Showing results for 
Show  only  | Search instead for 
Did you mean: 
Welcome REI Co-op Members! We're glad you're here. If you can't access the Co-op Members section of the community, click here for instructions on how to join the section that's just for you.

Recycling Isobutane-Propane fuel canisters

I'm looking at buying a new backpacking stove - after getting 25+ years of use out of my MSR stove. Are the Isobutane-Propane fuel canisters that some MSR stoves use now recyclable? I'm in Minnesota if it makes a difference.

14 Replies

@DougSC I'm not an employee, but our local recycling service (Twisp, WA) only requests that you poke holes in the canister and recycle it with mixed metals. When they see the holes, they know there is no danger of remaining fuel under pressure.

@TomIrvine That is my understanding as well.  REI will graciously relinquish ownership of a little gadget designed to do just this to you for an appropriate sum.....

@hikermor Yes, but the manly way to do it is with an ice-axe. 😉 I suppose a screwdriver would also work.

Yes of course! An ice axe would definitely be the manly method!

REI Member Since 1979 

REI Member Since 1979

@DougSC Thanks for reaching out!

There isn't much we can add to the advice you've gotten here other than to confirm that the IsoPro canisters are recyclable once you puncture them to make sure all the gas is emptied. You'll want to check with your local recycling plant to confirm they will accept them before recycling. 

Hope this helps!

At REI, we believe time outside is fundamental to a life well lived.

You'll want to make sure all the gas is out of them and THEN puncture the can.  Once you puncture the can the gas will escape so it's too late to "make sure". 

You should not puncture a can that obviously has fuel in it because you can create a projectile or worse an uncontrollable incendiary device should a stray spark light the escaping gas.

I also squash my punctured empties to make their emptiness obvious.

Hi @OldGuyot how do you squash them? Vice?

REI Member Since 1979

With a hammer.   I don't think my vice is big enough.  I generally use a nail to puncture the can but a hammer on a nail can cause a spark so the can MUST be empty.   For puncturing the can the devices are probably safer for most people.

Generally I try to use partials up...and use my stove to burn off any residual gas.