When it comes to recycling glass, it is essential to know that certain glass items are accepted for recycling. In contrast, your curbside recycling program might not take in others.
Glass bottles, jars, and glass food containers are readily taken in for recycling. In comparison, items like table tops, window glass, mirrors, and other large glass pieces might not be accepted.
You can recycle glass tabletops. They have a melting point higher than average container glass due to chemicals added to increase their durability. This means they aren’t accepted at all recycling centers, so check before you try to drop them off.
Glass table tops and other large glass items have a different chemical composition from the standard glass used in containers. Since they have been treated with chemicals to make them more durable, they have other melting points than container glass.
This is why they are usually not accepted for recycling along with container glass because they will contaminate the entire load due to the variation in melting points. There are, however, separate ways of recycling glass table tops and other treated glass.
How to Recycle Glass Table Tops
Since glass table tops have been treated with chemicals to make them more durable, their chemical composition and melting point differ from container glass. They are not accepted in regular container glass recycling facilities.
There are separate recycling facilities where they are taken for recycling. Remember, since the policy for recycling glass table tops and large glass items varies from place to place, you should contact your municipality to know if they will accept them.
Here are some steps you can follow to ensure that the glass table top you don’t have any use for is recycled and used again.
When Was The First Flat Glass Tabletop Made?
The first glass tabletops started appearing in the 1600s as glass manufacturing progressed enough to produce plate glass.
Step 1: Check With Your Local Recycling Center
After considering recycling your glass table top, you will want to know if your municipality will accept it. You must contact them to see if they will take in your tabletop. Since the recycling conditions and facilities differ for a large treated glass like a glass tabletop, you might also know that your municipality does not accept such glass.
There is also the likely situation that your municipality accepts such glass but has some restrictions on the dimensions of the glass. If the table top does not meet the measurements, you must look for other options.
Suppose your municipality accepts glass for recycling. In that case, they might ask you to bring it to the facility yourself because the regular trucks for recycling pickup might not be equipped to handle such nonstandard items. In all these cases, you will clearly understand whether your glass table top can be recycled and how to proceed with the recycling process.
How Much Is The Flat Glass Market In The United States Worth?
The Flat Glass market in the U.S. is estimated to be worth $43.7 billion by 2025.
Step 2: Check the Quality of the Glass
Once you’ve got the okay from the local authorities that your glass is good to be recycled, you will have to check the quality of the glass on your glass table top. What you must be looking for is damage to the glass.
If the glass is cracked or pitted, recycling might not be helpful. Even if there are discolorations, they might be turned down.
So, ensure that your glass is not broken and has no discolorations. You can even ask about this on your call with the recycling facility, where you can get a confirmation from them.
Which Country Produces The Most Glass?
China is the world’s largest producer of glass.
Step 3: Wrap the Glass
Once you’ve ensured the intactness of the tabletop, you will have to wrap the glass carefully before it can be given to the recycling facility. To do this, if you still have the whole glass table top intact and the glass not removed, you might consider wrapping it entirely without breaking it.
If the glass is removed from the tabletop, you can wrap it in cardboard and use bubble wrap on top to ensure it does not break. You don’t want to put yourself or the sanitation workers at risk by breaking the glass. Be extra careful when you are wrapping up the glass, and be sure to wear gloves to ensure your protection.
Step 4: Drive to the Recycling Facility or Get a Pickup Option
Based on your interaction with the municipal authorities, you might be prompted to drive and drop the glass at a recycling facility, or a pickup can happen. If you are asked to drive and drop off the glass table top, you must ensure that the glass wrapping is strong enough to hold the glass for the duration of your travel to drop it at the recycling facility.
If you can pick up your glass table top, add a label on top of the cardboard box used for packing to mark the item inside as glass. A simple “Glass for disposal” will be sufficient, and sanitation workers can handle the box carefully, knowing that the item inside is glass being sent for disposal.
You will have to place your labeled box near the curbside recycle container with the labeled side facing outward so that it is easy for the pickup workers to spot your box and load it into the truck to be taken away for recycling.
The glass table tops sent for recycling are separately recycled due to their different chemical composition and melting point. They are crushed and melted in a furnace at very high temperatures.
After melting, they are blown into containers, drawn into flat sheets, manufactured into fiber optics, or spun into fiberglass. The advantage of using glass is that it is 100% recyclable, and you can get new glass items that can be used until they can be recycled.
Where to Recycle Glass Table Tops
The usual places that recycle glass are the local recycling centers in the area where you live. Usually, you can find information about the centers by searching the web.
Ensure they recycle glass table tops because many small facilities cannot recycle items like them. If so, you can contact your municipality to know the alternative to recycling your glass.
You might also find a construction and demolition recycler who can process glass table tops, windows, mirrors, and other large glass materials. However, they only accept items in bulk, so you must be a contractor or someone with ties with the recycler. If not, you must book a bulk pickup with your municipality’s solid waste pickups for windows, mirrors, and treated glass materials.
Repurposing Glass Table Tops
One of the best ways to ensure that your glass table top is put to good use is to repurpose it. You might not need the round glass table top to be used as a tabletop, but you can easily find other utilities.
The concept of DIY gets more exciting with the various possibilities of a round glass table top. We will look at a few repurpose use cases to understand how to do the top glass work for you.
Stained Glass Mosaic Wall Light
Breathe a new lease of life into your old round glass top by making it a beautiful stained glass mosaic wall light. You will need a glass base, a few adhesives, grout, and the tools needed to work with the glass base.
Use glass cutters to make the cuts and pliers to break off the glass pieces. You may make straight and curved lines according to the design you want to bring to life.
When you have cut out and brought all the pieces from the base, you will have to use the adhesives to glue them up and add them to the round glass table top according to the design you were inspired to create. Finally, use LED strip lights for the backlighting to bring your inspiration to life.
Stained Glass Suncatcher
If the round table top is not very big, you can use it as a beautiful stained glass suncatcher. All you need is stained glass paint and some imagination to create a stained glass that can be used as a suncatcher.
You can lean it against a fence or against your window to catch the sun’s rays—a quick and easy way to repurpose your round glass table top.
We have given you some ideas for repurposing your old glass tabletop. With some creativity, you can always find new uses for your round glass table top and never need to consider recycling it again.
When recycling glass table tops, it is essential to know that certain glass items are accepted for recycling while others might not. Glass bottles, jars, and food containers are readily accepted. In contrast, glass table tops, windows, mirrors, and other large glass pieces may not be accepted.
It’s important to check with your local recycling center to understand their policy on recycling glass table tops and large glass items, as they vary. Additionally, the quality of the glass table top should be checked for damage or discoloration. If it is in good condition, it should be wrapped carefully before being at the recycling facility.
If recycling isn’t available in your area, you can always try repurposing the tabletop to keep it from going to a landfill.