Recycling to Create Composite Building Materials - dummies

Recycling to Create Composite Building Materials

By Eric Corey Freed

Combining recycled materials into a new product is a good green goal. Made from recycled plastic and sawdust, composite lumbers are much healthier and more environmentally friendly than wood. They don’t warp, splinter, or need staining. The maintenance savings alone is reason enough to consider composite lumber. Composite lumber is available from dozens of manufacturers; look for the companies that offer the highest recycled content planks.

You can also get composite countertops made from recycled paper and a resin binder. These have a warm, neutral look that fits well with most decorating styles. This material looks similar to other popular solid-surface countertops like Corian, but because they’re only about one-third plastic, they have a more natural look and feel. Many people compare these green alternatives to soapstone.

You can have special features incorporated into the countertops, such as a drain board next to an under-mount sink, or casting metal rods near the stove, creating a built-in trivet.