A to Z of recycling - S


Find out how to recycle, reduce, re-use and dispose of many items in Suffolk.

Please use the search bar at the top of the page or browse the A to Z to find the item you want to dispose of.

Remember that your item might have more than one name or may be listed under the name of the material it is made of.


A | B | C | D | E | F | G | H | I | J | K | L | M | N | O | P | Q | R | S | T | U | V | W | X | YZ

For advice on Plastic sauce bottles, see "Plastic bottles and food packaging"

For advice on Glass sauce bottles, see "Glass bottles and jars"


Kerbside composting binYou can only recycle clean sawdust in your kerbside compost bin Sawdust must be from untreated wood, (unpainted or un-varnished wood) you cannot put sawdust used for animal bedding into your kerbisde compost bin.

Household Waste Recycling CentreYou can recycle untreated sawdust at any Suffolk Recycling Centre in the green container.

Recycle as home compost

Home compost binYou can compost sawdust from untreated wood in a home composting bin.

For advice on hard plastic sewing needles, see "Plastic (Hard)"

For advice on metal sewing needles, see "Metal"


You can recycle all shampoo and conditioner bottles.

Loose bottle tops are too small to survive the pre-sorting process at the recycling facility. They won’t get recycled unless you wash and squash your empty plastics bottles and then place the top back on.

You can then recycle:

   Kerbside recycling binin your kerbside recycling bin

Household Waste Recycling Centre in the plastic bottle container at any Suffolk Recycling Centre

To find more information about which plastics you can and can't recycle see our "plastic" entries


Use shredded paper as packing material to protect items of mail inside their parcel.

Soft shredded paper can be used as caged animal bedding.

It can also be used as an alternative to confetti.


Only shred what you need to shred, such as only parts of a document that contains personal or sensitive information.

Also, signing up to get electronic statements instead of paper copies is also another good way to reduce the need to shred documents. 


Household Waste Recycling CentreYou can take shredded paper to any Suffolk Recycling Centre and place it in the paper container. 

Recycle as home compost

  Home compost bin   You can home compost shredded paper.

For advice on hard plastic shredders, see "Hard Plastics"

For advice on electric shredders, see "Small electrical items"

For advice on Plastic sink drainers see, "Hard Plastics"

For advice on Metal sink drainers see, "Metals"


Before thinking about reuse, recycling or disposal options for your small electrical item, have you considered whether it could be repaired?

There are several repair cafes and groups in Suffolk who offer free help to local communities. Please visit this page to find out more.


Charity or re-use shop Offer electrical items in good condition and full working order to charity shops or through an online re-use network.

Donate small electricals in working condition at any Suffolk Recycling Centre (by placing them in the re-use containers at site) where they are tested and sold either at The Benjamin Foundation or by local charities Gatehouse and Ipswich Furniture Project. 

If you are looking to donate computers, laptops or phones please make sure you wipe the hard drives and memory or remove memory cards first as the charities may not do this.


If electrical items are beyond repair you can: 

Household Waste Recycling Centre take them to any Suffolk Recycling Centre and place in small electricals items container. Make sure any batteries are removed and recycled in battery container

  • check whether your retailer has a take back scheme.
  • take items to small electrical recycling banks only if you're in Ipswich or Suffolk Coastal. Find your nearest recycling bank.

Electrical items (mains and battery powered) must not be thrown away in your rubbish bin. They contain small quantities of hazardous material as well as precious metals and should be properly recycled.


Household Waste Recycling Centre  If the alarms are broken, please take them to any Suffolk Recycling Centre and place in the container for small electrical items.

You could also contact the manufacturer and ask for advice about disposing of the alarm. 


Retain excess soil for planting and potting, or ask your neighbours, friends or relatives if they have any use for it. 


Household Waste Recycling CentreThere is a charge for disposing of hardcore, rubble and soil at any Suffolk Recycling Centre.

Recycle as home compost

  Home compost binYou can add small amounts of excess soil to your home compost bin


Household Waste Recycling CentreSolar panels can be taken to any Suffolk Recycling Centre and placed in small electricals items container.


Some opticians collect unwanted glasses for onward donation to charity.

Charity or re-use shop  Ask your local charity shop if they will accept reading glasses, prescription glasses, or sunglasses.


Household Waste Recycling Centre  You can recycle glasses at any Suffolk Recycling Centre.


Charity or re-use shop  Some charities accept stamps which they will sell on to raise money.

A few of examples of charities that will take your stamps are Oxfam, RNIB (Royal National Institute of the Blind) and PDSA. For a larger list, see Used Stamps for Charity


Kerbside recycling bin  You can recycle stamps still attached to envelopes in your kerbside recycling bin.

If your storage heaters were installed before 1974, there is a possibility that they may contain asbestos insulation. (List of models known to contain asbestos here: https://www.aic.org.uk/storage-heaters-asbestos/). Please don’t dismantle the heater if you think asbestos may be present as the asbestos insulation may have frayed and therefore it will be dangerous to do so.

If you think it may contain asbestos it cannot be taken to a Recycling Centre. The weight of these will also be too much for our hazardous waste collection, however Collins Skip hire does have an asbestos landfill and they may be able to take this (please contact them directly) or you can go to any other asbestos disposal company.

If your storage heater is newer than 1974 (& not on the above list):

Household Waste Recycling Centre Take the bricks from the storage heater to any Suffolk Recycling and place in the hardcore container. There is a charge for this - for further information click here.

The casing can go in the small electricals container at the Suffolk Recycling Centre, however if you are unsure you can ask on site.


You could ask not to have a plastic straw in your drinks at a café or restaurant. If you use straws a lot you could have your own reusable alternative e.g. ones made out of hard plastic or metal.


Plastic straws can be reused in a number of creative ways. This webpage has some great ideas:https://www.onegoodthingbyjillee.com/2015/02/23-practical-ways-reuse-disposable-straws.html


For advice on hard metal straws, see "metal"

For advice on hard plastics straws, see "Plastics (hard)"


Before thinking about reuse, recycling or disposal options for your suitcase, have you considered whether it could be repaired?

There are several repair cafes and groups in Suffolk who offer free help to local communities. Please visit this page to find out more.


Why not donate your old suitcase to a charity shop or Freecycle then please consider donating it depending how worn out it is.  

If it is in good condition, it can also be taken to any Suffolk Recycling Centre and placed in the re-use container (ask site staff for details).


Household Waste Recycling CentreSome suitcases are made mostly from hard plastics. If this is the case then the suitcase can be recycled, at your nearest Recycling centre in the hard plastic container.


Most suitcases are made from a mix of different materials so these cannot currently be recycled in Suffolk. They should be disposed of in the non-recycling container at Recycling centres or in your refuse bin.

If the Superlux material contains gypsum, see "Plasterboard" for disposal advice.

If it doesn't include gypsum, the material go in the non-recyclable container at any Suffolk Recycling Centre.