Filament Spool Recycling Program

The 3D Universe Terrafilum Spool Recycling Program marks a significant step towards sustainable 3D printing. By returning your used filament spools, you contribute to a greener future, preventing them from adding to the increasing plastic waste in landfills.

Why is recycling filament spools so important? Consider this: the U.S. Department of Energy's National Renewal Energy Laboratory reported that there are approximately 44 million pounds of plastic waste in the U.S. According to 2019 statistics, of the plastic waste that was generated in the U.S. that year, about 5 percent was recycled while 86% was deposited in our landfills, and the remainder was incinerated.

Participating in the Spool Recycling Program is easy and impactful. You can send us your empty spools from any brand of 3D printing filament. Terrafilum will refurbish these spools, filling them with high-quality filament for reuse. This process not only reduces waste but also promotes the use of sustainable materials in the 3D printing community.

Remember, sustainability in 3D printing starts with small actions that lead to significant changes. Join the Filament Spool Recycling Program today and be part of a more sustainable tomorrow.

How Does the Spool Recycling Program Work?

What do you do with your empty filament spools?

Terrafilum has a few different options for you to choose from with its spool recycling program!

Option 1

Purchase 3D Universe Terrafilum and Auto Enroll

If you are a current customer, please save your shipping box

• Place your empty spools back in the box
• Notify Terrafilum when you are done
• Email Terrafilum when you have more than 10 spools
• Terrafilum will send you a return shipping label.

Option 2

Send in Your Empty Spools from Other Brands
If you have spools from other brands, you are welcome to send those in too!

If you have 15 or more spools
• Place your empty spools in a box
• Get box dimensions and weight
• Please contact them via email at or by phone at 815-526-3248 and they will help arrange a shipment to get them to Terrafilum®.

If you have less than 15 spools
• Place your empty spools in a box
• Get box dimensions and weight
• Ship directly to Terrafilum

Send your empty spools to:

3D Universe Terrafilum Spool Recycling Program:
740 Industrial Drive.
Suite D
Cary, IL 60013

What Happens Once You Send in Your Spools for the Spool Recycling Program?

So what happens now?

We asked Chris Jackson at Terrafilum to detail the filament spool recycling process. He explained the steps, from receiving the shipped packages to how Terrafilum goes on to reuse the spools.

Chris shares, “We receive materials from all over the country in a variety of packaging. We can even accept in bulk when palletized! Once we receive the empty spools, we separate them all by size and type.“

“We then take the time to sort the spools and stage them for an initial inspection and surface cleaning. We remove labels and then sanitize the spools with an industrial cleaner,” shares Chris.

“We follow that by packaging the empty spools by type and size and store them for re-use,” explains Chris. “When we produce materials, we try to make each batch utilize the same type of spool during production,” he adds.

“We produce the filament onto the spools and send it out for re-use,” Chris shares. “As long as we keep the chain moving, the spools can be used again and again!“


Hold a Community Spool Recycling Drive

Want to make sustainability a bigger part of your 3D printing process? Consider holding a community spool drive at your school, business, maker space, or library by setting up a drop box for a few weeks! Invite everyone with empty spools to swing by and bring their collection in to donate and ship back to Terrafilum so the spools can be reused to minimize waste.

Previously, MakerForce and Portland 3D Printer Lab (PDX3DP), a 2000+ members group that communicates across Meetup, Facebook, and the Discord communities as well as in person, held the first spool drive for the Terrafilum filament spool recycling program. In 4 hours they collected nearly 500 empty spools to send in, with one member bringing in 200 spools all on his own. A couple of people brought their children along and taught them about circular economy and recycling.

They scavenged a pallet and packed up the 500 spools and then shipped them off to Terrafilum to be reused and kept from ending up in a landfill!

You can read more about this spool drive here on our blog here and learn more about these incredible makers and how they are making a difference in the world.

Purchase Environmentally Friendly Filaments from 3D Universe

We are thrilled to announce our partnership with Terrafilum Engineered Filaments, a company committed to sustainability in 3D printing. Terrafilum's mission aligns perfectly with ours: to offer 3D printer users the finest, eco-friendly filament solutions. Their dedication to quality and environmental responsibility is unmatched, and together, we have achieved remarkable success in meeting and exceeding the 3D printing needs of our customers.

Our collaboration with Terrafilum reflects our shared values of innovation, quality, and sustainability. For those who prioritize environmental responsibility in their 3D printing projects, we highly recommend exploring our range of 3D Universe Terrafilum materials. These filaments are not just a testament to superior quality but also represent our commitment to eco-friendly 3D printing practices and are made right here in America!

If you are also interested in supporting a brand of filaments that focuses on environmentally friendly 3D printing materials, please check out our 3D Universe Terrafilum materials in the link below!

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