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The kick-start bottle

Why is the kick-start bottle needed?

If your lid thermometer reads below 15°c despite adding waste on a regular basis then the composting bacteria in your HOTBIN may have become dormant. This is usually most common in one of two situations; when starting your HOTBIN during the winter or continuing use after having a holiday/break where the HOTBIN has not been fed for some time. On these occasions you may need to use the kick-start bottle to create a heat boost (like a hot water bottle) for the bacteria which will wake them up and encourage them to once again start digesting waste.

How to use the kick-start bottle

  1. Carefully fill bottle with boiling water and replace the lid tightly.
  2. Make a space in the top layer of waste and situate the bottle inside the HOTBIN covering with fresh and easy to digest waste.
  3. Close the lid and leave for 24 hours without opening.
  4. Check lid thermometer is above 15°c after 24 hours, if not repeat process once more

As a result you should see an increase in temperature which should be sustained as long as waste is added on a regular basis with shredded paper/card and bulking agent.

What if the temperature is over 15°c?

If the lid thermometer reads over 15°c then the bacteria will already be active so using the kick-start bottle will have very little effect. In this instance we would recommend adding fresh waste to the HOTBIN on a regular basis to reach and maintain hot composting temperatures.

Can hot water just be added directly into the bin?

Do not pour boiling water directly into the heap – the water will simply cool leaving no energy to evaporate the extra water and the contents in an overly wet state.

Warning: Once full, bottle is extremely hot, wear gloves and handle with care. The kick start bottle supplied with the HOTBIN is manufactured from a high density polyethylene (HDPE). This material has been chosen to withstand the boiling temperatures from water poured inside it and is not the same as fizzy drink bottles (PET) or milk bottles (LDPE).

DO NOT substitute with a bottle that is not HDPE which will likely warp or potentially break causing injury to the user.