FAQs about Recycling Concrete

Is it feasible to recycle concrete?

The recycling and re-use of concrete aggregate makes sense. Here are the value engineering benefits:

  • Produce specification sized recycled aggregates at your location
  • Minimize impact to community infrastructure by reducing import and export trucking
  • Avoid haul-off costs and landfill disposal fees
  • Eliminate the expense of aggregate material imports and exports
  • Increase project efficiency and improve job cost—recycled concrete aggregates yield more volume by weight (up to 15%)


What are the major markets for recycled concrete?

Markets for recycled concrete are ever expanding. To date, recycled concrete aggregate has been use in/as aggregate base course (road base), ready mix concrete, asphalt pavement, soil stabilization, pipe bedding and landscape materials. Learn more. 


How is recycled concrete processed?

Products aside from base course are high quality aggregate, processed in steps with time and effort involved in crushing, pre-sizing, sorting, screening and contaminant elimination. Denominator is to start with a clean, quality, rubble in order to meet design criteria much more easily.


Are there any regulatory concerns regarding recycling or use of recycled concrete?

Regulatory issues vary from state to state and agency to agency. In 2005, California wrote legislation mandating and accepting the use of recycled into new concrete. Generally, American Society for Testing and Materials (ASTM) and American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials (AASHTO) are national trendsetters on issues accepted by agencies across the U.S. Their specifications allowing for recycled aggregate use reinforces confidence in recycled products.


Is concrete recycling regulated?

Nearly every DOT is beginning to or has already satisfied themselves of the economic or quality standard of recycled aggregates.

Additional research continues to be conducted by The Recycled Materials Resource Center (RMRC) at the University of Wisconsin.