Gazebos, pergolas, pavilions, and arbors - whatever you choose to call them - they're great when they're kept up. But they do get old and deteriorate.
And when they're made of lumber and other wood products, dismantling them and disposing of all the waste and debris can be a challenge for any homeowner.
Garden Gazebos: Out with the Old and In with the New
Have you ever wondered why those quaint structures are called a "gazebo"?
According to the folks at the Encyclopædia Britannica,
"The name is an 18th-century joke word combining “gaze” with the Latin suffix ebo, meaning “I shall.” As a structured form, it is as old as garden history: it is the “viewing pavilion” of the Chinese or the summerhouse on the summit of a garden mount referred to by the 17th-century philosopher Francis Bacon."
And since we're on the topic, the same source defines a pergola as,
"A garden walk or terrace, roofed with an open framework over which plants are trained. Its purpose is to provide a foundation on which climbing plants can be seen to advantage and to give shade. It was known in ancient Egypt and was a common feature of early Renaissance gardens in Italy and subsequently throughout Europe."
Regardless of what you call your wooden backyard structure, the sad fact is that they don't last forever. And the less maintenance, upkeep, and TLC we lavish on these backyard beauties, the less likely they are to charm us beyond five or so years.
How long can you expect a quality, wooden gazebo to last?
One manufacturer has offered the following answer to that question,
"If you care for your wooden gazebo properly, it will last a long time. You can expect 10-15 years of enjoyment if basic maintenance is performed on it every year. A good quality wooden gazebo is constructed from cedar or redwood, both materials being naturally resistant to rot and bugs. How often you’ll have to perform basic maintenance on your wooden gazebo depends on how much it is exposed to the rain or the sun. "
The bottom line is that at some point you will need to dispose of it and, hopefully, replace it with one that is bigger and better.
Old Gazebo Removal: Demolition or Deconstruction?
As one DIY website states, gazebo demolition can be performed by anyone with light to moderate construction experience, and it can usually be accomplished in a single afternoon.
So, grab a sledgehammer and a crowbar and let the demo begin!
However, if you are inclined to salvage as much of the wood and lumber as possible, taking the approach of deconstruction will be better though a bit more time consuming.
The process is essentially just a few steps as follows:
Step 1: Clear out all loose items
Step 2: Remove the gazebo trim
Step 3: Take the roof off
Step 4: Tear down the walls
Step 5: Dismantle the base
Step 6: Dispose of the debris
While that sounds easy enough, not everyone is going to be quite prepared to take on the task. And that last step can be far more difficult for some of us than the actual dismantling process.
Without a suitable vehicle and the ability to haul and load all the pieces and debris, disposing of it all is a challenge. And if the wood was painted, stained, or varnished then disposal can be far more problematic.
That's because these types of wood treatment renders the lumber unsuitable for most recycling processes and uses. Also, even untreated wood needs to be free of hardware like nails and screws.
When it comes to disposing of untreated lumber and wood waste from your old gazebo or pergola - or even your backyard deck or fences, these materials can almost always be recycled. And the good news is that old, clean wood has a number of uses when recycled.
For example, many types of old wood waste can be chipped and used to create compost or mulch. It can also be turned into chipboard and particle board lumber products.
Disposing of Old Lumber and Waste Wood Materials
Despite all the household garbage and industrial waste that makes up our municipal solid waste (MSW) stream, wood waste is actually one of the largest categories of solid waste we generate.
In fact, data from the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) for 2018, showed that wood made up 18.1 million tons of solid waste, or 6.2 percent of total generated that year. Part of the problem we have with wood waste, however, is that 12.2 million tons of wood ended up in our nation's landfills.
Unfortunately, in addition to more than 12 million of the over 18 million tons of wood waste was dumped into landfills, just over three million tons were recycled.
That may sound like a lot of old wood, but it means that more than 80 percent of all the wood waste, old lumber scraps, and the different types of junk made from painted or varnished wood simply took up our landfill space that is rapidly diminishing.
Part of the problem is that most wood waste is painted, or varnished, or chemically treated. And, as we noted earlier, these waste wood materials cannot be used for recycling. In fact, most of them cannot be used for much of anything other than fuel for energy generation plants.
Fortunately for homeowners, simply by using a green junk removal company like Junk King you can know that as much of your wood debris as possible will be processed in an eco-friendly manner.
Not only that, we can often take care of the dismantling process for you so that you need only stand by and point while we take care of the rest.
And that means all the heavy lifting, too!
Your Resource for Getting Rid of Old Wood
Depending on what state you live in, Junk King can take all your treated or painted wood for you. In some instances, there may be an additional fee for disposal because of state regulations.
Pressure-treated wood can be categorized as a hazardous waste in some places such as in the state of California. In that state, for example, only certified carriers can transport those materials.
The EPA defines “hazardous waste” as,
“Waste with properties that make it dangerous or capable of having a harmful effect on human health or the environment.”
The problem is that hazardous waste materials are banned from landfills and they cannot be picked up by your trash company or by most commercial junk removal companies. Instead, you need to find a way to have them taken to special facilities where they can be stored, treated, and disposed of safely.
Junk King provides an efficient, safe and eco-friendly yard waste removal service so you don’t need to worry about the pick up or disposal of your wood debris. In fact, our expert debris removal team will break down and haul off any type of waste you have.
Ready to get rid of your old wood waste and debris? It’s as simple as 1, 2, 3.
Our professional and insured junk removal team will call 15 to 30 minutes before we arrive on site and we’ll give you a free estimate based on how much room your junk takes up in our truck. You simply point and we'll haul your junk and debris into our big, red truck and do it all with no hidden fees.
You can make an appointment by booking online above or by calling 1.888.888.JUNK (5865).