A Complete Guide to Mill Size Balers & Bales

19th Oct 2023

Wholesalers, distributors, manufacturers, and removal companies are all examples of businesses that have significant quantities of cardboard to dispose of as part of their day-to-day activities. If your business produces many tonnes of cardboard waste throughout the year, a mill size baler could help you transform this waste product into a source of income. However, there are some important factors that you must first consider, especially if you want to secure the best returns. This guide will run you through the key points to enable you to decide whether this could be commercially the right opportunity for your organisation.

What is the specification of a mill size bale?

To be classed as a Mill size bale, a bale of cardboard must weigh no less than 400kg and be sized W 120cm x H 100cm x D 80cm. This uniformity is to ensure that they can be stacked and transported efficiently to the cardboard recycling mills. Due to their size, the bales must be secured tightly with high quality baling wires and not baling tapes, banding or strings.

How can I make a mill size bale?

Due to the strict size and weight requirements stipulated by the recycling mills, you must ensure you hire or purchase a baler capable of producing consistent bales to the required standard. These balers are commonly referred to a mill size balers and use baler wires to bundle cardboard into dense mill size bales. Mill size balers can bale many different types of recyclable waste in addition to cardboard such as textiles, plastic trays and polythene.

Are mill size balers easy to use?

All mill size baler operators must be trained prior to using the equipment. Due to their wide door opening, mill size balers are generally the most efficient vertical baler to use for crushing cardboard boxes and packaging. Big carboard boxes or rigid cardboard trays can be placed inside the baler whole without the need to manually flatten them first. Staff who would have otherwise had to use lots of physical effort to manhandle cardboard into wheelie bins will breathe a sigh of relief when a waste baler is delivered!

Some balers have features such as sliding doors to make them even more efficient to use. The bale full light removes any uncertainty about creating the perfect bale.

Free baler training & training documentation is offered to all QCR Customers. Refresher training is also available, as are demonstration videos & detailed operator manuals.

Where should I locate a baler?

All vertical and horizontal Waste Balers can be located either inside or outside and ideally as close to the source of waste as possible to maximise productivity. You must ensure that there is adequate space in front of the baler to safely eject the finished bale onto a pallet.

Mill size balers can be utilised to bale a wide range of recyclable materials including cardboard and plastics. Some businesses choose to have one baling machine for each individual waste stream, others choose to put plastic waste into bags and then compact numerous bags once they have sufficient quantity to make a bale.

Your business should also consider where the finished bales will be stored. Although, they will take up far less space than if the waste was kept loose, in order to secure the best value bales need to be collected in bulk. As with all cardboard waste destined to be recycled, it must be kept dry.

How valuable are mill size bales of cardboard?

The value of cardboard, like any commodity, fluctuates greatly over time. However, there are things that your business can do to ensure you get the best return for your mill size bales:

  • Sell your bales to a reputable recycling company
  • Have your bales collected in large quantities, with full lorry loads getting the best returns
  • Produce only high-quality bales free from contaminants (for example food residue)
  • Low moisture content therefore any bales stored outside must be palletised and wrapped in poor weather.

Why should I talk to QCR?

QCR offer brand new and refurbished mill size balers for sale. QCR also offer both short term and longer-term waste baler rental agreements if your business does not want to purchase a machine outright. This is a great cost-effective option for many UK businesses, especially during periods of rising interest rates and economic uncertainty. The monthly fixed mill size baler hire cost includes machine training, machine delivery, equipment servicing and breakdown cover (parts and labour). It also enables you to upgrade to a larger machine if your waste volumes increase unexpectedly.

QCR will also introduce all our customers to our nationwide network of trusted mill size bale collection companies.

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