A portable dumpster covers a lot of ground in its lifespan. These bins go from one house or business to the next, serving the needs of countless different customers over the span of months or years. Sometimes, they are meant for renovations or roofing projects, serving as receptacles for unneeded building debris.
Other times, they are driving spring cleaning projects or relocation preparations, holding everything that homeowners or businesses owners no longer want or need.
But what does a day in the life of a portable dumpster look like? From dawn to dusk, we thought we’d chart the entire journey.
Morning: The Rental
The day begins for a portable dumpster with a rental. A customer picks out the dumpster for their purposes—sometimes from multiple dumpster sizes or variations—and a delivery driver drops it off at the preferred location. Sometimes, this location is outside of an office building. Usually, it’s in the driveway of a residential home.
Ideally, the dumpster will be driveway-friendly—small enough to fit on the pavement, and lightweight enough not to do damage to your concrete or asphalt. One drawback of larger dumpster rentals is that they just don’t fit snugly in a driveway. They might hang off the pavement into the lawn or garden or take up so much space that homeowners need to leave them out by the road. The closer you can get the dumpster to your home, the easier it will be to load.
The Next Few Days: The Cleanout
Once the dumpster arrives at the customer’s home or business, it usually stays there for a few days. All dumpster rental companies offer a few different tiers of pricing, based on how long you wish to keep the dumpster. Only very rarely will a dumpster rental company pick up the dumpster on the same day as the drop-off. Customers usually appreciate having longer to fill up the bin with junk, which is why most companies offer three, five, and seven-day pricing.
Depending on which option you choose, the dumpster’s next few days are dominated by the cleanout. As customers go about their cleanout or building projects, the dumpster will gradually accumulate refuse. What that refuse is will depend on the client. It might be roofing shingles, discarded wood, or chunks of drywall debris. It might be rusty tools, broken lawn furniture, and old childhood toys pulled from the garage. It might be unwanted furniture, outdated appliances, or old electronics from the main house. The dumpster’s job is to fit and hold whatever junk the customer at hand might need to ditch.
When renting a dumpster, don’t take it as a given that you will be allowed to deposit anything you want in the bin. Some dumpster rental companies are very particular about what you can and cannot throw away. Look for a dumpster rental company that will accept any type of trash, or just about. There will always be a few restrictions. You won’t be able to throw away old cans of oil-based paint, for example. However, finding a company that lets you deposit construction debris, furniture, books, electronics, appliances, toys, and old yard tools all in the same bin will ensure the easiest cleanout process.
The Morning or Afternoon on the Third/Fifth/Seventh Day: The Pickup
Eventually, the time on your dumpster rental clock will run down to zero. By that point, hopefully, you’ve filled up your bin—or at least used as much space as you need to use. Based on the length of your rental, you should have arranged a pickup time at the outset of your dumpster rental. A good dumpster rental company will keep to that schedule and arrive at your home or business at the agreed time. Finding a dumpster rental business with a reputation for being on time is essential because you don’t want to be waiting around all day waiting for a pickup. If you schedule your pick up at 10 a.m. on the third day, or 2:30 p.m. on the seventh day, you want to know that those times are going to be honored.
Anyway, a driver will eventually arrive to load your (full) dumpster onto a truck and haul it away. That’s the end of the journey, right? Well maybe for you, but not for the dumpster! Your bin still has a few more stops before it gets to close out its multi-day work schedule.
The End of the Work Day: Trash Delivery and Sorting
Depending on where you rent your dumpster, the next step on your bin’s “day in the life” story may vary. In some cases, the driver who picks up your dumpster will drive it directly to the nearest landfill, to dump the trash. The bin will then be transported back to the dumpster rental company’s warehouse, to rest for a night or two before going back out into circulation.
If you make sure to rent from a green dumpster rental service, though, the next step is delivery to a trash sorting center. The bin goes to a facility where workers are standing by to sort through the junk and pull out items that can be reused, recycled, or repurposed. The reason many junk removal companies don’t allow items such as TVs or refrigerators is that throwing them away is not particularly safe. Recycling is important for items such as electronic waste, appliances, and some furniture. Dumpster rental companies will sometimes ban these items, just because they don’t want to deal with figuring out the recycling process.
However, the fact of the matter is that many of the items people throw away in dumpsters are not actually trash. A DVD player that someone doesn’t want anymore might still be fully functional. A set of children’s toys might not be something that a family with grown kid’s needs but might be ideal for a family with young kids. All told, more than half of what ends up in junk removal bins can be recycled or donated. The junk sorting process is meant to find these items and determine where they should go.
Eventually, the sorted junk items move on to their respective destinations. Some of the junk in the bin does end up in the landfill, unusable for any other purpose. Other items get donated to local charities, sent to local recycling plants, or otherwise handled in a green fashion.
As for your dumpster, its shift is over. In a day or two, it will go back on the truck and go to another home or business for another cleanout or renovation. From there, it’s “rinse and repeat” as far as the specific steps of the process goes.
Renting a Portable Dumpster for Your Cleanout Project
The idea of portable dumpsters it that they are extremely convenient. In the above “day in the life” scenario, you should note how few steps put any responsibility on the shoulders of the of the customer. Sure, the customer must order a rental dumpster, schedule drop-off and pickup times, and fill the bin with junk. However, as for actually dropping off and picking up the dumpster, sorting through junk, pulling out recyclable items, and figuring out what to do with items such as electronics or appliances, most of the responsibility falls to the dumpster rental company.
Consider these factors as you shop around for different dumpster rental companies. Ideally, you will find a rental provider that offers a similar “day in the life” for its dumpsters. The more similar your portable dumpster agreement is to the above narrative; the easier things will be for you.
For more information on your options, contact us and let a member of our team answer your questions.