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Choosing the Right Dumpster


Ultimate Bin Rental Guide  >  Choosing the Right Dumpster

Milos Kazic


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Typical sizes for your project type
How to measure size in cubic yards
Can the bin fit on your property?
One type of trash? Save with specialty dumpsters
Is your waste heavy? Watch out for weight limits
What does a cubic yard of waste look like?

Compare And Book Dumpster Rentals Near You

visual representation of roll off dumpster service comparison results on dumpstore's bin rental search engine

What kind of dumpster does your project need?

So you've decided you want to rent a dumpster, and you open up our one and only dumpster rental search engine and look for the best value rental in your city...
...but what the heck is a cubic yard? 2 tons included? How am I supposed to know how much my garbage weighs?? 🤷

Well, you're in luck - below you'll find guidance on what size we recommend for your project type, tips on how to calculate the volume and weight of your waste, comparisons to help you get a feel for how big these sizes are, and some extra things to look out for.





How to measure your waste in cubic yards

jar of candies representing the difficulty in guessing how big of a dumpster rental one needs for their waste

12? 1754? I was never any good at guessing.


Is your waste heavy? Watch out for weight limits

If you're disposing of heavy waste (think concrete, dirt, shingles, etc.) you have to make sure you don't go over the weight limit of the bin. Most jurisdictions have weight limits for roads, so if the bin is too heavy, the hauler can't haul.

Generally, you should be looking at the smaller sizes (like 10-20 cubic yards), which are too small to get too heavy in the first place (but also cheaper than partially filling a big bin up to the weight limit.

Keep in mind that many places have specialty roll-off bins for things like concrete if your waste isn't mixed with other things. These are often cheaper so keep an eye out!

Can the bin fit on your property?

Maybe you've figured out how much space you need for your trash, but make sure the dumpster you're booking can actually fit somewhere on your property, and that the truck can drop it off and pick it up!

Each product will show the dimensions of the bin as so:

One type of trash? Save with specialty dumpsters

Sometimes haulers will offer a cheaper price if you are only disposing of a certain type of waste and nothing else. This is often the case for materials such as:

  • Concrete

  • Clean fill (dirt with no contaminants)

  • Sod

  • Shingles

  • Metal

  • Drywall

  • etc...

Right now, dumpstore is in the middle of upgrading - soon you'll be able to search for these specialty dumpsters and book them online using our one-of-a-kind dumpster search engine.

What does a cubic yard of waste look like?

Sometimes you can't really measure the size of your waste. When that's the case, sometimes it's helpful to visualize what these dumpster sizes look like by comparing to something we have a better idea of.

If you can measure the dimensions of your waste (even if it's a rough measurement) then you can estimate how much volume it takes up in cubic yards. 

Let's get right to it - tell us what you're doing and we'll give you our best opinion on what you might need. If you're not sure, you can read the rest of the article and really nail it down.

Careful though, the truck will need plenty of space in front of this area and also some space above, for it to get lifted up on the bed! If the hauler can't drop off or pick it up, you'll be charged! 😱

If you're booking one of those newfangled dumpster bags, make sure there is room overhead for the crane arm to swing through and grab it.






How long will you need the dumpster?

Another thing to keep in mind is that different haulers will include a different amount of days in their standard rental periods - 2, 7, 10, and 14 days are all common offerings.

A hauler will let you hold on to the bin for longer but will have an extension charge for each extra day you use the bin without calling for a pickup.

Both the rental period and the extension fees are shown on the product listing on our search engine and checkout pages like so:

10 days included

$10 per extra day

Choose a project/waste type above!

We'll tell you what size/type of dumpster would typically work for your project.

Enter your measurements

10 cubic yards

12 refrigerators

22 washing machines

55 wheelbarrow loads

is roughly the same size as...



How long will you need the dumpster?
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