3 Tricks to Transforming Used Pallets
‘Tis the season for costumes and candy. Just as you or your kids will don a disguise on Halloween, pallets can be transformed into something new, too. It’s really quite easy and, by upcycling pallets that have reached the end of their useable service life, you’re keeping them from ending up in the landfill. We’ll tell you how but first, a few facts.
Since 1995, the number of pallets that are recovered each year has grown exponentially (source: U.S. Forest Service). Recovered pallets are those that are picked up by recyclers and refurbished or dismantled for other uses. Currently, over 500 million pallets out of the more than 2 billion in service are recovered every year. The majority are repaired and returned to the shipping cycle. Of what remains, 15 million are chipped or ground for landscaping mulch, animal bedding, boiler fuel, or wood pellets. And, roughly 1.5 million are upcycled into other products. What other products, you might ask and how is it done?
The sky is the limit as it concerns pallet upcycling. Creative hobbyists have used them for everything from enhancing their artwork to assisting with yardwork. To get started, you need to source used pallets or scraps. Your instinct might guide you to a big-box store. But, most national retailers already have a plan in place to recycle or reuse pallets (many utilize Rose Pallet’s customized recycling program). That’s why we recommend doing the following:
- Visit your nearest locally owned (or smaller) businesses and simply ask them if you can take their used pallet material. Good candidates are garden and hardware stores, machine/equipment rental stores, furniture stores, pet shops, and specialty food/beverage stores.
- Wait for a slower period of business so the owners or store managers have time to talk (you don’t want to divert their attention away from paying customers).
- When you ask, be sure to explain why you are looking for their used or scrap pallets. When people are drawn in to your plans, they are more likely to want to help.
For ideas and inspiration to transform your pallet material, refer to our numerous posts on upcycled gift ideas or visit pinterest or 1001pallets.com. We’d love to see what you create; email us a picture and we’ll send you a treat!