Getting rid of old, useless stuff is often an afterthought when you’re about to take on a big project. Whether you’re remodeling your home, cleaning out an estate or going for a thorough spring clean and decluttering, the final thing you need to do is to clean everything up thoroughly. You might be dealing with a significant amount of construction debris, old furniture, appliances and just plain junk. How can you get rid of this stuff as safely, efficiently and affordably as possible?
You could try and do it yourself with the help of a spacious vehicle and multiple trips to the dump, but the inconvenience and inefficiency make that a bad idea. After eliminating the DIY angle, you have two options: dumpster rental or a junk removal service. Which one is right for you? We’ll break down all the factors to consider, so you can make the most informed decision about cleaning up your space.
What Is Dumpster Rental?
One of your options is just what it sounds like: renting a dumpster. Roll-off dumpsters are large rectangular receptacles often delivered and picked up by a specialized type of semi-truck. Light-to-medium-duty trucks outfitted with a hook-lift system can deliver smaller roll-offs. Unlike standard dumpsters, they have open tops and come in different sizes. They also have wheels that make it easier to move them around and get them on and off the truck. Most dumpster rental companies let you choose from 10-, 20-, 30- or 40-yard sizes.
When you rent a dumpster, the process starts with finding the right time for drop-off. You will likely need to be present to sign off on the delivery. Once the dumpster is in your driveway, it’s time to start filling it up with debris. In general, you have the option to throw items over the side of the dumpster or use the walk-in doors if the company offers that feature.
You’ll usually have five to 10 days to fill up the dumpster. You might opt to pay upfront for a set range of time, after which the company will come pick up the dumpster, or you can play it by ear and call the company for removal once you’re all finished with cleanup.
Pros of Dumpster Rental
Dumpster rental is a viable option for trash hauling, and like every type of service, it has its pros and cons. Let’s take a look at three reasons you might choose this form of trash removal.
The process of renting a dumpster has fewer steps than hiring a junk removal service, because the company isn’t doing any work for you. All they do is drop off and pick up the roll-off receptacle, so there’s no need for someone to visit the site or ask questions to create an estimate. For people who like handling things themselves, this can be a solid pro.
2. Fixed Cost
Again, since the service is only drop-off and pick-up, there’s no labor element to the cost. As long as you can handle the physical demands of hauling trash and removing debris, you can save a little bit of money with dumpster rental. There’s also more likely to be a fixed cost associated with dumpster rental. In general, you’ll pay a flat fee plus applicable costs like extra mileage if you’re far away from the service and the nearest landfill.
3. Flexible Timeframe
Dumpster rental allows you to set whatever pace works best for you. With an average rental time of a week, you can continue disposing of junk and debris at your leisure. If you’re a one-person crew, having a longer timeframe can be helpful to make sure you can clear out everything without feeling too rushed.
Cons of Dumpster Rental
Dumpster rental is by no means all upside. These three significant drawbacks make junk removal the better option.
1. Completely DIY
Site cleanup via dumpster rental is not for the faint of heart. Whatever you’re throwing out, you have to handle yourself. These types of projects are almost always more than one person can realistically take on alone, so you’ll need to enlist help from friends or family willing to break a sweat and get their hands dirty. Since you’ll be removing heavy construction debris or getting rid of large items, you’ll need to be in good physical condition and relatively fit for a dumpster to be a viable option.
2. Injury Potential
With DIY comes the potential for severe injuries. Activities like walking around with armfuls of broken planks or heaving that old couch over the side of the dumpster come with real risks you should consider. These four common injuries can happen to anyone.
- Cuts and scrapes: These are more common in renovation or construction due to the number of sharp objects. A bad cut can easily take you out of commission for the rest of the project, forcing you to hire someone to help out and defeating the purpose of dumpster rental.
- Sprains: There’s often uneven terrain to navigate while carrying heavy items. A raised crack in the sidewalk or unexpected rock in the dirt can easily lead to injured ankles.
- Back and knee injury: Bad lifting form or unexpected strain from a heavy item can lead to serious injury for your back and knees.
- Broken bones: While you’re not necessarily likely to break an arm or leg, broken hands, fingers and toes can result from dropping items.
If you rent a dumpster, you’d better prepare yourself with the proper safety gear like steel-toed boots and back braces at the very least.
3. Damage Potential
Dumpsters, by nature, are large and heavy. If you take advantage of the space and fill one to the brim, it can easily weigh a few tons. There’s a genuine possibility that it could crack your asphalt if parked in your driveway or cause damage to your patio or yard. If you’re parking the dumpster on a public sidewalk, you’ll need a permit and will likely be liable for any damage caused by sheer weight or a careless driver.
What Is a Junk Removal Service?
Junk removal services are hired labor that comes around to haul your junk away for you. When you call up a junk removal service, you’ll speak with someone who will provide a quote based on the size and scope of your removal needs. If you’re only trying to get rid of a few pieces of large furniture like an old freezer or couch, most companies can provide estimates over the phone. If your trash removal needs are more complex, the company may send someone out to your property to ensure you get an accurate quote.
Once you set up an appointment for junk or debris removal, you can sit back, relax and wait for the professionals to break down and haul away everything on your list.
Pros of Junk Removal
Why is junk removal service a better option than dumpster rental? These three advantages make the difference clear.
1. Hands-Off Service
Dealing with junk or debris yourself is a significant hassle, no matter how you approach it. With junk removal services, you don’t have to approach it at all. There’s no worry about recruiting people to help you haul the heavy stuff, and no chance of incurring an injury in the process. Once you tell the workers what you want them to remove, they’ll break it down and take it out without you having to lift a finger.
In many cases, you don’t even need to be there for junk removal services to get the job done. Reputable companies train their employees to be safe, efficient and respectful of your property and possessions.
2. Environmentally Friendly
One significant problem with dumpster removal is that anything and everything that goes in the receptacle ends up in the dump. However, plenty of old items are fully or partially recyclable. When removing appliances, for example, a responsible junk removal company will break down and recycle eligible metal, plastics and other materials for you.
If you have reusable furniture, the company will take it to a nearby donation center when possible. Junk removal service allows you to feel good about where your old items are going, without having to recycle or donate it yourself.
3. Minimally Invasive
Renting a dumpster is often a bit of a production. Even the smallest receptacle will take up a conspicuous amount of space on your property or the adjacent street or sidewalk, often resulting in your driveway being useless for the duration of the rental. Rather than having the eyesore of a dumpster hanging around for a week or so, junk removal is maximally efficient. Workers get in and get out quickly, only taking as much time as is necessary for safe removal.
Cons of Junk Removal: Cost Considerations
It’s difficult to name any disadvantages of junk removal. The only real reasons not to choose junk removal are if you already have a team in place to handle a large amount of debris, or if your project is so massive it requires the biggest dumpster. The main potential drawback of junk removal is the cost, but there are only a handful of times when junk removal is more expensive than renting a dumpster.
How much to rent a dumpster? The average cost of renting a dumpster is almost $385, although it can range as high as nearly $900. Most dumpster rental companies have a base cost for renting the dumpster for a single day. The base cost of a 10-yard dumpster is around $300 per day, and a 20-yard dumpster will run around $420 for the first day. Each additional day incurs more costs at a reduced rate. For example, a one-day rental may cost $300, a two-day rental may cost $350 and a three-day rental may run $375.
How much is junk removal? The average cost of junk removal hovers around $235, with an upper range of about $625. Large furniture pieces are typically about $80, major appliances about $100 and larger items like an outdoor hot tub will run around $130. Junk removal companies typically base their pricing on how much space your junk takes up in the vehicle. A completely full load, measuring about 420 to 480 cubic feet, has an average cost of $500. The minimum load, usually up to 60 cubic feet, has an average cost of about $100. For the average homeowner’s removal needs, junk removal is almost always more cost-effective than renting a dumpster.
Materials and Size Matter
Many people view dumpsters as a catch-all for any type of trash or debris, but did you know there is a laundry list of things you can’t dispose of in a residential dumpster? Household hazardous materials include:
- Aerosol cans
- Fluorescent light bulbs
- Household cleaning products
- Motor oil
- Paint, paint cans and paint thinner
- Propane tanks
These items are corrosive, flammable, explosive or even poisonous, and a dumpster rental company can’t accept them. Not every junk removal service will offer the option to dispose of hazardous materials, but the possibility is there, whereas you know you can’t put these items in the dump.
The size of your junk or debris pile affects your choice, too. The fact is that most homeowners and even many businesses don’t need enough junk removed to warrant renting a whole dumpster. Unless there is a significant amount of debris due to renovation, junk removal will almost always provide the best value thanks to the calculation of cost based on truck space. Junk removal costs are much more flexible and can save you money.
Get the Best Prices at All Purpose Clean Up
If you need junk removed from your home, construction site or office in Washington, D.C., turn to All Purpose Clean Up. We offer the best rates in the nation, starting at just $85. Our wide range of services includes:
- Commercial waste removal
- Residential junk removal
- Construction waste removal
- Eviction removal
- Debris removal
- Furniture disposal
We make it quick and easy to set up your appointment. Just give us a call at 844-427-5865, email us at firstname.lastname@example.org or fill out our contact form to get the ball rolling. If you send us a photo, we’ll be able to give you a quicker and more accurate quote. Once we set an appointment, our crew does the heavy lifting, and you don’t pay until the job is complete.
All Purpose Clean Up is an owner-operated company headed by an expert in the cleaning industry. We understand how frustrating it is to have old, useless items taking up space in your home or place of work, and we strive to get it out of your way efficiently and responsibly. If junk is holding you back and you’re not sure of the best way to get rid of it, All Purpose Clean Up is the way to go. For all your questions and concerns, our telephone support team is available. Don’t let junk keep you down. Call All Purpose Clean Up today.