What gauge wire is best for baling plastic?

The best wire gauge for baling plastic depends on the type of baler as well as the size and weight of your bales. For vertical balers, we recommend 12–13 gauge wire. For horizontal balers, we recommend 11–12 gauge wire, and for two-ram balers, we recommend 10–12 gauge wire.

Ask your baler manufacturer, read your baler’s instruction manual, or talk to us to find the best baling wire for your equipment.

Choose a wire gauge based on the tensile strength and load strength requirements of your plastic bales. Your wire’s load strength should exceed the weight of the bale. We suggest going with a heavier-duty wire with a higher load strength if there is any uncertainty. 

Remember, wire gauge is inversely correlated to wire diameter. The larger the diameter, the smaller the gauge, and vice versa. Lower gauges (thicker wires) will typically offer a higher load strength than higher gauges.

Best baling wire for plastic

We carry several wire options for baling plastic. The best type of wire for baling plastic will also depend on storage conditions and duration. Here are some of the best options:

  • Black annealed wire feeds smoothly through high-volume automatic baling machines that are commonly used in plastic recycling.
  • Galvanized wire is less commonly used for baling plastic. But if your bales require long-term storage, the galvanizing process offers increased resistance to rust and corrosion to keep bales safe and secure.
  • Single loop bale ties can be tied to different lengths to accommodate inconsistent bale sizes. They work with manual horizontal and vertical balers. We offer both black annealed and galvanized single loop bale ties. Galvanized bale ties offer enhanced abrasion resistance.
  • Double loop bale ties are pre-cut to length for use in auto-tie balers. The double loop configuration accelerates the tying process, increasing productivity.

Benefits of recycling plastic

Plastic recycling benefits the environment, the economy, and society as a whole. Some benefits of plastic recycling include:

  • Reduced landfill waste. According to the EPA, recycling and composting prevented 94 million tons of material from ending up in landfills in 2018.
  • Conservation of natural resources. The manufacture of new plastic products from recycled materials requires less energy and fewer raw materials than the production of plastics from virgin resources.
  • Lower greenhouse gas emissions. Plastic recycling can help mitigate climate change by reducing the amount of energy needed for plastic production.
  • Job creation and economic support. The recycling industry creates jobs in collection, processing, and manufacturing.
  • Protection of wildlife and ecosystems. Plastic recycling reduces the amount of plastic waste that ends up in oceans, rivers, and other natural habitats.

Plastic recycling is a step towards a more sustainable future. Active participation in plastic recycling programs and support for businesses that use recycled materials can help minimize the environmental impact of plastic waste and preserve our planet for future generations.

The plastic recycling process

Plastic undergoes the following process as part of its circular economy:

  1. Collection and sorting. Plastic waste is collected and sorted at a waste material recovery facility. Different types of plastics are separated and prepared for recycling.
  2. Baling process. The sorted plastic waste is then compressed into dense bales.
  3. Sale to processors. The plastic bales are sold to plastic processors or recycling facilities.
  4. Arrival at processing destination. Upon arrival at the processing destination, the bales are prepared for the recycling process. This may involve re-baling smaller bales into mill-size bales.
  5. Shredding and cleaning. The plastic bales are shredded into smaller pieces. These shreds are then cleaned and filtered to remove any impurities.
  6. Granulation. The cleaned, shredded plastic is melted and formed into pellets.
  7. Manufacturing new products. The plastic pellets are then used to manufacture new products. Depending on the type of plastic, these recycled products can range from new plastic bottles and containers to textiles, outdoor furniture, and building materials.
  8. Distribution and sale. Recycled products are then distributed and sold to consumers, completing the recycling loop.

Not all plastic waste can be recycled due to contamination or the type of plastic.

Plastic recycling tips

Some key tips for recycling plastic include:

  • Rinse plastic containers to remove food residue and prevent contamination.
  • Check local recycling guidelines to identify accepted plastic types and preparation requirements.
  • Remove caps, lids, and labels from plastic containers when possible.
  • Do not include non-recyclable items such as toys, hangers, or electronics in the recycling bin.
  • Opt for reusable products to reduce overall plastic waste.

Baling wire products we offer

Baling Wire Direct sells the following high-quality baling wire products.

Baling Wire FAQ

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