What do you do with empty toilet paper rolls?

@mentalward (14697)
United States
November 16, 2008 7:56am CST
I like to recycle and reuse anything I can and I've wondered some time now about toilet paper rolls. There MUST be a good use for them! I've been saving them up for awhile now and was thinking of maybe pouring concrete mix into them next Spring to make a border for my flower beds out of these little concrete cylinders. Of course, I'll have to figure out a way to keep them together so they don't fall over! Does anyone else here do anything with them besides throw them in the trash, compost bin or recycle bin?
5 people like this
20 responses
@LadyMarissa (12161)
• United States
16 Nov 08
My church collects them to use in Vacation Bible School. They have the younger kids make all kind of different things with them. Not having any young children, I've not been a recipient of one of these gifts!!!
@mentalward (14697)
• United States
17 Nov 08
Aw, now that's not right! Okay, everybody here... make something from your empty toilet paper rolls and send them to LadyMarissa right now!!! That really is a cool idea, Lady, letting the kids make things from them! I'm going to ask around now to see if any churches nearby would like them for the kids! (I've collected so many!!! LOL) Thanks for sharing!!!
1 person likes this
@LadyMarissa (12161)
• United States
17 Nov 08
NOOOOOOOOOOOO!!! I wasn't complaining. I'm sure I don't want what they make. I cannot even imagine what it would be. I think they just put out a box of empty rolls on the table & let the kids use their imagination. My brain cannot think of anything cute to make from them...except your idea of concrete cylinders. I do like that idea!!!
@mentalward (14697)
• United States
17 Nov 08
I was just kidding about that... you'd be inundated with silly little craft projects! I know... my kids used to come home from school with them and I'd HAVE to display them somewhere or their feelings would get hurt. Also, my sister, who had muscular dystrophy and brain damage, was always making craft projects as well in the nursing home. I have so many things that she's made! I have a hard time getting rid of any of them since she passed away 5 years ago and I'll never get anything new but I still don't know what to do with them all!
1 person likes this
@ElicBxn (60884)
• United States
16 Nov 08
well, I've heard you can use them to stuff plastic bags in to hold them for other uses - I hear a tp roll can hold 5 bags...
2 people like this
@mentalward (14697)
• United States
17 Nov 08
You know, that would be a great thing to keep in your car! There have been times when I wanted or needed a plastic bag in my car but didn't have one. Okay, this is definitely one thing I'm going to use them for... I'll do that today! Keeps the bags nice and tidy, too! I have a plastic bag holder in my kitchen that hangs on the wall but that really is an awesome idea for the car! Doesn't take up much room, either and would fit right in the glove compartment! Thanks!!!
1 person likes this
@ElicBxn (60884)
• United States
17 Nov 08
Glad I could help! Think I got it from Helouise
@Thoroughrob (11750)
• United States
16 Nov 08
We use them for fire starters. We fill them with the lint from the dryer. My husband has a wood burner in the garage, and we go camping in the summer. It really helps to get the fire going.
2 people like this
@mentalward (14697)
• United States
17 Nov 08
COOL!!! I had never thought of that! I've often wondered if dryer lint could be used for something as well! Awesome!!! I don't have a fireplace () but we do have a firepit! I've actually bought some fire starter sticks. Making FREE fire starters is a MUCH better idea! My son has a fireplace so I'll make some for him. Awesome!!! Thanks so much for this great suggestion!!! Now, I'll work on saving up that lint!
• Canada
17 Nov 08
That is a double header. You get to use up two useless products dryer lint and toilet paper rolls and save money to boot.
@Grandmaof2 (7603)
• Canada
16 Nov 08
I do file them under G for garbage but I do have a couple I put Mac Tac covering over them to give them some class then I use them to store my appliance cords. I have one I use to hold my cord to my hand mix master, coffee urn cord and one for my portable clock radio I take camping.
2 people like this
@mentalward (14697)
• United States
17 Nov 08
I read something similar above. Using them for extension cords. I have a drawer full of cords, all kinds... extension, appliance, computer, etc. and they always get so mixed up! I'm definitely going to use some to clean up that drawer! Thanks so much for your idea!
@winterose (39918)
• Canada
16 Nov 08
mine go in the recycle bag, we actually get a fine from the city if we do not recycle.
2 people like this
@mentalward (14697)
• United States
17 Nov 08
If it weren't for the fact that I KNOW that these things could be used for something or other, they'd be going in my recycle bag as well. We recycle everything! We don't get fined, but I like the idea of recycling. I've never liked throwing anything away.
@Chevee (5915)
• United States
16 Nov 08
I use mines for storing electrical extensions cords in. I fold the cord up so that it will slide through the openings. I can't think of any other use right now.
2 people like this
@mentalward (14697)
• United States
17 Nov 08
That's a GREAT idea, Chevee! I never thought of that but it sure makes sense! It would keep the extension cords from getting tangled up with each other! I have a drawer full of cords right now and it's a real pain going through them to find a particular one. I guess you could even mark the toilet paper roll with whatever is in it, how long it is, etc. Awesome! Thanks so much for sharing!
@yukyrob (167)
• Philippines
16 Nov 08
they can be recycled like constructing a design through it or let them be painted and give them to the toddlers as their toy.
2 people like this
@mentalward (14697)
• United States
17 Nov 08
I have a cat who likes to play with them, too. He plays with anything that rolls! I guess, as long as the toddlers don't try to chew on them, they'd make great toys!
• Netherlands
16 Nov 08
Either recycle them or give them to my mother who uses them for her hobby. She makes all kinds of different things so she could use anything really. Very creative.
2 people like this
@mentalward (14697)
• United States
17 Nov 08
That's really cool, mdesigning! I'm glad I'm not the only one who uses things like this for craftwork! I do all kinds of crafts, too. That's why I wanted ideas for using these rolls. I've been collecting them and have quite a few of them now. Does your mother do any paper quilling? I've just started learning that craft and I love it, but have never used paper as thick as toilet paper rolls... yet.
@Nhey16 (2519)
• Philippines
17 Nov 08
i've used some for my daughter's project, a robot... but usually i collect them, then i sell them in a junk shop... :)
@mentalward (14697)
• United States
17 Nov 08
Sell them in a junk shop? What in the world would a junk shop buy them for? I'm curious, now. I love the robot idea! I would love to see it. You wouldn't happen to have a picture of it, would you?
@Nhey16 (2519)
• Philippines
18 Nov 08
the junk shops are the ones responsible for selling them to the companies that recycle things... i also collect and sell other stuffs to the junk shops like old newspapers, plastic bottles and other plastics... instead of just throwing my trash, i could still earn and at the same time, i guess it's one way of helping our mother nature... i would still have to look where i put the photo file of the robot... it was just a simple robot project :)
@nanajanet (4436)
• United States
17 Nov 08
My little granddaughter and the cat like to play with them, lol. We recycle or burn our paper and cardboard. Stuff we cannot recycle gets put into our fire pit.
1 person likes this
@mentalward (14697)
• United States
17 Nov 08
I've put in an order for grandchildren. It's just a matter of being patient now. LOL We have a firepit so I'll probably use some of them in that. Someone else here suggested filling them with dryer lint and use them as fire starters! That's a great idea because you're getting rid of two things but in a useful way instead of just burning them. I'd recycle them if I couldn't think of anything else to do with them because we recycle everything! Even tiny little pill bottles from the pharmacy!
1 person likes this
@nanajanet (4436)
• United States
17 Nov 08
That is a good idea!! I put dryer lint in the fire but doing them together is a great idea!! Now I will not give them all to the grandkid, lol.
@mariposaman (2967)
• Canada
17 Nov 08
Rinse off the used toilet paper and reroll around the empty rolls. Just kidding. I just put them in with the box cardboard in the recycle bin. Have you noticed some fo the roll centers have become larger. There are actually less sheets on the roll but the larger cardboard center sleeve makes it look like more.
1 person likes this
@mentalward (14697)
• United States
17 Nov 08
Ewwwwww! What a thought! I've noticed their little tricks to make you think you're getting more when you really aren't, yep! Sometimes, the paper is rolled so loosely, if you squeezed them they'd actually be half as thick! I stick to a well-known brand name. There are just some things in this world you should never skimp on... toilet paper is one of them!
• Canada
17 Nov 08
I do use them to hold the smaller extension cords like some others here. I find it much better than the elastic bands or anything else I have found so far. When the become tattered they can still enter the recycle bin but by that time I have plenty more.
@ahgong (10066)
• Singapore
17 Nov 08
Well, the make great artwork material for kids to use. They can make a variety of things from toys to table pencle holders to letter holders for the door. The number of things they can make out of it is limited by their imagination! I love to use them for collecting smaller stuff. Just need to give the toilet roll a base and then I can put lots of little stuff like nuts, screws, bolts when I am working on a project. Prevents the little stuff from rolling all over the place when you are working on a project. And when it is too damanged to be used, well, replace it. It is cheap and easy to make. And very useful if you have a very small workspace or work top.
@mentalward (14697)
• United States
17 Nov 08
You know, you have a really great idea there! I make jewelry and have tons of beads, spacers, clasps, etc. I could cut the roll in thirds, maybe, and glue a bunch of them onto a large base to hold everything. Right now, I have each thing in little plastic bags and it's not always easy to get what I need out of them without spilling them sometimes. That's a really good idea and I'm definitely going to make that. Thanks so much, ahgong! GREAT tip!!!
1 person likes this
@ahgong (10066)
• Singapore
19 Nov 08
ha ha ha ha... I am glad that it is helpful to you. Mabbe when you do make them into little containers, you can take a picture to share! I am also interested to see your other works of art with toilet rolls. Can you share some pictures with me?
@cream97 (29168)
• United States
17 Nov 08
I usually will throw mines away.. I never keep them..
1 person likes this
@cream97 (29168)
• United States
17 Nov 08
I will try to start recycling them.. We have no recycling around... But, I do plan to recycle on my own.
1 person likes this
@SangsTurks (1447)
• India
17 Nov 08
Well, as of now i use them to recycle the wax from used candles!! yes, you heard that right, i take all the melted wax from the candle stands and heat it so that it becomes liquid...and then i pour it into the toilet roll (i have to close one end with something nice and out in a thich thread through the center) let the wax cool, cut off the toilet roll and ther is another new candle to use!! When i was in school i use to change the empty toilet roll into a "pen stand"!! OR into a small vase, in which i used to put in dried flowers.
@mentalward (14697)
• United States
17 Nov 08
Those are some pretty good ideas, Sangs! Someone else here mentioned using them as candle molds, too. I used to save the wax from used candles but my son took them to make his own candles. Maybe I should start saving that up again, too! I hate throwing anything away if it can be used for something else. Candles always come in handy every now and then. Thanks for your ideas!
@mikeysmom (2092)
• United States
17 Nov 08
i just throw them away. never thought to do anything else with them. i am great about recycling our glass, plastic and cans and have the most on the block each week. i would not save the empty rolls though as i have enough clutter and do not need to add anything else to it.
1 person likes this
@mentalward (14697)
• United States
17 Nov 08
You don't recycle paper?
@Feona1962 (7527)
• United States
17 Nov 08
I take mine to the preschool and they make things out of them... same thing with egg crates....
1 person likes this
@mentalward (14697)
• United States
17 Nov 08
My mother used to be a kindergarten teacher before she became a social worker. She taught kindergarten for 13 years. I love helping her to grade papers or put together craft projects for her kids! I have had some great suggestions here and I'll be working on quite a lot of them but whatever is left over I'll see if our elementary school would like them. I'll also start saving egg crates! Thanks for the idea!
@ersmommy1 (12600)
• United States
16 Nov 08
My daughter uses them in her imagination games. Sometimes she plays pirate and uses them for different things. One of my friends is a teacher. I have been known to collect a few for her craft projects.
1 person likes this
@mentalward (14697)
• United States
17 Nov 08
Oh, that's cool! I've put in an order with my kids for grandchildren so maybe, one of these days... My mother was a teacher for 13 years. She taught kindergarden and I'm sure she could have used them, but that was a long time ago. I could ask as the elementary school nearby, maybe they could use some of them! Thanks for the idea!
@jamesgrub (673)
• United States
16 Nov 08
oh i never throw away toilet paper rolls or paper towel roles. we always throw them in with the mice. they love them they love to crawl through them and chew them up. of course i have mice because i have snakes but if you did not have mice you could give them to someone who did. or any kind of rodent. just a thought
1 person likes this
@mentalward (14697)
• United States
17 Nov 08
The only kind of mice we have here are the wild kind that come in when it gets cold or rainy outside! Our cat sees to it that they don't stay long. LOL I'll have to ask around but I don't think any of our neighbors have any mice or rodents of any kind. Well, yes, we do have one neighbor with rabbits, but they live outside and can chew on anything they want, including my garden! I'll ask around, though. My sons live not too far away so they might know of someone. Of course, they probably have their own toilet paper rolls and wouldn't want mine. Maybe I'll just make those concrete cylinders. Oh, I do save paper towel rolls, too. Maybe I could just make concrete cylinders of different heights! Thanks for your idea.
@ronaldinu (12445)
• Malta
20 Dec 08
I throw empty toilet paper rolls away. I used to save them for crafts but now due to hygienic reasons I was told not to do so any longer. So I just throw them in the bin. HAPPY CHRISTMAS AND A HAPPY NEW YEAR. © ronaldinu 2008
@kidjuwee (612)
• Philippines
17 Nov 08
I pretty much throw it away because I have too many thrash in my room already. But recycling it is a good idea if you can think of making a good use for it. Maybe it will be useful in making kids projects like dolls Christmas decors and stuffs like that because the material is not so durable also so I'm thinking that it's not such a good idea to keep them too.