge reprocessors to address ‘storage difficulties’ arising at treatment facilities, in the face of growing fridge stockpiles.”

Why the increase?

The rise in fridges being disposed of could be due to more fridges breaking down over the summer months, or perhaps due to promotions by retailers. If the latter is the case it is likely this situation could occur again, due to post-Christmas bargains being offered.

As a supplier of fridge recycling plants, we can certainly confirm that we have seen an increase in the amount of enquiries that have been received and quotations that we have been providing for fridge plants of varying sizes. The demand must be growing.

Recycling plants we offer

ANDRITZ MeWa recycling plants for cooling devices can reclaim 99.9% of environmentally harmful greenhouse gases. A particular benefit is that even modern refrigerators – in which the insulation materials have been expanded using highly explosive pentane gas – can be processed at the same time as CFC appliances. The recovered individual fractions of iron, copper, aluminum, plastics and PU foam can be returned directly to the economic cycle.

A single stage process extracts the recyclable materials from the domestic appliances, consumer electronics, and computers and sorts them by category. Parts containing harmful substances are left untouched by the process.

This means that 98% of the decontamination takes place in the controlled atmosphere of the QZ. A secure future investment, as rendering inert both CFCs and pentane-containing devices, they can be subsequently processed in any mixture ratio.

If you are interested in fridge recycling plants of any size, then contact us for more information.


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