Recycling in a RV

Recycling in an RV with limited space can be a challenge but is not impossible. My sister and her family have a great system and I am lucky enough to share their story with you this week.

The Way the Petters Family Recycles

By Stephanie Petters

We’ve always been huge proponents of recycling as much as we could when we lived in houses and apartments. When we moved into our humble Travel Trailer as full-timers for the first time we weren’t sure how we could recycle. So for the first few months we didn’t recycle, which broke our hearts. Then we thought of a system and realized we could still recycle the way we want as a family even though we are living in a tiny space that doesn’t offer recycling services.

Materials needed:

  • Gathering bag to hang off of chair or wall that you can place your recycles in before sorting them
  • Mesh laundry bags (can find them at Walmart); 1 for each product you will be recycling. For example, we have 1 bag for plastics, 1 bag for aluminum, 1 bag for steel, 1 bag for cardboard/chipboard, 1 bag for misc paper.
  • Sturdy outdoor 36 gallon tote (best ones are at Home Depot). Find whatever will fit under the RV to be out of the way.

The first step is gathering the recycles. We hang a reusable tote off of the chair. As we go along the day when something is recyclable we rinse it out (if needed) and place it in the bag.

Inside bag for capturing recyclables
Recycle Bag

Second step is sorting the recycles into our mesh bags and storage tote. So we take the bag outside, pull out the tote and literally start sorting into the correct places. Glass we place directly into the storage tote.

Mesh sort bags
Mesh sort bags

Third step is placing the bags back into the storage tote and returning the storage tote to be back under the RV. Our recycling tote we use is the small one to the right; tote closest to the steps.

storage tote
our home

The final step is when you can no longer close the lid on the tote it’s time to visit the recycling center. I can easily carry the tote with the recycles in my compact car with no problem and it doesn’t make it smelly in there either.

It’s been great sharing this information with you and thank you AlongWithKat for allowing us to share it.

Share with friends

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.