How Much Should a Cardboard Bale Weigh?

19th Apr 2024

Having lots of cardboard waste should be viewed as an opportunity, rather than a problem for businesses in the UK. This is because when baled, uncontaminated cardboard waste can be sold to Cardboard Recyclers if produced in sufficient quantities. To transform your cardboard boxes into bales, you first need to procure a baler. However, not just any machine will do as it’s important that you choose the right baler for your business.

How Does Weight Affect Sales of Cardboard Bales?

In simple terms, the price of a cardboard bale is linked to its weight and size. Recyclers have a preference, therefore meeting their ideal bale specification will help your business achieve the best return. If you are using a vertical baler, Mill Size Bales of Cardboard are the most valuable type to make.  In terms of rebate potential, the more Mill-Sized bales of cardboard you can accumulate the better. For example, if a Recycler can buy 4000kg of cardboard from one business, there’s less transport costs, time and admin involved than buying 8 single bales of 500kg from several different places.

What is the Average Weight of a Cardboard Bale?

The weight of a cardboard bale will depend on the Cardboard Baler used to bale it. The average weight of a bale is around 500kg-600kg (660lb) if produced by a vertical mill size baler. In general, horizontal balers can be used to create much larger bales. Every company will have different needs, budget and storage capacity so, it’s worth considering what size cardboard bales you’re able to store safely and correctly.

What is the Average Price for a Cardboard Bale?

Like any commodity, the price of baled waste cardboard will rise and fall. Between 2022-2024, the value of baled cardboard fluctuated between £50-£150 per tonne. The value of a cardboard bale must not be viewed in isolation. This is because businesses that bale cardboard must also consider the money saved by reducing the volume of waste being put into expensive bins. You must also consider the space saved, as a bale of cardboard can contain the equivalent of numerous bins of loose waste.

Why Can’t You Sell Wet Cardboard Bales?

Wet cardboard cannot be sold because moisture affects the fibres that make up cardboard, making them weaker and more prone to damage. Moisture can also lead to mildew or mold growth on the cardboard itself which renders it unsellable as it cannot be recycled. It’s important to keep cardboard bales away from any water sources and covered from the elements as it can cost thousands in wastage if the bales are affected. Wet cardboard is also difficult to process as it can fall apart during the processing phase and damage the equipment causing huge repair costs and delays.

What Else Can Stop Companies from Accepting Cardboard Bales?

Many companies are unable to accept cardboard bales if they’ve been contaminated. There can be a variety of reasons for contamination depending on the industry the material is derived from. For instance, in the motoring or engineering field cardboard may be contaminated by oils or other mechanical fluids that could mean it isn’t recyclable. One of the more common reasons cardboard cannot be accepted is food residue. Whatever size of bale you make, be sure to keep your bales safe, dry and away from potential contamination. 

Shopping Cardboard Balers at QCR

With a wealth of awards and accreditations, as well as over 25 years of experience, QCR is a leading supplier of recycling equipment across the UK. From Recycling balers to heavy-duty cardboard shredders, we have everything your business needs for its waste solutions and more. From healthcare to education, hospitality to office buildings, we have solutions for all kinds of businesses.

Got a question regarding our services or one of our products? Get in touch with our team of experts via email or telephone and we’ll get back to you right away. 

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