What Can You Put in a Dumpster: A Comprehensive Guide

May 9, 2023

Renting a dumpster can be a quick way to dispose of large quantities of unwanted items rather than waiting for the weekly trash pickup. If you’re in the middle of a renovation project or chucking out old storage, you’ll want to get rid of the debris all at once rather than in small sections, and that’s just half of what you can put in a dumpster rental.

Dumpster rentals like Momentum Dumpsters are the perfect way to dispose of household waste, electronics, furniture, attic storage, and old appliances. Still, some items should never go into a dumpster because they could contaminate landfill soil. Hazardous, toxic, flammable, and recyclable trash should be disposed of at a particular facility to avoid contamination and harm. 

This guide will answer “What can you put in a dumpster rental?” and help you decide whether you need one. 

What Can You Put in a Dumpster Rental?

Please note that what you can put in a waste management dumpster depends on your location’s regulations. Some areas allow different items, but this is a general guide that will coincide with most dumpsters. 

A roll-off dumpster vs. regular dumpster: A roll-off is more rectangularly shaped than a regular one and utilizes wheels to roll the dumpster into place. 

Household Waste 

This includes everyday non-recyclable items like plastic utensils, wrappers, plates, packaging, etc. Multiple bags of waste might require a dumpster for adequate cleanup. 


Chairs, tables, nightstands, bed frames, mattresses, bookcases, and shelves are just some furniture items you can put in a dumpster. However, a mattress that may carry bed bugs or contain bodily fluids is considered a biohazard and should be disposed of at the proper facility. You can book a mattress pickup, especially for this instance. 

Check with your dumpster rental whether they have weight and size restrictions that prevent you from putting a bed frame inside the dumpster.


Dispose of electronics like televisions, computers, stereo systems, speakers, massagers, and iPhones in dumpsters. However, remove any batteries from these devices before disposal. Also, ensure the TV's height doesn't exceed the dumpster's walls.

Coolant-Free Appliances 

To further answer the question of 'what can you put in a roll-off dumpster or a regular dumpster?', coolant-free appliances like a vacuum, stove, microwave, and dishwasher are safe, but not a refrigerator. Dumpster refrigerator disposal is only allowed in some places due to the freon. 

Construction and Demolition Debris 

After you check the weight limit of your dumpster rental, you can dispose of construction materials. This includes drywall, insulations, wood, roofing materials, concrete, PVC, nails and screws, carpet, glass, tiles, etc.

Yard Waste

Dirt, sand, Leaves, branches, and grass piles are some items that are considered yard waste. Specific locations/developments offer yard waste pickup during the month and prefer residents dispose of those rather than in a dumpster. 

Two questions to consider:

  1. Would yard waste be put to better use in compost?
  2. Would yard waste take up precious space in a landfill or dumpster? 

Storage Cleanout 

Cleaning out an attic or old storage unit usually results in unwanted clothes, books, toys, and trinkets that take up too much space – so into the dumpster they go!

What can you NOT put in a roll-off dumpster or regular dumpster?

Hazardous, flammable, and toxic items are not permitted in a dumpster. This includes:

  • Batteries
    • They may contain: cadmium, lithium, zinc, sulfuric acid.
  • Auto parts 
    • Due to motor oil, gasoline, petroleum, freon, and antifreeze common in vehicles.
  • Medical waste
    • This includes syringes, used surgical tools, and bloodied misc. items.
  • Refrigerator
    • They contain freon, a coolant, which is toxic.
  • Lightbulbs 
    • Trace amounts of mercury in certain bulbs.
  • Tires
    • They should always be recycled! 
  • Firearms and ammunition
    • Explosive material
  • Paint cans 
    • Explosive material
  • Water heater
    • They may collect gasses and explode.

Not Sure What Your Dumpster Rentals/Location Allows?

Call them and do your research before to ensure your item is allowed. It's important not to dispose of things that could end up in a landfill and pollute the soil and water. Recycle those items instead, if possible, or bring them to a particular waste management facility. 

Need a Dumpster in the Tennessee Area?

Now that you know what you can put in a dumpster rental, it's time to find a dumpster. Momentum Dumpsters is a bin service operating out of Maryville, Tennessee, with rentals priced from $300-525.00. Choose between a 15-yard and 30-yard dumpster, starting at just $10/day. Momentum Dumpsters is a reliable and affordable dumpster rental service.

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