Our Complete Guide To Dumpsters

It may feel intimidating if you’re renting a dumpster for the first time but the process is actually very simple.

Generally, you phone a dumpster rental company, choose the size of dumpster you want, agree the terms of rental and make the payment.

Your dumpster rental contractor will drop your container off at your house or chosen destination and pick it up once you’re finished disposing of your trash.

However, like with most services, it pays to be well informed.


–> Here’s what you need to know about Dumpsters:



     1. Residential Dumpster Sizes


Dumpsters (also known as roll off containers) come in a variety of common sizes that includes 10 yards, 15 yards, 20 yards, 30 yards and 40 yards.

There is a smaller size (5 yards) available but this is less common because it’s cost prohibitive compared to the next sizes up, i.e. the 10 yards and 15 yards.


Residential Dumpster


Dumpsters are often called roll offs because the bottom of the container has feet (or rollers).

The container is rolled off the delivery truck using a hook and pulley.

The feet (rollers) are on wooden planks to protect your drive.

One side of the container has swinging doors and this makes it easier to load your waste, especially heavy or bulky items.

If your dumpster is small, you can also throw your waste in from the top.

After you’re finished with the dumpster, your contractor will be come and pick the container up using the same hook and pulley system.


      2. Why You Might Need A Dumpster


You don’t need to wait for a large job like a house clean out or a remodel to use a dumpster.

There are other reasons why you may want to consider renting a dumpster:

–          Decluttering a house (e.g. before a move)

–          Removing yard waste

–          Replacing your roof or windows

–          Repair projects

–          Clean out of the garage, attic or basement

–          New construction works


  3. Commercial Dumpsters


These are typically smaller in size than a residential or construction dumpster.

They range from 2 yards to 8 yards in size. 


Commercial Dumpster


Commercial dumpsters are also referred to as Trash Dumpsters.

They can be found behind gas stations, blocks of flats, in the park and outside shops and restaurants.

These types of containers are permanently rented by businesses and regularly collected, e.g. on a weekly basis.

Commercial dumpsters also have lids on top, to protect them from the weather and keep out smells from the trash.

The lid also helps to reduce pests like flies and rodents.



  1. Construction Dumpsters


Construction Dumpster


A construction dumpster is another version of a residential dumpster.

They are also open top, i.e. there is no lid.

Construction dumpsters are usually 10 yard to 40 yard in size.

They are useful for removal of construction/demolition debris or for the removal of household junk e.g. cleaning out a garage, attic or basement.


5.       How To Negotiate The Best Dumpster Price.


Size: Needless to say, the larger the container, the higher the cost will be to rent a dumpster.

You should be aware that dumpster rental quotes are high because they already include landfill costs.

Landfill accounts for the majority of the cost in your quote. The more waste material you have, the higher your cost will be.

However, trying to go for a lower size is not always cost effective.

If you have more waste than you can fit into a 10 yard container or you’re in doubt, always choose the next size up, e.g. a 20 yard container.

It is cheaper to rent 1 x 20 yard, rather than 2 x 10 yard containers. 

If you still have space left in the larger size container, consider sharing costs with a neighbour. It’ll work out as a win-win for both of you.


Recycling: Consider using recycling facilities if it is practical.

This will be a cheaper option than throwing all of your waste in the dumpster because disposal fees for recycling are much lower.


Clean Loading: If you only have a single type of material to get rid of, e.g. roofing shingles, drywall or concrete, speak to your contractor to see if you can clean load the container.

Single materials are sent to a recycling facility and because the disposal fees are lower you may be able to save on costs.


Weight Allowance: Make sure you stay within your limits.

Going over your allowance will incur extra costs with overage fees. Construction debris is always heavier than household waste.

If in doubt, speak to your contractor about getting a larger size container.


Speak To Multiple Contractors: Just like with any service, it’s always sensible to get quotes from different contractors.

This will give you an idea of what the market rate is in your area.

Be clear about your rental length (this can vary from 1-3 weeks between contractors), the size that you require and the material that you’re going to dispose of when you speak to the contractors.


Understand The Rental Terms: Find out what materials are allowed and what isn’t allowed in the dumpster.

Check if the contractor will automatically pick up your dumpster at the end of your rental period or whether you’ll need to call them.


Scheduling The Delivery: Dumpster rental companies are busier in the summer, as this is peak time for construction work and also when people have clear outs, so make sure that you schedule your delivery in advance.

When your delivery arrives, the contractor will usually place wooden planks underneath the dumpster feet to help protect your drive.


Choose An Accessible Location: Make sure that your dumpster is placed in an easy to access place.

This will save you problems with the pick up after it’s loaded. For example, you wouldn’t want to park your car in front of the dumpster.

Parking your vehicle close to the dumpster is a risk with debris and dust.

If your vehicle is obstructing the dumpster, this will make it difficult for the pick up truck to remove the container.

In likelihood, the driver will refuse to pick up the dumpster but still charge you for the trip.

If your driver experiences any delays in the pick up then you may also get charged because you’ll be stopping the driver from moving on to their next job.




How To Choose The Correct Size Of Dumpster

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