Black box

bins - black box

You can  recycle a wide variety of materials using your kerbside black box collection service.

All household glass, cans, foil, aerosols and batteries, small electrical items such as toasters, kettles, hand held games consoles, power tools and textiles can be recycled using your black box. As a guide, anything larger that a four slice toaster would be considered a large electrical item.

For most households your black box is collected every two weeks alongside your blue bin or brown bin.

To check when your black box is next due to be collected visit the view your recycling calendar page.

To find out how your black box service will change as the recycling trolley service is launched during 2018 visit the frequently asked questions page for the recycling trolley. 

Rural locations

Our black box collection service operates slightly differently for rural uplifts, with the black box uplifted alongside the red box and food caddy each week.

Glass recycling

Place all glass bottles and jars, regardless of colour in your black box. Please wash before placing into the black box in order to remove any food residue. Plastic lids should be removed and placed in your red box. Metal lids can be kept on. You do not have to remove labels.

You can also put glass in bottle banks at our recycling centres and local recycling points.

Can recycling

You can also use your kerbside black box to recycle aluminium and steel cans or you can take them to can banks at our recycling centres or local recycling points. Drinks cans, food cans and pet food cans are all suitable for recycling.

Because metals like aluminium and steel aren’t altered when they are melted down they can be endlessly recycled.  The recycling process saves up to 95% of the energy compared to making the metals from their raw materials, as well as cutting
greenhouse gas emissions.

Each household uses approximately 600 food tins 380 drink cans per year. Recycling one can saves enough energy to power a computer for one hour or power a television for 3 hours. (Metal Matters).

It can take as little as six weeks for a drink can to be recycled, and back on the supermarket shelf as another can.

Household batteries, foil and aerosols

You should place household batteries in a plastic bag in your black box for collection and recycling - you can use any clear plastic bag(i.e. food bags). Aerosol cans such as air fresheners, hairsprays and deodorants can also be recycled.

Do not pierce, crush or flatten aerosols before recycling. Clean aluminium foil and food trays can be placed in the black box too.

To check if a foil container is aluminium, put it through a ‘scrunch’ test. Simply scrunch the item in your fist, then release your grip. If the foil has stayed scrunched, then it is aluminium, and can be recycled. If it pops out into its original form, it is not aluminium and should be put in with your rubbish (green/grey bin)/not in with your recycling.

The average household uses 27 aerosols, 182 foil trays each year. Britain uses over 425,000 miles of household foil every year - that'll take you around the world 17 times. (Metal Matters)

Small electrical items

You can also recycle small electrical items such as hairdryers, kettles, drills, small games consoles and textiles using the fortnightly black box collection. Simply place electrical items (no bigger in size than a standard four slice toaster) within the black box. If an item is too big for this collection service, it will be left at the kerbside.

All larger electrical items such as TVs, microwaves, computers and fridges can be taken directly to our Recycling Centres by residents themselves. Items can also be collected by Waste Management Services if a bulky uplift service is requested. 


Please put clean dry clothes and paired shoes in sacks, secure by tying handles (or knot) and place either alongside or on top of the black box for collection. Textile recycling bags are distributed by collection crews. Using the bags provided will ensure that all collected textiles are handled by the Council's appointed textile re-processor. If you don't have a Council supplied recycling bag to hand, please secure your items in a carrier bag or small bin liner.

General guidance 

Please do not place any of the following items in your black box:

  • plastic bags (except for clear bags containing household batteries or battery bags)  
  • broken glass
  • Pyrex
  • drinking glasses
  • glass dishes
  • mirrors

These cannot be recycled in the same process and should be disposed of in your household refuse bin.

If the wrong items are placed in your black box, it may not be collected. If this happens a contamination sticker will be placed on your box with a contact number to call. Once the contaminant is removed please call the number to arrange for your box to be emptied.

Should you find that one black box is not sufficient for your household's recycling needs, contact Waste Management Services. We can supply additional black boxes as required. 

Contact Information

Waste Management Services
Western Road Depot
East Ayrshire
Telephone: 01563 554033
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