Guitar String Recycling

Restring, Retune, Recycle

Did you know that musical instrument strings are not recycled through municipal recycling programs? That means that strings cannot be put in the recycling bin at the curb. As a result, it is estimated that more than 1.5 million lbs. of instrument string metal could be put into landfills every year.

Fortunately, TerraCycle and D’Addario have partnered to create a free recycling program for instrument strings and clippings called Playback. Calico Guitarworks is proud to participate in this great initiative.


D’Addario’s Playback string recycling program is powered by TERRACYCLE, an international upcycling and recycling company that repurposes waste into new, innovative materials and products. Once collected, the metal and nylon strings are separated by type and the metal is melted down and smelted into new metal alloys. The nylon is recycled into industrial plastic applications.

The next time you change strings, take a minute to reflect on the tremendous cumulative effect that lots of small steps in the right direction can have for our society and our planet.

Recycle Your Used Strings At Our Shop

In addition to recycling the strings that are removed from any instrument that we service in house, Calico Guitarworks is also a public drop-off center for this great program.

With minimal effort, you can help reduce waste. To recycle your strings, simply coil your used strings after replacement and set them aside. Whenever you are ready, perhaps the next time you book an appointment for service, bring them by the shop to be collected for recycling. It’s as simple as that! 

All brands and types of strings are accepted: electric, acoustic, nylon, bass, violin, mandolin, ukulele… yes, even banjo strings! 

Picture of Erik Salomon - Calico Guitarworks Owner / Head Technician
Erik Salomon - Calico Guitarworks Owner / Head Technician

Tech Talk articles are part of an ongoing effort to provide clear and detailed answers to common questions about guitar maintenance, modifications, and repairs.
While not intended as a step-by-step guide to servicing your own instrument, we hope that you will find value in the information provided.

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About Calico Guitarworks

Calico Guitarworks is the area’s premier destination for fretted musical instrument care and maintenance. Owned and managed by Erik Salomon, the shop is dedicated to providing quick, honest and reliable service. The staff at Calico Guitarworks has a combined 25+ years of professional guitar repair experience. Sharing the knowledge that we accumulate in this focused pursuit is at the core of what we do. Learn more About Calico Guitarworks, explore our Frequently Asked Questions, or Contact us with a specific request.

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