A lot of us tend to opt for small sized propane canisters to take along with us on camping trips. These canisters can be used for lanterns as well as camp stoves and contain just the necessary amount of fuel needed for these applications. However, not many of us are aware of the proper disposal techniques of these canisters after use. Merely leaving them out in the open is no good. Neither is throwing them into a trash bin. Read on to discover the ultimate guide to recycling propane canisters.

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A brief guide to recycling propane canisters

Small propane canisters are made of steel and weigh only around 2lbs or so. However, just like in the case of a larger propane tank, appropriate measures must be taken to dispose of these small canisters, which would otherwise cause great harm to us, as well as the waste management companies.

The hindrances

Unfortunately, not a lot of users are for recycling these propane canisters as there is always the danger of the remaining fuel starting a fire or blowing up. This can be considered as the same reasons as to why even recycling companies are wary of taking in these propane canisters.

The green key Coleman canister recycle program and green key canisters

For campers and recycling companies worldwide, Coleman introduced an initiative called the Green Key Program, which would make recycling these canisters easier. Even though the program was discontinued in 2010, the latter canisters started arriving with what one would call ‘green keys.’

This key is instrumental in ensuring that all the remaining fuel in the canister has been expelled properly before it is sent to the recycling company. Once you have expelled this fuel from the canister, you can send it to any steel recycling plant in the nearby vicinity without worrying about being rejected.

Recycling normal and green propane canisters


It is very easy to spot a green key canister. It will come with a bright green key and carry a label that reads ‘Green Key.’ So if you have a nearly empty green key canister, here is what you do.

Hook the canister to a lantern or stove and run it until the flame dies out. Next, insert the bright green key into the black cap on the canister. Push the key firmly until it locks into the cylinder. This is a clear indication that the tank is indeed empty.

In the case you have a normal propane canister, don’t worry. Simply hook it to the stove/lantern and run it continuously. You will know the canister has run out of fuel when the flame in the lantern/stove diminishes and finally dies.

In both scenarios, call a local recycling program only after you confirm the canister is empty. You can also check for scrap metal dealers who may want to take the canister. Call these recyclers to see if they accept propane canisters (green key or otherwise) and check their operating hours.

Some recycling centers may agree to take propane canisters you provide. The only condition is that you can prove the canister you are bringing in is empty. Depending on their instructions, you may need to saw open the canister before taking it to the recycling center. Some centers may not require this, but would want you to punch a hole through the canister before bringing it in (now do you understand why it is extremely important that you empty the canister completely first?).

The thing about the green key canisters

The thing about green key canisters is that the green key would indicate that the canister is already empty. Thus, it will save you of the burdensome task of having to prove that the canister is indeed empty.

Once you have suitably prepared the canister, take it either to the pickup point as mentioned by the recycling center or to the center itself.

Small sized propane canisters can be extremely hazardous to the environment if disposed of in improperly. The tips mentioned above would help you recycle these canisters in a safe and efficient manner. This way, you will also be protecting yourself and the environment in the process.

Before you go

Just like propane canisters, a lot of other things turn lethal for the environment if we do not dispose of or recycle them in the right manner. Your old car, shockingly, tops the list. Read on to know various ways in which you can recycle your old car and leave a green footprint on nature.

How to Recycle Your Old Car and Go Green

Over the years, technological developments have enabled us to adopt a greener lifestyle in many ways. While recycling paper and plastic was normal in those days, one can recycle almost anything today, even cars. So instead of sending your car to the junkyard, consider opting for these procedures to recycle it.

Donate Your Car



If your call is still in running condition, you can consider donating it to a local charity. These organizations would then repair the car and donate it to someone who needs it. Donating a car would also enable you to earn tax deduction with most local charities giving you a receipt you can use to claim the same.

Recycle Yourself


There are certain components of the car that you can recycle yourself with help from others. These include:

Oil: If you are changing the oil, make it a point to remove the old oil in a bottle. Take it to a gas station that would recycle this oil. Also, ensure to recycle the oil filter in your car as the part can get eroded with time.

Battery: You would need to change your car’s battery at least a few times. Old batteries would need to be recycled in order to contain the toxic in them. You can check with local agencies about battery recycling options. Some companies also have exchange offers wherein you can exchange your old battery and get a new one.

Tires: The car tires would also need to be changed once in a while. You can give away your old tires to stores that recycle them. While retreated tires can be used again, the remaining would be recycled for road turf, fuel, and several other products.

Check for Green Disposal Programs

Check for local companies that offer green disposal programs. These companies are different from junkyards in that they make sure that your car is recycled in the most environmental-friendly manner. Once you register your car for the program, the company would collect your car and offer you appropriate compensation for the same. Your car would then undergo de-pollution in a facility to remove all materials that might harm the environment in one way or another. Following this, your car would be handed over to a recycling facility where the glass, scrap metal, and plastic will be repurposed to develop new products.

Sell Online

A number of companies out there buy used cars. You can search online for such companies. Once you contact them, they would either ask you to drive over to their junkyard or have someone pick up the car for you. You will get competitive compensation for selling your old car as well. These stores would salvage the car as much as possible and send it to the junkyard afterward.

Contact the Junkyard


Many junkyards are into the recycling program as well. These junkyards would remove all the useful parts of your car (including but not limited to headlights, fenders, mufflers, doors, side mirrors, hubcaps, and steel wheels) and sell them in auto shops. For instance, the automotive glass in your car would be used to repair other cars as well as develop new items like floor tiles, drinking glasses, and jewelry and countertops. Once all the necessary parts are removed, the car is recycled properly. All you need to do is ensure that the junkyard you choose follows safe practices when recycling your car. Check around in your neighborhood as well as other nearby areas for junkyards that follow environmental-friendly procedures to recycle vehicles. This way, you can rest assured that your does no harm to the environment as it is repurposed.

There is no need to send your car to a landfill, once you find it useless. These ideas would enable you to recycle your old car in a green manner and benefit from the same via tax deductions.

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