How to recycle bottle tops

Published on 14 June 2021

bottle top lids

Individual bottle tops and lids are too small to be processed on their own, but if placed in a can or bottle of the same material (plastic or metal), they will be recycled. 

Here's what to do: 

1.  Rinse the bottle tops or lids to remove any food residue.

2.  Put them in a can or bottle of the same material - Metal - Use a Milo or coffee tin with a lid or put the lids inside an empty can and squash so the lids don't fall out. Hint: If a magnet sticks to it, it's steel – if not, it's aluminium. Hard plastic lids - Use a large plastic bottle (e.g. milk, juice or detergent bottle) to collect small hard plastics like lids, bread tags, straws and medicine container lids. When the container is full, pop a lid on the top.

3.  Put the sealed full can or bottle in the yellow-lid recycling bin.  

4. Make sure all other bottles, jars and cans also go in the yellow-lid recycling bin - without lids. If you don't follow the steps above, your lids need to go in your red-lid waste bin - something to avoid if possible. 

What are your lids recycled into?

Steel and aluminium from bottle tops can be recycled into street signs, car parts and new bottle tops. 
Plastic bottle tops can be recycled into garden rakes, storage containers, reusable shopping bags, yarn, ropes, brooms … and more bottle tops. 


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