The ABCs of Safe and Efficient Dumpster Loading

We learn a lot of things in school – basic math, the state capitals, and how to write. Unlike our ABCs, nobody teaches us how to load dumpsters in kindergarten. However, knowing how to safely and efficiently load a dumpster will likely come in handy at some point in your life. Really, it’s simpler than the alphabet; all you need is the first six letters. Let’s take a look.

A is for Appropriate Dumpster Size

Choosing your dumpster size is the first step to a quick and safe loading process. The ideal size will hold all of your trash within the confines of the dumpster, allowing you to avoid any additional costs for overfilling your dumpster or renting one larger than you need. If you get your rental dumpsters from a waste disposal company like Atlas Disposal, you’ll have four main options:

  1. 10-Yard Dumpster: Perfect for small-scale home renovations, garage cleanouts, and small backyard projects.
  2. 20-Yard Dumpster: Good for kitchen or bathroom renovation projects, basement cleanouts, and backyard landscaping projects.
  3. 30-Yard Dumpster: Ideal for full house renovation projects, commercial cleanouts, and construction projects.
  4. 40-Yard Dumpster: Meant for large construction or demolition projects, multi-family apartment cleanouts, and extensive building renovations.

The best way to make a wise decision about dumpster size is to contact a waste disposal company and explain your situation to them. They can help you determine the best size for you.

B is for Balancing the Load

Balancing the load in your dumpster might sound complicated. Don’t be put off. It doesn’t have to be perfectly symmetrical. Think of it like packing a backpack. You don’t have to stress too much about what goes where exactly, but you do want to make sure you wear the backpack on both shoulders rather than just on one side of your body. The same applies to safe dumpster loading. Here’s how to balance the load in your dumpster:

  • Distribute heavy items relatively evenly. Smaller and lighter junk matters less.
  • Put the bulky items in first and lighter items on top to create a stable base.
  • If it’s practical, try to load the dumpster from both sides so that you don’t end up with everything on the closer, more convenient side.

C is for Categorize the Trash

Categorizing your trash is important to ensure you’re disposing of it in the correct way and avoiding any potential harm to the environment. Just like doing laundry – you don’t want to wash your whites with your darks. Here are the basics on how to categorize your trash:

  • Separate recyclable items from non-recyclable items
  • Check with the waste management facility about what things are not allowed in the dumpster
  • Sort hazardous waste items like chemicals, batteries, and electronics separately
  • Consider donating items that are still in good condition to second-hand stores and charity organizations

D is for Dress for Success

Wearing the appropriate clothing and gear will make loading your dumpster safer and, oftentimes, faster. It’s a lot easier to get amongst those piles of brambles when you have leather gloves on. Solid shoes are also helpful for lifting items into the dumpster. Hand and foot injuries are probably the most common incidents from dumpster loading projects.

  • Wear sturdy closed-toe shoes or boots with good traction
  • Avoid loose clothing or jewelry that may get caught in the dumpster or machinery
  • Wear gloves to protect your hands from sharp objects or hazardous materials
  • Consider wearing a dust mask if you’re disposing of dusty or moldy items

E is for Efficiency

Have you ever seen the object lesson where the teacher fills a glass jar with rocks, pebbles, and sand? When they put the sand and pebbles in first, the rocks don’t all fit. But when they put the rocks in first and then the pebbles and then the sand, everything suddenly fits into the jar. Magic.

You can use the same principle to get the most out of your dumpster rental. Put in the heavy and large items first, like furniture, large logs, desks, and bed frames. Then smaller things can fit between the cracks. This will help the dumpster fit more junk and is safer than placing bulky items on top. Other efficiency tips include:

  • Break down boxes and larger items into smaller pieces first
  • Create an assembly line from the garbage to the dumpster
  • Turn it into a social event. Invite friends to come and help
  • Play music to raise energy levels
  • Reward yourself with a treat or some relaxation time afterward

F is for Fill Level

Almost all dumpsters for rent will have a clear fill level marked. Take this line seriously, or else you risk paying an additional fee or having to unload junk from the dumpster. The fill line is often 10 cm below the rim for a reason. Filled above the line, the dumpster may be too heavy to transport away legally, and it risks spilling while on the move.

F is also for “Finally, it’s finished!”

Loading a dumpster isn’t the leisure activity of choice for the majority of the population. Hopefully, these tips will make the process easier and less intimidating than you originally imagined. Renting a dumpster is the easiest and best way to clean up after a big project, handle large waste flows from apartment complexes and get unneeded junk out of your life.