Renting a Dumpster for Cleaning Up Home Renovation Debris

Nov 6, 2023 | Dumpsters

Whether you’re installing new kitchen cabinets and appliances or re-doing your bathroom, debris is simply part of the home renovation process. According to a study conducted by Harvard University, Americans spent approximately $472 billion on home renovations in 2022. 

One of the easiest ways to get rid of unsightly and possibly dangerous renovation debris is to rent a dumpster.

Check out these tips about renting a dumpster to help you find the appropriate solution to your renovation cleanup needs.

Start with a Cleanup Prep Plan

Before you begin the dumpster drill-down, it’s a good idea to plan your cleanup in advance. Make sure you have the right protective gear including masks, gloves, and eye protection.

Sweep up dust and debris and try to put as much as you can in one corner or area so that cleanup is easier later. You can also sweep and dump debris into trash bags, making the cleanup process a lot simpler.

It’s also a good idea to snag a quality all-purpose cleaner and some cleaning supplies. This way, you can wipe up dust and messes as you go so your new renovation looks spotless once it’s complete.

Determine How Much Renovation Debris You’ll Have

Dumpster prices vary based on the size and how often you need them emptied. One way to make sure you’re getting the best price is to determine just how much renovation debris you will have when the dust settles.

For example, a total kitchen gut and re-do will likely have quite a bit of waste. This probably includes items like old cabinets, flooring, and even old appliances.

A smaller renovation or remodel like a bedroom may not have quite as much debris. Consider how much debris you estimate you’ll have so that you’re not getting something too large or too small.

Comparing Dumpster Sizes

Residential dumpsters are available in a wide range of sizes, so it’s crucial to know which ones are available to you. Not only will this help with your renovation debris removal, but it also determines the dumpster prices.

A small, two-yard dumpster can handle around 400 pounds, or around 10 to 12 average 13-gallon trash bags. A larger, 10-yard dumpster can take on between four and six thousand pounds or 50 to 60 trash bags.

There are several other dumpster sizes in between these two numbers including four and eight-yard size dumpsters. Ultimately, it’s best to overestimate the size you’ll need, just in case you end up with more debris than you bargained for.

Heavy items like bricks or concrete should go in a roller dumpster so they can be emptied throughout the renovation process. In most cases, the debris cannot go past the top of the dumpster while it sits in front of your home. If you’re in doubt, try to size up whenever possible.

Small renovation projects typically do best with a 10 to 12-yard dumpster size. However, if you’re doing a whole-home renovation, you will probably need one of the largest sizes, which is typically between 30 and 40 yards. 

Clearing the Area for Your Dumpster

Part of the renovation cleanup process is making sure that you have ample room for your dumpster to be delivered, loaded, and removed. The amount of space you need may depend on your local jurisdiction, so check with your city or county to be sure.

A good rule of thumb is that there should be a space of around 20 feet long by 11 feet wide around the perimeter of the dumpster. You should also try to leave around 60 feet or more of space which can include the cleared area for your dumpster delivery truck. In most cases, there should also be at least 23 feet of overhead clearance with no trees or power lines above to ensure a safe process.

Quick Tips: Dumpster Prices and More


Even if renting a dumpster is new to you, there are a few key things to keep in mind so you’re prepared. From how you load and unload your dumpster to a few miscellaneous fees, remember these quick tips to ensure a smooth process.

If your dumpster has a front-loading door, leave it open so you can simply carry heavy items in. Try to fill the dumpster as evenly as possible while you’re working so that it doesn’t get overloaded on one side. Note that there will usually be an additional dump fee per ton, which is usually included in the total rental price. 

If the dumpster is too heavy, you could be charged an overload fee. That’s because drivers are not permitted to transport overloaded dumpsters by law.

Plan your renovation in advance so you know how many days you’ll need the dumpster. If you go over the allotted timeframe that you reserved, you could be charged a late fee for every day you go over the originally agreed-upon timeline. 

What to Know About Prohibited Items

Home renovations can be messy, but there are a few items you can’t put in a dumpster. First, try not to toss food waste into the dumpster, as it can attract rodents and other pests.

Car batteries, industrial or household chemicals, and toxic items should never be added to a dumpster. Appliances with freon like HVAC units or refrigerators are also prohibited. Many local trash removal services can hep you dispose of these items separately. 

Liquid waste that you should never throw into your dumpster includes any form of oil, fuel, or propane tank. Paint, lacquers, and flammable liquids should also never be thrown into your dumpster. Check with your local government to find out the best ways to dispose of this hazardous waste so you can do things as safely as possible.

Find Your Perfect Dumpster 

Renovation projects are exciting, and choosing the right type of dumpster makes getting rid of renovation debris a breeze. Remember these tips to ensure that you’re getting the right size and making the right plans ahead of time for an easy renovation process.

If you’re hunting for the perfect dumpster for your next project in Michigan, contact Plummers Disposal today to find out how we can help!

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