Knives are sturdy tools that can stand the test of time.
However, most knives in your kitchen have a useful life beyond which they cannot be used. Some of them become dull, regardless of how often you sharpen them.
After a knife breaks down, there is no other option but to dispose of it and buy a new one.
So, how do you get rid of an old knife?
How to Dispose Of Kitchen Knives
To dispose of old kitchen knives, there are so many things you can do instead of tossing them with other household trash.
Donate the Kitchen Knives
Before you start evaluating ways of knife disposal, it is better to think for a moment about their utility. Even though a particular knife is useless for you, you can always donate it to someone who can make good use of it.
Start your research, and you will be amazed at the number of charitable organizations that want old knives badly.
However, before you send them over, make sure that the specific charitable organization is accepting used kitchen items like knives.
Before donating the knife, make sure it is safely covered. Therefore, nobody will get hurt by the sharp instrument. To begin with, wrap it up in a disposable cloth or an old newspaper and place it in a cardboard box.
After placing the knife in the cardboard box, tape the box with heavy-duty masking tape. To avoid any confusion, write “Knives” with a permanent black marker on the box.
There is another safer option to cover your knife in the form of a bubble-wrap. Wrap your knives in several layers of bubble-wrap and place them in the same box, followed by the same process as with cloth and paper.
Before sending them over, let the courier company know what’s kept inside.
Recycle the knives
Besides donating them, recycling old knives is also a useful option. Several recycling companies are willing to accept old kitchen items, including used knives.
So, if your kitchen knives are not in a position to be donated, but you don’t want to throw them either, check if your local recycling company is willing to take them.
If they do, your job is half over. All you have to do is toss the used knife into the recycling company’s scrapheap. They will melt the metal down, and turn it into other useful objects.
Recycling old kitchen knives is one of the perfect ways to get rid of them. Instead of going to waste, they will be transformed into something of great utility.
Sell these off
The good news is that your old kitchen knives aren’t as useless as you think they are. To be honest, there is a significant amount of money that can be made by selling old kitchen knives.
You can sell your old and used kitchen knives for scrap metal. Unlike other perishable materials, metal is extremely useful. It can be transformed into multiple forms and can be used over and over again, without losing its quality.
Unfortunately, not many people are aware of the monetary benefits of selling old knives and metal objects.
However, with the right kind and amount of research, you will come to know that the marketplace is stashed with dozens of metal dealers. These dealers will not only accept steel scrap but will also pay you good money for it.
A majority of knives in your kitchen drawer are made of steel. However, some knives are made from a mixture of steel and similar metals. Before selling your old knives in the marketplace, make sure to determine what kind of metal your knives have been made from.
The price they pay depends upon the metal used in your knife. Selling old knives can be profitable, especially if there is a bunch of them stashed in your kitchen, ready to be replaced by new ones.
Throw Them Away
If none of the aforementioned tips and tricks seems pragmatic enough, you are left with only one option.
That is to dispose of your old knives into the trash. As discussed above, you can’t throw them into the trash either. So, how are you supposed to throw away old knives? Let’s find out.
Here are some simple tips that will enable you to ensure the safe disposal of your old kitchen knives.
This one we have already discussed in the previous paragraphs. Let’s talk about it in detail. The blade of your knife is what causes damage. Therefore, take several layers of old newspaper, and wrap it tightly around the blade.
In most cases, 7 to 8 layers of newspaper are good enough. Make sure that every inch of the blade is covered in a newspaper and not even a single inch remains exposed.
However, leave the handle exposed so you can identify what the newspaper is hiding. After you are done wrapping the newspaper around the blade of your knife, tape it tightly to make the package safe for disposal.
A safe alternative to wrapping your knife in layers of newspaper is wrapping it in bubble wrap. However, the bubble wrap should be tied around your knife’s blade in the same way as you did the newspaper.
Make sure you wrap a significant amount of bubble wrap around the blade and leave the handle exposed.
After the blade is covered in bubble wrap, tape it tightly with a heavy-duty polythene tape to seal it safely.
One of the safest ways to cover your knives before discarding them is with cardboard wraps. However, cardboard is not at all flexible, therefore, a certain amount of creativity is expected at your end.
Take a big piece of cardboard that is longer and wider than the knife itself, and fold it into half. The cardboard will take the shape of a booklet. Open up the cardboard and place the knife inside it.
The sharper end of the blade should be against the fold of your cardboard wrap. Now, close the cardboard wrap and tape it with high-quality masking tape.
Taping will make the package safe and secure. If you have an old shoebox or a carton, place the cardboard wrap, containing the knife into it, and tape it.
If you have neither of the aforementioned wrappings, a few layers of old cloth would be good enough. However, wrapping a knife with old cloth isn’t the safest option to consider, but it is much better than throwing away a naked blade.
One of the downsides of using a cloth wrap is that cloth can unwrap pretty quickly. Furthermore, sometimes the cloth gets torn by the sharp blade, which makes it more prone to causing damage.
Keeping this in mind, if you resort to wrapping your knife with a cloth, make sure to apply several layers, and wrap them tightly.
After wrapping your knife with layers of old cloth, tape it firmly. Doing so, you will mitigate any chance of the blade getting exposed.
Also read: Paper Plates vs. Washing Dishes
Where to Donate Old Kitchen Knives
A couple of paragraphs back, we talked about donating old kitchen knives.
We also talked about charitable organizations that are more than willing to accept old kitchen items, but they aren’t the only ones. There is a variety of other places where these sharp objects can be donated. Some of them are mentioned below.
- Local homeless shelters, orphanages, and soup kitchens where food is prepared.
- Local food and culinary technology training institutions.
- Kitchen in your local restaurant.
If your knives are of good quality or vintage, you can put them up for auction and make good money out of them.
Make sure to discuss the issue with a local auctioneer, if they are willing to sell your vintage knives. You can either keep the money or donate the amount for charitable purposes.
If you have made up your mind about throwing away your knives in the trash, make sure whether or not it is okay to do so.
Regardless of how carefully you have wrapped your knives, the local laws might say differently about disposing of sharp objects like knives.
Therefore, make sure to read up your local laws, about wrapping up knives and similar tools and throwing them into the trash, before doing so.
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