Hire a skip or go to the tip?
Unsure whether it’s better to hire a skip for your rubbish or take it all to the local tip yourself? We’ve got the low-down to help you make an informed decision. Ask yourself 3 simple questions:
1) What are you getting rid of?
Whether you should hire a skip or go to the tip largely depends on what it is you’re throwing away.
As a general rule, you can place anything that is not harmful or hazardous to living things or the environment in a skip. If you are looking to dispose of a combination of different (non-hazardous!) materials, a skip will probably be the preferred choice. Going to the tip would mean having to separate your rubbish and sort it into its respective containers, whereas hiring a mixed waste skip will spare you this inconvenience. Simply chuck it all in and let the skip hire company do the rest!
Not only that, but taking your rubbish to the dump can make the inside of your car filthy or – depending on what you’re getting rid of – even cause damage to it:
- Garden waste brings with it mud, twigs and leaves. Not to mention all manner of creepy-crawlies.
- Sharper and pointed objects can scratch or mark the upholstery and other materials in your car’s interior.
- Old wooden furniture and carpets can produce more dust than you might expect.
But: if you’re throwing away anything that cannot be put in a skip, you will need to take it elsewhere. For your convenience, most tips accept items that you can’t put in a skip – such as small electrical equipment, batteries and paints.
2) How much are you getting rid of?
If we’re talking a minor renovation project that won’t last any longer than a week, chances are it’s perfectly feasible to make a couple of trips to the tip. And let’s face it, any excuse to avoid placing an unsightly skip in front of the beautiful home you’ve worked so hard for.
However, if you’re undertaking an ongoing project that will result in more than a few bags of rubbish, a skip may be just what you need. Particularly if you don’t have access to a larger vehicle – this would mean having to make countless treks to the dump in your car, which can be a real hassle if your local refuse centre isn’t as local as you might have hoped. Flinging your waste into a skip at the front of your house as and when you produce it and having it taken away is so much easier.
Some tips even limit the number of visits you’re permitted to make, so don’t get caught out – hire a skip! Most skip hire companies have a wide range of types and sizes available, so you can choose exactly the right one for your project. This handy skip size tool will help you to find the perfect size to suit your requirements based on approximately how many standard bin bags it can hold.
3) Are you on a budget?
In these uncertain times, we are all keen to tighten the purse strings a little more than usual. And taking your rubbish to the tip certainly appears the most wallet-friendly option at first glance.
After all, tips are legally obliged to accept household waste free of charge. This includes garden waste, paper/cardboard, clothing, furniture, carpets and electricals.
Non-household waste, on the other hand, is expensive for tips to dispose of. This means they often charge you for the privilege of taking it off your hands. So, if you’re looking to get rid of any building materials – such as bathroom and kitchen items – or any plasterboard, rubble or tyres, always check with your local refuse centre to find out how much they charge.
Also consider the amount you could have to spend on fuel. Is your nearest tip within comfortable walking distance? If so, happy days! You can probably get away with a couple of trips on foot accompanied by your trusty wheelbarrow.
But: multiple journeys back and forth in a car or van will see your fuel costs rack up. If you’re not sure roughly how much you would pay for each trip, this journey cost calculator can give you an estimate. Throw in the cost of potentially cleaning the inside of your vehicle and repairing any damage once you have disposed of all your rubbish, and a trip to the tip suddenly sounds like a rather expensive, not to mention troublesome, option.