What Can I Burn in an Incinerator?

Incinerators can be extremely useful items to have in your garden. You don’t have to wait for your local bin collections, and you can dispose of your green rubbish efficiently and effectively whenever convenient. The trouble is, not everything can be disposed of with fire, for both environmental and safety reasons. 

Whatever you burn, please do it respnsibly with consideration for both the environment i.e. could these material have been composted or recyled, and your neighbours (e.g. dont burn for prolonged periods or when peopls have washing on the line)

Below you’ll find a list of items that can be burned safely and also a number of items that you should never attempt to burn in your incinerators. 

Home Incinerators

There are only a selection of items that may be be interested in disposing of via your home incinerator.

General Waste

General household waste like newspaper, cardboard products and fabrics (such as old curtains, clothes and bedding) should not be disposed of via incineration. Although clearly flammable there are many other waste streams this could be diverted into.  Most paper-based products can be easily recyled either via kerb-side collections or at your local facility. Good clean clothes etc can also be donated to clothes banks or chairty stores.

Remember, it is an offence to dispose of domestic waste in a way likely to cause pollution or harm to human health.

Food Waste

You shouldnt be burning food waste in a garden incinerator. If you have green food waste like fruit, vegetables, potatoes, tea-bags or egg shells than invest in a compost bin to compliment your garden.  If you have processed food that is waste then we suggest using the domestic refuse service as the right method. Some people will put processed food waste into the recyling bins but please be aware of rats, mice and foxes scavenging in our garden. 


if you want to remove useless pieces of furniture, like broken doors, chipped cupboards tables etc you should be using recycling facilities.  If the items are in good condition why not see if a local charity would be interested. 

Garden Waste

The diposal of garden waste is the primary function of your incinerator. At various points of the year your garden produces varying amounts of green waste- be that hedge cuttings, lawn cuttings, leaves, twigs or larger branches from tree's etc and it can be really annoying to be left with large bundles that may be left there for days or even weeks before a recycling service comes to collect them from your home. Indeed there may not be the facility to recycle some of these items.

This is the type and volume of waste that you should be using a garden incinerator for.

What Shouldn’t You Burn?

Apart from the above there are obvious items, like batteries especially, that carry clear warnings that they should not be be disposed of in fires. Obviously, if you come across any items like this, you should not ignore their stated information. However, other items may not be labelled with these warnings, but this doesn’t mean that they can be disposed of in an incinerator.

All plastics, rubber or painted materials should not be burned due to the pollutants they release when undergoing incineration. You should also avoid trying to burn any heavy metals such as mercury or lead; this is potentially dangerous to the environment as well as to your health.


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