Recycle Your Brita Filters

It's been almost two years since Brita began recycling the filters for their water pitchers, but did you know that they also partnered with Preserve to become part of the Preserve Gimme 5 program? The program allows you to drop off your filters (and other #5 plastics) in special bins nationwide.

This may be old news to some, but I had no idea about the Gimme 5 program and had added my Brita filters to my "I don't know what to do with it, so I'll put it in a box in the garage" recycling pile. In the city of Los Angeles we can recycle our #5 plastics, but I never dared put a Brita filter in my blue recycling bin. It's amazing what a trip to the local Whole Foods can do to enlighten me.

Here are the steps to take before heading to your nearest Preserve Gimme 5 location:

1. Dry the filter by shaking off excess water and setting it in a dry place for at least three days.
2. Wrap the filter in a plastic grocery bag, which will be recycled at the Preserve Gimme 5 destination.
3. Drop the wrapped filter in the Preserve Gimme 5 bin.

If there isn't a bin at a location close to you, you can still send them in by mail and follow these steps:

1. Dry the filter by shaking off excess water and setting it in a dry place for at least three days.
2. Wrap the filter in a plastic grocery bag, then pack it in a box. (Boxes and bags will be recycled.) If possible, send multiple filters at a time.
3. Mail filters via ground shipping to: Preserve Gimme 5, 823 NYS Rte 13, Cortland, NY 13045

And for those concerned about the fossil fuels expended through mailing your filters, Preserve, "has calculated that the benefits of keeping Brita filters out of landfills and making them into Preserve products outweigh the impact of shipping them for recycling through this program. Read more about the environmental benefits of Preserve Plastic." Just make sure to bundle at least 3 filters for mailing and to only send via ground, not air.

One downer is that Brita faucet filters are made of a different grade of plastic, and currently aren't recyclable.

Related posts:

Shopping for Water Filters
Enting Dual Cartridge Under Sink Water Filter System
Safe Green Water Jug?

(Image: takebackthefilter.org)