What You Shouldn’t Put in a Dumpster

Roll-off dumpsters are a convenient and affordable way to get rid of the waste that a trash company is not able to pick up. Most items from home renovation projects like roof shingles and asbestos will not be picked up by trash but can be put in a dumpster.

It’s important to remember that dumpsters are not a catch-all. Landfills are carefully managed locations that are federally regulated to protect both the environment and the employees who work there. As such, not just anything can be thrown into a dumpster and hauled away to a landfill. There are certain restrictions that should be adhered to for proper disposal.

Items that Cannot Be Placed in a Dumpster

Here is a brief list of items that should not be put in a dumpster:

  1. Chemicals: Lead-based household cleaners, paint, pesticides, and anything else that may damage either the environment by seeping into the ground or the wildlife that feeds on refuse. If you have any questionable chemicals please contact us before disposing.
  2. Wet paint: Wet paint must be dried completely before being disposed of. Alternatively, you can contact a hazardous waste drop-off facility or donate the paint.
  3. Batteries: Batteries also have a separate disposal protocol and should not be thrown into a dumpster. This includes anything that’s attached to a battery as well such as a cellphone. Batteries contain things like lead, cadmium, mercury and other such materials that are harmful to the environment. Places that sell batteries will often take back used ones to dispose of properly.
  4. Engine Oil: Engine oil should be returned to auto repair shops that can properly dispose of the liquid.
  5. TVs or computer accessories:  Computer parts such as hard drives contain certain elements that as they degrade may cause environmental damage.
  6. Florescent bulbs: Due to mercury concerns, recycling fluorescent bulbs is highly recommended by the Georgia Dept. of Natural Resources and is required for many facilities throughout the state
  7. Tires: Most landfills do not accept tires, therefore it is recommended to recycle tires at your auto repair shop.
  8. Heavy materials: Materials like concrete and asphalt can be loaded in pieces smaller than 3 feet across in any direction; however, trucks can only haul 10 tons of material legally so it’s best to use other methods for disposing of large amounts of these materials.


The good news is that anything that cannot be put in a traditional dumpster can still be disposed of, you just need the right type of container. If you are in need of waste management services and have questions about what you can put in a dumpster, contact us. We can help you determine what size and type of dumpster you need.