Many people use the terms recycled and reclaimed interchangeably without realising that they refer to two different processes.
As more people become aware of the environmental impact their purchasing decisions have, the demand for environmentally friendly and sustainable products is growing.
When buying products like furniture and flooring you will frequently come across recycled and reclaimed products.
To make informed buying decisions, it’s important to understand the difference between the two.
Reclaiming and recycling – what’s the difference?
Reclaimed items could be described as second-hand items. When an item is reclaimed it is reused in its existing form either for its original purpose or an alternative purpose.
Recycled products, on the other hand, are items that have been made using old materials that have been broken down and repurposed into something new.
Which is better?
Whilst buying either reclaimed or recycled products is better than buying new, reclaimed products generally have the least environmental impact as reclaiming involves no further manufacturing. Whereas recycling will usually require energy to create the new product from the recycled materials.
Other benefits of buying reclaimed
As well as being kind on the environment, reclaimed wood has several other benefits including its aesthetics and durability.
Reclaimed products are usually full of character. They can be aged, weathered, uneven, and have their own history, making every piece wonderfully unique.
When buying reclaimed wood products, you will often find that they are made from high quality, solid wood which is durable and long-lasting. Buying reclaimed allows you to buy high quality items at affordable prices, making it a cost-effective solution.
Reclaimed furniture, fixtures and fittings tend to last much longer and look and perform much better than cheap, flat-packed furniture. Invest a little more to get a unique, high quality product that you will still be enjoying in your home for years to come.