cardboard bale ties

Factors to Consider When Choosing Bale Wire

Bale wire plays a crucial role in industrial recycling.

By helping to securely bind recycled materials into compact bales, bale wire (also known as baling wire) makes it possible to transport and store bales. It’s important to note, however, that not all wire is manufactured equally. Various gauges, lengths, and treatments allow for customization based on the materials being baled, their weight, and the conditions they will be stored in.

Without bale wire, it would be difficult to handle and process the vast amounts of materials that are recycled every day. In this blog, we discuss the different types of bale wire and how to choose the right one for your industrial recycling process.

Recycling Equipment

Various brands of recycling equipment offer recommendations on the best bale wire for their machinery. Some vertical, horizontal, and auto-tie balers may have specific requirements for bale wire that works best for their applications. Follow the manufacturer’s recommendations or check with our experts before you buy.

Recycled Material Type

The material(s) in the bales should be one of the first factors to consider when choosing bale wire for your industrial recycling process.

The type of bale wire you choose should be compatible with the type of material that you are recycling. For example, plastic bales require a different gauge of bale wire than paper bales. Bales containing plastic tend to have more expansive pressure and may require lower gauge bale wire than paper or cardboard.

Bale Weight and Size

Bale weight and size are also critical factors to consider when selecting a bale wire for your industrial recycling process.

The gauge of the bale wire should be able to withstand the weight and pressure of the bales. If the bale wire is too thin, it may break, and if it’s too thick, it may be difficult to properly tie by hand. It’s important to consider the weight and size of your bales to choose the appropriate bale wire for your bales.


The gauge or thickness of baling wire determines the strength and durability of the wire.

Depending on the weight and size of the materials being baled, a specific gauge will be required to ensure that the wire is strong enough to hold the bale securely. Generally, the lower the gauge number, the thicker the wire. For material with high expansion force such as plastic bottles, a lower gauge of 10-11 may be appropriate. For material such as cardboard, a higher 11-13 gauge may be sufficient. Using the appropriate wire gauge is essential to avoid wire breakage and possible employee injuries.

Wire Treatments

Wire treatments are used to prevent rust and corrosion, improve chemical resistance, and reduce friction, ensuring that the wire can be effectively and efficiently used.

Treatments, like galvanization or black annealing, provide extra protection against rust and corrosion. This is particularly important when baling in wet conditions or when the bales will be stored outside. Bale wire treatments can also make it easier to handle, as it can increase wire flexibility. Overall, the treatment of baling wire can significantly improve its durability, safety and effectiveness.

Tensile Strength

Tensile strength refers to the maximum load that the bale wire can bear before breaking. High tensile strength wire is needed for baling denser and heavier materials. The tensile strength of bale wire is measured in pounds per square inch (PSI). The right tensile strength should be chosen to ensure that the wire can withstand the pressure and weight of the baled materials.

Spool Size

The spool size of bale wire varies from manufacturer to manufacturer. The length of the spool depends on the frequency of use, the size of the material being baled, and the type of baler machine being used. Large spools are suitable for high-volume baling operations, while smaller spools are ideal for low-volume baling applications. Storage space availability and the frequency of wire changeovers should also be considered when choosing the right spool size.

Why Choose Quincy Recycle as Your Baling Wire Supplier?

Quincy Recycle is a full-service recycling company offering everything your business could need for waste management in one place.

We partner with industry-leading brands to offer recycling equipment, accessories, and services that will streamline your waste management plans. From start to finish, our team will audit your waste stream and provide the resources you need to successfully manage it. We’ll even pick up and haul away recycled waste and mixed commodity trailers when you’re done!

In addition, our American-made bale wire options are expertly recommended to maximize the production and effectiveness of your baling systems. No matter the material, size, or production output of your recycled bales, Quincy Recycle has what you need to securely bind and transport waste. We carry single-loop bale ties, box wire, and stump wire to fit a variety of needs and budgets.

Contact us today for a FREE consultation on industrial bale wire.