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So many people are starting to take the threat of climate change seriously now. As the world is starting to see the impact of climate change on a regular basis, people are trying to think about what they can do to make a difference.

Even small actions such as choosing to recycle plastic products can help to protect the planet. If you have been trying to focus on recycling everything that you can, then you might be curious about what you can do with balloons.

Balloons appear to be made using materials that you would think can be recycled. However, you might not be entirely sure if you can recycle balloons.

Can you recycle balloons or are they items that can only be thrown away? Read on to learn more about balloons and what you need to do with them when you’re trying to be environmentally responsible.

Not All Balloons Can Be Recycled

Sadly, not all balloons can be recycled, and some balloons are going to be more harmful to the environment than others. If you’re someone who cares about the environment, then you likely want to ensure that you only use balloons that can be recycled.

Many recycling centers won’t accept balloons because there isn’t really a use for the materials that they’re made out of in the market. Basically, the amount of material that can be recycled from many balloons wouldn’t be worthwhile from a market perspective.

There might be some recycling centers that will have special programs that are centered around recycling balloons. However, this is going to differ from place to place, and some cities in America still have very few recycling centers.

You’re not always going to have an easy time recycling balloons even if they’re made out of certain materials. For this reason, it might be better to not buy balloons at all.

If you’re someone who is very concerned about the environmental impact of products such as balloons, then it would be better to not use them. If you must use balloons, then you could try to find other uses for the balloons after you’re done with them instead of simply throwing them in the garbage.

Keep reading and you’ll be able to learn more about recycling balloons and the various types of materials that balloons are made out of. You’ll also hear a bit about what you can do with balloons if you aren’t able to recycle them.

Latex Balloons

Latex balloons can’t really be recycled because they don’t have materials that can be used in anything with market value. You’ll find that latex balloons are made using rubber materials.

Rubber is actually natural since it comes from the sap of the rubber tree. This means that rubber materials can biodegrade over time, and they aren’t quite as harmful to the environment as foil balloons.

That being said, a latex balloon isn’t going to biodegrade fast in a landfill. It’s thought that a latex balloon could stick around for two years before completely biodegrading.

This means that you should try to find other ways to dispose of latex balloons if you care about the environment. Latex balloons could easily be harmful to wildlife, and you don’t want to cause negative things to happen to animals or fish due to the improper disposal of latex balloons.

Thankfully, it’s possible to get rid of latex balloons in a way that will be as good for the environment as possible. You can choose to place old latex balloons in your compost bin.

If you put latex balloons in your compost bin, then they’re going to biodegrade a lot faster. They’ll wind up being turned into compost and you won’t have to worry so much.

When you have to purchase balloons for a party, it’s going to be good to dispose of the balloons in this fashion. It isn’t hard to make a compost bin, and it’s something that you might be doing anyway if you care about the environment.

Foil Balloons

Foil balloons are often referred to as Mylar balloons as well. These types of balloons are made using nylon materials and types of metalized plastic.

Balloons like this are primarily made of synthetic plastic materials, and that means that they are not biodegradable. Sadly, balloons like this could wind up being around for decades if not longer.

If you throw out foil balloons and they wind up in landfills, then they aren’t going to be going away anytime soon. The good news is that you should be able to recycle these balloons instead of throwing them away.

Most recycling companies should take Mylar balloons and recycle them. They’re made out of mostly plastic materials, and that means that they can be recycled effectively.

If your curbside recycling pickup company doesn’t accept foil balloons, then you don’t have to give up. There might be a local recycling business that will allow you to drop off items such as foil balloons for recycling.

Whatever you do, it’s not going to be wise to throw the balloons away. They cause harm to the environment and endanger wildlife if they wind up in a landfill or otherwise make it out into the world.

You’re also going to want to be careful not to accidentally release these balloons. If you let go of these balloons while they’re filled with helium and they escape from you, then they could land in a body of water or some other area where they could do real harm to the environment.

Reusing Foil Balloons

It’s also possible to simply reuse foil balloons instead of getting rid of them. If the foil balloons are in good shape, then they can be inflated again and used for their intended purpose.

You can simply deflate the foil balloon carefully while trying your best to avoid ripping the balloon. If you can deflate the balloon successfully, then you’ll be able to fold the foil balloon and keep it somewhere safe until you need it again.

Once you have another birthday party that requires balloons, it’ll be possible to simply inflate the balloon once more. If this isn’t possible, then there are still things that you can do with the foil balloon instead of throwing it out.

Some people have decided to use foil balloons as decorations. These balloons often have interesting patterns or sayings, and you could hang them up on your wall or something like that.

There are even people who have repurposed foil balloons to help make Christmas decorations. You could wrap some of the foil around a rubber ball to make an ornament that could be hung up on a Christmas tree.

You could use foil balloons to create gift wrapping to make a special present. The festive nature of these balloons makes them well-suited to be used for such decorative purposes.

It might even be possible to turn foil balloons into some type of outfit. You can get really creative with ways to repurpose foil balloons if you have the time.

A foil balloon might make it easy for you to create a decorative raincoat of some sort. You have a large number of options to consider, and which one will be the best will depend on your sensibilities.

If worse comes to worst, then you can always just recycle the foil balloon. Do what you think is best and you’ll be doing just fine.

Final Thoughts

Now that you know more about the different types of balloons and whether they can be recycled, it’ll be easier to know what to do. Latex balloons can’t really be recycled, but they are at least biodegradable due to being made out of rubber materials.

It does take years for latex balloons to biodegrade in a landfill, though, and that means that you can dispose of them in better ways. Many people have taken to putting latex balloons in their compost bins due to it being such an environmentally friendly option.

Latex balloons will biodegrade much faster when they’re used as compost. It’s a good way to get rid of balloons that you bought for a special occasion, but foil balloons cannot be composted.

Foil balloons are not biodegradable, and you’re going to need to recycle those. Thankfully, many recycling plants will take Mylar balloons, and you should be able to get rid of them in this way without it being a big deal.

If you’re having trouble finding a recycling center that will take Mylar balloons, then you could choose to repurpose them instead. There are so many things that you could do, such as using the balloons as decorations or even just trying to keep them safe so that they can be inflated once more.

Do your best to use balloons responsibly so that you don’t contribute to environmental issues. If you take the time to recycle as many things as you can, then you’ll be able to feel confident that you’re doing your part for the sake of the world.

Remember to tell your friends to properly dispose of balloons as well. If everyone makes an effort to be careful not to negatively impact the environment, then things can start to change for the better.

Author

I have a bachelor's degree in Film/Video/Media Studies, as well as an associates degree in Communications. I began producing videos and musical recordings nearly 15 years ago. I am a guitarist and bassist in Southwest MI and have been in a few different bands since 2009, and in 2012 I began building custom guitars and basses in my home workshop as well. When I'm home, I love spending time with my three pets (a dog, cat, and snake) and gardening in my backyard.

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