Organizing A Playroom

If you have a playroom for your children at home, it can be tempting to close the door on the room at the end of each day. The idea that it will only get messed up again the next day is correct but also means the playroom will never be tidy. 

Although you have a playroom to give your child or children somewhere to play, you can use a playroom as an educational room. You can teach children from a young age about tidying their toys and making their spaces clean. 

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Having an excellent organization structure in your playroom will allow your child or children to have space to play and places for each toy to be. It will also help you to keep track of the toys that your children own and retire toys as appropriate. 

So, what are the best and easiest ways to organize your playroom? Do not despair; we have detailed some of our favorite ideas below to help you to get started.

Declutter

The first step to having an organized playroom is to make sure that only what you need is in there. The best way to do this is to begin decluttering, you can do this area by area, or you can do the entire room in one. 

First, remove any broken toys. If they cannot be fixed, there is no need for them to be in your playroom. Once you have removed the broken toys, it is time to remove the toys your children have outgrown. You can do this with your children so that they feel involved in the process and do not become upset that their toys are missing. 

This is also a great way to educate your children about donating to other children and charities. 

Use Clear Storage Boxes

If you use clear storage boxes to store your children’s toys, you can more easily see where everything is. This makes it easier if your children want to play with something specific. Using clear storage boxes means you do not need to get multiple boxes out to find what is needed. More boxes being brought out to check means more chance of your children pulling out extra toys while you look. 

Clear storage boxes are also a great way to help your children clean up each night as they can put everything back easily where they can see it fits.

Have Places for their Favorites

Having spaces for their favorite toys is a great way to get children started on the idea of clearing their toys away. A favorite doll into a dollhouse each night before they go to bed is a great way to get started with organization. 

Labeling 

Using labels as your children get older is a great way for them to see where their toys should be. As your children get old enough to read the labels on the boxes, your children can see where each toy should go at the end of the day. If your children are younger, you could add pictures for visual cues of where toys should be.

However, as your children grow, they will inevitably outgrow the toys they currently have, so we recommend you use labels that can be easily removed from the boxes. 

Small Toys

Your children will have small toys throughout their childhood that can become problematic if left loose. We recommend making sure you have containers for these types of toys. Little storage buckets with a lid are a great idea so that if they are knocked over, there is less mess. 

Shelve the Books

We recommend you have an organized space for books, such as shelves or a book display unit. Giving your children a space in their playroom to sit quietly and read will help them to unwind and settle towards the end of the day. Having a seat or an area with nice comfortable floor pillows is a great idea, and this will help to keep books in a better condition. 

Make your Storage Accessible

While it can be tempting to buy storage solutions that save space on your floor to give more space for the children to play, they are not always the most effective. A tall storage unit will mean that your children cannot reach all of the storage areas. This makes it more difficult for them to clear up at the end of the day. 

A tall storage unit can also mean some toys will not be played with if they are in the higher containers. Or you will spend all of your time moving between the playroom and other rooms of your house to grab toys that are higher. 

Having accessible storage for your children may mean less floor space but will be invaluable in other ways. 

Move Toys that need Supervision

Messy play is an essential part of childhood, but it is not an everyday, unsupervised occurrence. Keeping toys that would make a lot of mess out of reach is especially helpful to keep your playroom organized. 

Play Mats 

Using play mats on the floor is a way of keeping the toys contained in one area of the playroom. If your children know that play is to be kept on the playmats, you will have less chance of toys being under furniture. 

Cleaning Time Games

Making cleaning time into playtime is a good way to encourage your children to clean up each evening. You can try several games to decide which works best for your children but getting the children involved in creating the game will help. 

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Making the Best of Small Spaces

Having a small home does not mean that your home needs to be cluttered or that you will be forced to become a minimalist. You can make the most of the space that you do have to ensure that your home does not become cluttered. We advise that you are organized and make the best use of the space that you do have. 

To help you get started with this, we have details of some of our favorite ideas to make the most of the spaces you have in a smaller home. 

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Living Room

There are several ways that you can make the most of the space in your living room. The living room is often the main entertaining and relaxing room in the home. Having a living room that is cluttered can feel chaotic and make you feel unable to relax. In contrast, if you move too many items out of your living room, it can make it feel sparse and cold. 

Some of the ways to make the most of this room are: 

  1. Neutral Color Schemes

Keeping your color palette neutral is a great way to make any room seem bigger. Lighter walls make the space feel brighter. Continuing this theme in all aspects of the living room color scheme, from furniture to trinkets, will help too. Although light colors are often not chosen because they ‘show the dirt,’ they are a great way to create the illusion of a bigger room and more space. 

  1. Buy Big Rugs

A big rug that covers a wide surface area creates the illusion of space too. A rug that goes under multiple pieces of furniture makes your eye view the wider space. We recommend that you do not pick a rug with an overwhelming pattern or bright colors, as this can make a room feel smaller. 

  1. Get Creative with Storage

Storage units or cupboards are not effective for maximizing space, as the furniture itself will feel cramped. We love floating shelves instead of shelving units to make your living room feel more spacious. Having a shelf out in the open will also help you to keep your room less cluttered. Being able to see what is on a shelf stops you from overloading the shelf. 

  1. Move Items off the Floor

The more floor space in your living room, the better. Having items such as your television mounted on the wall draws your eye up. Having the television on the wall and removing a television unit will benefit a small living room. 

Kitchen

Your kitchen is where you will spend less time, usually, than your living room. However, having a cluttered kitchen can be more problematic for you on a day-to-day basis. If you have a kitchen that does not have a lot of space, it can make preparing and cooking meals difficult. When dealing with a small kitchen counter space is premium, to make the most of it, we recommend:

  1. Hanging items above the countertop

We love the magnetic strips to hang rails above the counters. You can use them for so many things. We prefer them hanging just under the wall cupboards. They are so versatile, and you can utilize them for mugs, knives, and utensils.

  1. Clear your Counters

Having clear countertops is essential in a smaller kitchen. The more space you have to work on, the more relaxing your cooking experience will be. The best way to do this is through decluttering. If you are not using an item in your kitchen, ‘keeping it for a rainy day’ is not necessary. We recommend going through your cupboards and drawers regularly and purging those items you bought for one project several years ago. 

Also, similarly to in the living room, use floating shelves to store cookbooks and have a light and neutral color scheme to make the room feel bigger. 

Bathroom

Your bathroom is not a room that you will spend a huge amount of time in but is one that can quickly and easily become cluttered. We recommend ensuring your bathroom products are put away as soon as you use them. There is nothing worse in a small bathroom than every surface being covered in tubes of toothpaste or hair products. 

  1. Utilize Empty Walls

We recommend you make use of the empty wall space in your bathroom. You can use this to hang a towel rail, some floating shelves, or a small medicine cabinet. This will help you to manage the items in your bathroom while not having units taking up floor space. 

  1. Reflect Light

Including a mirror in your bathroom is a great idea. The mirror will reflect any light sources in the room, which will make your bathroom feel bigger. This could be a wall-mounted mirror or a medicine cabinet with mirrored doors. 

Bedroom

Walking into your bedroom should not be stressful, seeing lots of clutter or having no space to move around. Unlike rooms for entertaining, your bedroom is important for your wellbeing and sleep, so some of our space maximizing techniques are:

  1. Declutter

The first step in any room is to make sure you only keep items you use or need. Clearing out old clothes and books is a great first step in making the most of your space. 

  1. Buy Dual Purpose Furniture

Having furniture that serves two purposes is a brilliant way to make the most of the space it uses. A bed with storage underneath or a chair that incorporates bookshelves will benefit you. 

Of course, as we have mentioned with other rooms, neutral, light color schemes, mirrors on the wall, and floating shelves work great in a bedroom too. 

The Top Three Products Reinventing The Trash Can

Technology has changed many areas of our lives and will continue to do so far into the future. While it may be expected for certain products to be improved by technology, you may have never considered trash cans to be included in this.

However, there are several products available right now that are revolutionizing the market when it comes to trash cans and the way we handle the waste. These products are being used in homes, businesses, and even at parties across the nation to change the way we impact the planet with our rubbish.

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If you are interested in changing the way you deal with trash, then you will want to check out these three products.

#1: Bruno Smart Can

Bruno is known as the world’s first Smart Can and has brought the humble trash can into the future, along with the rest of us.

This trash can works with smartphone connectivity, allowing you to control your waste with the touch of a button on your phone, as well as offering easy in-bag storage and a built-in vacuum. This vacuum is present at the bottom of the trash can and is one of the best features as it works to suck up everything from cat hairs to food crumbs and directs it directly to the trash can. 

The Bruno Smart Can was welcomed into the market following a successful Kickstarter campaign in 2015. The company raised over $117,0000, which was an incredible feat considering their goal was $50,000.

Bruno was brought to life by Jim Howard and Lori Montag, who gave the smart can a human name as it works on intelligence. This trash can will remind users to take out the trash with notifications on their smartphone and will also send an alert when it is low on trash bags.

With Bruno, you will never have to deal with the last-minute rush before the trash is collected, as notifications will be sent directly to you ahead of time. 

#2: Drop Bucket

Festivals and other large public events can be an incredible strain on resources. The amount of trash that is left behind following a large public event is incredible and can be difficult to handle alone.

This is where Drop Bucket comes in, as this trash can is designed to be easy to carry.

Developed by two Denmark students, Marie S. Berggreen and Heiða G. Nolsøe, the Drop Bucket is made of recycled cardboard and is designed as an impromptu trash can. As it is made from cardboard, this trash can is lightweight, so it can be carried and is foldable, making it easy to set up wherever you are.

The Drop Bucket is now an award-winning trash can that has been hailed for its innovative design, but it is also incredibly beneficial for its eco-friendly properties. This trash can has helped to reduce the human footprint at many public events, like festivals, across Denmark since its development and continues to be a great option for these kinds of events.

The company desires to expand into Europe and other locations due to the success it has seen in its home country. 

#3: Trash-Ease

Disposing of trash on the go has never been an easy feat which is why Trash-Ease was developed.

This trash can is a wireframed device that has been designed to hold a trash bag and allows them to hang from surfaces. Whether you are sitting in the garden enjoying some canned drinks or are in the local park having a picnic, Trash Ease can be brought along with you to provide a holder for all kinds of trash.

Trash-Ease is a simple device that has so many benefits. It is foldable, so it can be taken on the go with you and is incredibly useful in camping trips, sports matches and games, and cookouts, to name but a few.

The wireframe can be attached to a range of surfaces making for easy access to a trash container at all times. At the end of the event, the trash bag can be removed from Trash-Ease, tied up, and thrown in the dumpster preventing litter.

You can find Trash-Ease in Walmarts across the nation, making it incredibly accessible.

The Future Of Trash Cans

While you might not have given it much thought, trash cans are an important part of our everyday routines. Traditional trash cans are good for a specific purpose, but as you can see from this article, there are many ways they can be improved.

The three products in this article are excellent examples of the innovation that can be applied to most everyday products to make things easier and more sustainable for everyone.

With the innovative technology we now have access to, the future of trash cans is only going to get better. The evolution of the trash can that we have already witnessed plays a huge part in benefitting the environment and can help people lead a more sustainable lifestyle.

While we can focus on ways to reduce our waste, it is still a good idea to highlight the companies that are making it easier to dispose of the waste we do create. 

Brands like those mentioned in this article are making it easier for us to throw away the trash, preventing litter, and keeping our spaces clean, which has long-lasting benefits for the environment. 

 

12 Practical Eco-Friendly Products For Your Everyday Routine

There are some small things you can add to your current routine that will make a huge impact on the environment. 

Replacing some of your current everyday products with more sustainable options can be a great way to go green, and it can be incredibly easy to do so.

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12 Eco-Friendly Products For Any Home

Here are 12 of the best eco-friendly products to replace what you currently use: 

  • BogoBrush’s Recyclable, Biodegradable Toothbrushes

It is possible to change your impact on the environment through oral hygiene. 

The recyclable toothbrush is made from recycled #5 plastic and can be thrown into your curbside recycling trash when you are finished with it. The biodegradable option is made from bioplastic, which means it can be thrown into your compost pile once it has been used.

  • River Soap’s All Natural Bars

River Soap makes 100% natural, cruelty-free and biodegradable bars of soap that can help keep your body and the environment clean.

Each bar of soap is made using a palm and coconut base with essential oils for fragrance. Spices and botanicals are added for color, giving customers various options, including a majority of vegan options except for the Milk and Honey bars.

  • Uncommon Coffee Roaster’s Compostable Pods

Becoming more sustainable does not mean you have to give up on your little luxuries, including home-brewed coffee. This is because these are the first 100% compostable pods on the market.

These coffee pods are made using plant-based materials, which will completely biodegrade within 90 days, and you can be thrown into your compost pile. The packaging is also 100% recyclable.

  • High Sierra’s Low-Flow Showerheads

Our daily showers use an incredible amount of water, but that does not mean you have to give them up to become more eco-friendly. These low-flow showerheads rely on innovative technology, which means they use 40% less water than even other low-flow showerheads.

Another great benefit of these showerheads is the fact they come with fewer clogging problems than others on the market.

  • Shea Moisture’s Incredibly Green Hair Products

This line of green hair products from Shea Moisture actively keeps our water supplies clean as they do not use petroleum, parabens, and other harmful chemicals in any of their products.

Instead, this line of hair care products relies on all-natural, organic ingredients that have been sustainably produced. All of their products are fairly traded and cruelty-free.

  • EcoVibe Apparel’s Earth-Friendly Fashion

With EcoVibe’s clothing line, you can remain fashionably dressed without damaging the environment. This brand creates every piece of clothing as sustainably as possible.

For example, this brand relies on modal, which is a material that has been made from beech pulp. This can be extracted without cutting down trees, making it incredibly sustainable. As well as being sustainable, this material is also CO2-neutral, stain-resistant, and extremely durable.

  • Green Forest Paper’s Recycled Toilet Paper

The bathroom can be an incredibly wasteful place in more ways than one. Green Forest Paper wants to change this as much as they can, which is why their recycled toilet paper is made from recycled paper, including their tissues and cardboard rolls.

All components are 100% recycled and have not been treated with toxic bleach, which is normally used for whitening. Recycled paper also has shorter fibers which means it breaks down faster in septic systems.

  • Bee’s Wrap’s Reusable Plastic Wrap

Bee’s Wrap is a Vermont-based business that creates reusable food wraps. Instead of relying on the plastic wrap you usually have in the kitchen, which will only end up in landfills, you can replace it with this reusable wrap which is made from a mixture of beeswax, tree resin, and organic jojoba oil.

The heat from your hands allows you to mold the wrap to any desired shape to cover food. Once you have used it to wrap, rinse it in cool water and clean it with dish soap so it can be used again and again.

  • Full Circle’s Kitchen Compost Bins

With these compost bins, it will be easier to collect food waste and prevent it from going into landfills. Collect food waste and add it to your compost pile with these handy storage bins.

  •  Go Green’s No-Packaging-Needed Lunch Box

If you are worried about the amount of packaging that goes into your kid’s school lunches or your work lunch, then this product is a must-have.

Each lunchbox contains several compartments which can be used to separate and store food without the need for additional packaging. You can buy packs from this branch which contain a fun carrying case, ice pack, and reusable water bottle.

  •  Klean Kanteen’s Reusable Bottles

Klean Kanteen created the original steel water bottle in 2004 and has not looked back since.

This brand now has containers for all kinds of liquid and should be a go-to brand for those who want to be more sustainable in their daily routines.

  •  Lunchskin’s Reusable Sandwich Bags

Whether you are packing lunches for the family every day or are wanting to take snacks on the go, these reusable sandwich bags can be incredibly useful.

Not only do they prevent the use of plastic sandwich bags, but they can also help you save money over time as they are reusable. They come in various designs and are made to meet FDA’s standards for food safety. 

What To Do When A Pipe Bursts In Your Home

There is nothing worse for a homeowner than finding a burst pipe and a water leak somewhere on your property. This is something that happens more commonly than you would like, so it is a good idea to be prepared.

In this guide, we are sharing everything you need to know regarding a burst pipe, including the signs of a broken pipe as well as what you should do for this time-sensitive issue.

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Signs Of A Busted Water Pipe

Sometimes, there will be signs of a busted pipe before serious damage occurs. To keep yourself prepared, the following are symptoms of a busted pipe that you should look out for to prevent further damage:

  • Fluctuating water pressure
  • Discolored, rusty water that has a strange smell
  • Clanging noises coming from the pipes
  • Puddles forming under the sinks
  • A sudden spike in water bill payments

If you notice any of these signs of a busted water pipe, then you will need to act fast to prevent additional damage to your home.

What To Do When Your Pipes Burst

There are some things that you should do as soon as possible if you notice that your pipes have burst at home, such as:

  • Turn Off Your Water and Drain The Faucets

The first thing you need to do if you notice a burst pipe in your home is to turn the water off. 

The sooner you can shut your water off, the better, as this will minimize the chances of water damage. You can turn your water off yourself, and your main water shut-off valve is very likely to be located near your water heater, so check a crawl space or the basement.

Once the water has been shut off, you will now need to drain the remaining cold water in your pipes. You can do this by running the faucets, which will not only drain the water but also relieve the pressure on your pipe system, which will prevent additional areas from freezing.

As well as running the faucets, flush all of the toilets in the home too until the water runs out.

After the water has stopped running from the faucets, any leaks should stop. Depending on the location and size of the leak, you may also have to turn off the electricity in your home. 

If you think that the leak has already been intercepted with an electrical outlet or socket in your home, this is a serious issue that you will need to deal with immediately.

  • Locate The Burst Pipe

After draining the water, your next step is to try and locate the burst pipe.

If the leak has been happening for a while, you will need to be careful when entering rooms and check for bulging ceilings or other warning signs that water damage has already occurred.

Should you catch a leak early enough, place a bucket underneath to capture all the draining water.

  • Call In Professional Help

As soon as possible, call in experts to help you with your burst pipes and to prevent further damage within the home.

You will need to hire a professional plumber to fix or replace your burst pipes. If you have any additional damage, such as close to electrical systems, then you will also need to hire a reliable electrician.

The costs of repairing a burst pipe can vary based on the damage and your location, but it has been reported that homeowners spend between $1,000 and $4,000 on burst pipes. This price will also be affected if you have to use out-of-hours emergency services.

  • Document Any Damage For Insurance Purposes

If the damage from your burst pipes is extensive, then you should document it for insurance purposes. Make sure to take photos of the damaged areas and continue to do so throughout the entire repair process.

Take close-up images of the water damage and use a measuring tape in the images to show the size of the damage, as this will make it easier to claim on your insurance. Ensure you take the same image from multiple angles to show the extent of the damage. When taking photos of the water damage, you may need to turn the water back on for a short while to show the extent of the leaks. 

The more information you can collect, the easier it will be to make an insurance claim following burst pipes.

Once water damage has occurred, there is usually a very short period of around three days before microbes spread and mold grows. This is why you need to report a claim as soon as possible to prevent long-term issues and more expensive repairs.

If you do not know what is covered in your homeowner’s insurance, you can find out by reaching out to a local public adjuster. These will usually review your policy for free, so you will know what to expect before making a claim.

  • Start Cleaning Up

While a lot of the work will be done by a professional, if you are dealing with a leak, you will have to do some cleaning yourself. 

This should be mainly focused on drying wet areas as much as possible and working to keep them dry as much as you can. The longer water stands, the more likely it will be that mold will grow, so keep it dry. 

 

Renting A Dumpster Vs. Going To The Dump: Which is Better?

Cleaning after a home improvement project is a large task within itself, but this is made more difficult when you have to consider the different systems for waste removal.

All forms of home improvement tasks can result in debris, waste, and general trash that needs to be removed, and it is very likely going to be too much for your standard household trashcan. Household waste and debris can also be heavy, which makes it difficult to remove from your site unaided.

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No matter what you are doing to your home or what you are throwing away, the best waste removal solution for you will be the easiest thing to do. You want to make things easy for yourself when it comes to waste removal, as this will keep your site safe throughout the project.

For household waste, you have two main options for removal: renting a dumpster or going to the dump. In this guide, we are going to discuss which is the better option for you.

Dumpster Rental Vs. Visiting The Dump: The Basics

When deciding between renting a dumpster or going to the dump for the best waste removal option, there are three important factors you need to consider:

  1. Hauling Capacity
  2. Amount of Work 
  3. Convenience

With these in mind, we can take a closer look at both options to see which is best for your needs.

Which Waste Removal Method Is Best?

Dumpster Rental

  • Hauling Capacity

When it comes to renting a dumpster from a local company, there will typically be several options of containers for you to choose from. 

At Eagle Dumpster Rental, we have several container sizes available to rent, which can haul an average of between 2,000 and 20,000 pounds meaning there will be a dumpster for your needs, no matter what they are.

  • Amount of Work

Working on a home improvement project of any size will take a lot of time and effort. This is why you need to make waste removal as easy as possible, so it is something you can maintain throughout the process.

Renting a dumpster can make things incredibly easy when working on your home, as a dumpster will be delivered to your site. Dumpster rental companies offer various rental periods for their containers which is how long you can have access to the container. 

With a dumpster on your site, you can simply walk to the driveway to dispose of trash or throw items from your home into the container. The dumpster can be used until it is full and with varying sizes available. This can be a large amount of waste.

  • Convenience

With a dumpster on your site, you can fill the container with the trash as you work, and you will be able to do this for as long as the rental period is or until the container becomes full – whatever happens first. 

If your container has become full before you have finished using it, another dumpster can be delivered to your site when the rental company comes to pick up the first one to provide ongoing waste removal.

All forms of waste can be thrown into the dumpster as you work, keeping the site clean and safe at all times. Once the container is full, it will be collected from your site by the dumpster rental company, which will then dispose of the waste safely.

Going To The Dump

  • Hauling Capacity

To take waste to the dump, you will have to use a pickup truck. 

You can rent pickups from various local services, and the capacity will differ depending on what is available. On average, a pickup truck can handle around 1,000 pounds (half a ton) of debris.

  • Amount of Work

If you have more than 1,000 pounds of waste, then you will have to make multiple trips to the dump in your pickup truck,

Collecting waste for the dump also means you have to keep your site organized as there is no specific area for debris to go. You will need to dedicate some area for waste which can make things tricky to manage along with all the other work you have to do.

Disposing of household waste and debris by going to the dump can also be made more difficult by the opening hours of your local dump. There may be times when the dump is closed which means you have to leave debris on your site for longer than you desire, which can make things difficult when trying to stay organized.

  • Convenience

Going to the dump can be easy if you live close to your local dumpsite. However, if you are some distance away from this site and need to make multiple trips, then it can not only take a long time to remove waste from your site, but it can also cost a lot of money to do so.

Taking waste to the dump also means you will have to take breaks from your work as you have to leave home.  

Summary

With these three main areas in mind, renting a dumpster is certainly the easiest option for all home improvements.

As one of the leading dumpster rental companies in the United States, Eagle Dumpster Rental can serve counties across the nation and offer containers of varying sizes to suit all needs.

America Recycles Day Inspires Thousands To Take Recycling Pledge

The average American generates 4.6 pounds of trash every day, and yet less than half of this is recycled. This is a huge problem but one that many people are not even aware of.

This is where Keep America Beautiful comes in with their America Recycles Day, which will take place every November. This organized national event is a way to get people interested and inspired in regards to how they handle their trash, showing the impact our waste can have on the environment and aiming towards a brighter future.

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About Keep America Beautiful

Keep America Beautiful (KAB) is a nonprofit organization that is dedicated to educating and inspiring people across the nation to contribute to more beautiful communities.

This organization aims to get people inspired to take better care of their local communities and environments, which will have a larger impact over time. KAB works with communities across the United States, providing educational services as well as events as a way to get people interested in their local environments.

As part of their efforts, Keep America Beautiful and its chapters across the nation celebrate America Recycles Day on November 15 every year.

What Is America Recycles Day?

America Recycles Day is a nationally recognized day that is dedicated to both promoting and celebrating recycling efforts throughout the United States.

On America Recycles Day, which is organized and covered by KAB, events take place across the nation intending to educate neighbors, friends, and colleagues about recycling. 

Each year, there is a new focus for America Recycles Day as a way for KAB to educate people across the nation and to keep people interested. 

For example, in 2019, all events were focused on increasing the national recycling rate, which at the time was 34%. As part of these events, the KAB encouraged people across the nation to take the #BeRecycled Pledge, which was their way of showing their dedication to improving local communities and, therefore, the wider environment.

On every America Recycles Day, events take place which aim to educate people across the nation about recycling, the benefits of this act, and what happens to our trash once it has been thrown away.

Keep America Beautiful believes that educating people about their impact is the best way to see change, as many people are not even aware of what happens to their trash once it has been thrown away. By showing the impact of every piece of trash and how recycling can improve this, KAB intends to increase the recycling rate, and this is a goal that becomes closer every America Recycles Day.

How To Celebrate America Recycles Day

In honor of America Recycles Day, communities across the country host their own events and take part in larger KAB actions with the shared goal of improving the environment.

Communities will host a range of recycling activities, along with educational seminars as a way to celebrate this nationally-recognized day. As this is a national event, you can get involved with America Recycles Day no matter where you are based.

To get an idea of what will be happening this upcoming America Recycles Day, we need to take a look at past events. 

For example, for the 2019 America Recycles Day, which was focused on increasing the recycling rate, Keep Pennsylvania Beautiful hosted a Litter Summit. During this summit, local attendees were able to connect with experts in the field to learn about how litter impacts the environment, as well as learn new ways to recycle that could benefit local communities.

In the same year, Keep Nashville Beautiful reported record numbers for their recycling efforts. Keep Nashville Beautiful, which is an unofficial chapter of Keep America Beautiful, hosts a year-long recycling program as they have a recycling bin in select grocery stores.

These recycling bins are used all year round and collect paper products, such as magazines or newspapers. Following the 2019 America Recycles Day, Keep Nashville Beautiful reported record numbers for their recycling program, which had recycled more than 425,000 tons of paper at the time.

How Can I Recycle Better?

America Recycles Day aims to educate local communities across the country on better ways to recycle. As so much waste is generated every day across the country, an easy way to reduce our impact on the environment is to make sure as much trash as possible is being recycled.

Ahead of America Recycles Day, you may be considering how you can improve your habits for the betterment of your local community and environment. Although this is a nationally-recognized day for recycling, you should not save your efforts for just one day of the year.

Recycling is something that we can partake in every day, and it is this continued effort that will have the most impact.

If you are looking to be more eco-friendly and reduce your impact on the world around you, then you should consider improving the way you recycle. KAB has lots of resources that can help with this, but there are also some ways you can start alone. 

Recycling requires consideration, and you may have to spend more time with your trash than you do now. Considering what is being thrown in the trashcan, what can be used again, and what is widely recycled in your area is a good place to start if you want to be better at recycling.

 

11 Storage Solutions For Small Bathrooms

If you have a small main bathroom, then you will be aware of how difficult it can be to keep things organized. With such a small blueprint, there is usually no available space for storage solutions which can make your bathroom appear untidy at all times.

As the whole family uses the bathroom, this space is likely full of various bathing products, cleaning supplies, and additional products that simply have no space to go.

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Luckily, there are some options for you. Not all storage solutions have to take up a lot of space, and we are going to share the best space-saving storage options that can be used in even the smallest bathrooms.

Six Bathroom Remodels For Small Bathrooms

If you are dealing with a small bathroom blueprint, then nothing you can buy at the store is going to improve this. Instead, there are some remodels that will need to take place, and these are the top six options for small bathrooms:

  • Install A Corner Sink

You can occupy space that isn’t being used and therefore save the main floor space by installing a corner sink instead of your traditional vanity.

  • Swap The Bathtub For A Shower

A bathtub takes up a large portion of your bathroom, so if you are struggling with space, this should be the first thing to go. 

A shower can be a much better option for small bathrooms, and there are several options, including a curved corner shower that will make use of unused space or a walk-in shower for a seamless addition.

  • Extended Counter Over Toilet

If your sink and vanity are located next to the toilet, you can easily extend the storage space you currently have by adding a counter between the two.

With an extended counter over the back of the toilet, you will now have more space at the vanity without having to change too much about the bathroom. This can be one of the cheaper bathroom remodels and an easy one to DIY, yet still highly effective.

If this is a good option for you, make sure to leave enough space at the back of the toilet so you can lift away the lid if needed.

  • Install Shelves Between Studs

You can use the existing space in your bathroom to install recessed shelves, which can be a great storage solution. Recessed shelves, also called a wall niche, are built-in shelves which are the same width as the alcoves or studs in your bathroom.

This will be done by cutting a cavity into the drywall and building a custom shelving unit to fit this space. This way, you can have shelving to keep products organized without taking up too much space in the bathroom.

  • Remove The Swinging Shower Door

If you already have a shower in your bathroom, you can easily save space by replacing the door

Showers with a swinging door take up a lot of room, but this can be easily resolved by removing it. Replace the swinging door with a sliding option or create a wet room for more space in the bathroom.

  • Choose A Pocket Door

Likewise, replacing your traditional bathroom door with a sliding option can be a great way to save space.

Top Five Storage Solutions For Small Bathrooms

As well as these remodeling ideas, there are also some storage options for your small bathroom that you should consider.

  • Choose A Vanity With Storage

Your furniture may be misused in the bathroom as these can be a great storage solution. Most bathrooms will have a vanity of some kind or, at the very least, space for one under the sink. 

When choosing furniture for this space, make sure to choose a vanity that has storage, such as a cabinet or shelving.

  • Replace Your Mirror With A Medicine Cabinet

You will need a mirror in the bathroom, but similar to the furniture you choose for the bathroom, a mirror can also be a useful storage area with some consideration.

Instead of a traditional, flat mirror, you should opt for a medicine cabinet with mirrored doors as this will offer additional storage for smaller products and help keep the vanity clear.

  • Install A Shelf Over The Door

When you are working in a small bathroom, you will need to think outside of the box to find the best storage solutions. This is why a shelf over the bathroom door can be a great option, but it requires you to look up and not just around the bathroom for available space.

A small shelf above the bathroom door can be used for items that are not required every day but are still needed in the bathroom, such as guest towels or decorations.

  • Hang Towel Racks Over The Door

Using the door is a great way to save space in the bathroom as this is something that has to be included in the room, so it might as well be useful.

Instead of occupying the small amount of wall space that you have available in the bathroom, use the door to hang towel racks. On the door, you can hang two or three towel racks vertically.

  • Use Space Over The Toilet

This can be easily done by adding a cabinet or small shelving unit over the toilet where you can keep essentials. 

 

Cheap Garage Storage Ideas To Keep Organized

In most cases, the garage becomes a storage space instead of a home for our vehicles. While there is nothing wrong with this, chances are if you are using the garage as a storage space, it is not an organized area of the home.

Finding what you need when you need it can be difficult when your garage is full of random items you have moved from your home in a bid to keep things tidy.

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Organizing the garage might seem like a large task, and with that, an expensive one, but some cheap storage solutions can make things much easier for you. In this guide, we are sharing some of the best and cheapest storage solutions for your garage that can help keep you organized.

Top 5 Storage Solutions For The Garage

If you are working with a small budget, you can still keep the garage organized as there are some inexpensive yet highly effective storage solutions to consider, such as:

  • DIY Garage Shelves

One of the best ways to keep the garage organized is to keep as many items off the floor as possible. An easy way to do this is by adding shelves to the garage, and you can DIY these if you have some experience.

It can cost thousands of dollars to have a professional develop custom garage shelving, but you can do a good job yourself for a smaller budget. Creating open shelving for the garage is a great way to keep organized as it allows you to see everything you have and access them easily, without taking up floor space.

With some skills, you can DIY garage shelves for between $150 to $350, depending on the kind of materials you get and the shelves you choose to build. 

  • DIY Garage Cabinets

If you find that you have too much clutter in the garage, then cabinets might be a better option, and you can make them yourself. 

Cabinets can be another great way to keep organized, but instead of having items on display, they will be out of sight, which can make the garage look neater. You should consider the width of cabinets carefully before building and before installing them into the garage as it can impact where you will park your car.

There are various blueprints and tutorials online that you can follow to build cabinets for any space, including the garage. This task is better for advanced DIYers and can cost between $100 and $500, depending on how much work is involved.

  • A Pegboard Wall

A pegboard wall is one of the easiest DIYs for your garage, and it can be highly effective for the organization of tools. 

If you have exposed studs in the garage, a pegboard is even easier to install, meaning this is a storage solution for DIYers of all skillsets. You can also do this without exposed studs and secure the pegboard onto the walls another way.

A pegboard makes it easy to hang and store tools, ensuring you can always have easy access to whatever you need when you need it. You can keep track of what tools are being used and make sure you have everything you need in the garage with a pegboard.

This is a customizable storage solution, making it one of the best options out there. It is also one of the cheapest storage solutions, costing an average of $10 per 2-foot by 4-foot panel.

  • DIY Overhead Shelving

If open shelving throughout the garage is not the best solution for you, this does not mean that shelving is not a great option overall. Instead, you could opt for overhead shelving.

You will likely have more storage space in your garage than you realize, but you may be looking in the wrong place. Instead of looking around, look up and see how much space you will have for overhead shelving in the garage.

This is a great option for those on a budget, and it can work for all kinds of garages. Depending on how much storage space you have in the garage, you can even install overhead shelving over the garage door, which offers more space to store items, tools, and other essentials.

Like the other DIY tasks in this article, overhead shelving can be customized to suit your needs. It is one of the cheapest DIY projects, costing an average of between $50 to $70.

  • Install A Slatwall

A Slatwall is a similar DIY option to the pegboard as it allows you to hang items onto the walls instead of having them on the floor. 

This DIY project may be better than a pegboard as it is sturdier and relies on movable hooks on the walls so it can be completely customizable even after it has been installed. You can install a Slatwall onto exposed studs or drywall, making it suitable for all kinds of garages.

As it is customizable, there are many ways you can use a Slatwall for storage in the garage. You can hook tools, baskets, shelves, and other accessories onto the Slatwall for easy storage. 

With this customization, you can keep yourself organized at all times and make it easier to find whatever you need.

This is an easy DIY project suitable for beginners, with an average cost of $50 to $60 per 2-foot by 4-foot panel.

 

Tearing Down Your Wooden Deck

A wooden deck is a great addition to any home, but it will not last forever. Most decks eventually break down, even if it has been maintained properly for over four decades, and there will always be situations where it is much easier to simply take it down yourself.

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But how do you handle it, and how complex can it become? Here are some things to consider if you are getting ready to take down the deck – either on your own or through third-party contractors.

Preparing the Deck

Taking down a deck can seem very simple on paper, but it is actually quite a hard process. Not only can you easily underestimate how long it might take, but not having a proper plan will make it a lot more complicated.

Clear the Deck

Always remove anything that is being kept on the deck before you try to take it down. Even if you are just preparing the deck and getting your tools ready, it is important to clear it and make sure that there is not any unnecessary weight holding it down.

This includes furniture, decorations, and especially anything breakable. Find a safe place to store important items and move them all away from the deck, no matter how light they might be.

Grab your Tools

Decks can be quite tough to take down, so you will need good tools to handle this. A deck is quite a large job, so make sure to bring the best equipment you can get – if you do not own all of the tools that you need, then you might want to consider renting some from a local hardware store to make things easier (and cheaper).

Some key tools that you might want include:

  • A pry bar/crowbar.
  • A set of screwdrivers.
  • A hammer.
  • A drill.
  • A sledgehammer or other heavy-duty breaking tool.
  • A reciprocating saw for sawing apart wooden planks.
  • A shovel to dig up supports and move the earth.

It also helps to have protective equipment, such as work gloves and safety glasses, so that you do not end up hurting yourself while trying to take the deck apart. The more protected you are, the better.

Taking Down the Deck

Decks are often made from the bottom upwards, meaning that you have to follow the same kind of technique for taking one apart. Unless you are hoping to simply smash it up yourself, you will want to deconstruct it step by step, following the order of assembly in reverse.

This is not always easy since most decks are actually quite complex, and you will not usually have the original instructions in any form. If this is not an option, then using the right tools for the right job can still make it much simpler.

Remove Handrails

Handrails are always going to be one of the first things that you should remove since they are mostly just there as an extra set of components. Start at one end of the deck and take away the top railings first, using screwdrivers or hammers as necessary, depending on how they are held together.

Then, start working on the rest of the railings, taking them apart piece by piece. Remember to keep the nails and scraps in a container if you plan to use them again, especially if they are not bent or damaged. They could be useful.

Remove the Boards

Removing the boards on the deck should be your next step since they are usually in the way of you taking the frame apart. Try to pry them up where you can, removing the screws where possible. If you can’t pull two away from one another, or the wood is too damaged to remove normally, then you might have to rely on your saw instead.

Either way, pull up the boards. If you can avoid damaging them and they are not rotten, then you could potentially re-use them somewhere else.

Remove the Frame

The frame of the deck is one of the more important parts to remove since it is often connected directly to your home. You can cut it apart using your saw if it is not going to come away normally, but make sure that the weight is not being pushed onto your house (or dragging at the wall).

Be very careful when taking the frame apart since the entire structure could be deceptively heavy. You also want to remove the joists that are holding it in place or any other supports that might topple over and damage something (or hurt someone).

Clean up the Debris

There can be a lot of debris leftover from tearing down your deck – hanger boards, support posts, and even sets of steps. Taking these down can be just as important as the rest of the structure, but you should always leave these till last since they are just a minor part of the whole deck.

Remember that these can be small additions that still use quite a lot of material. Stairs are often deceptively material-heavy, so there might be a lot of extra planks left over if you only considered the main deck. This is even more important if there are a lot of nails or sharp points that might hurt you.

If you are struggling to manage everything that is leftover from the project, then consider one of our dumpster rental options. These can make everything a lot easier and help you get the job done faster, as well as speed up the disposal of the scrap or debris that you can’t re-use.

Setting Up Your Home Office

During the current climate of working from home, it is becoming increasingly important to have the correct home office setup. With long-term working from home becoming a reality, at least part of the week, it is important for your health to have a home office. 

The change to working practices often comes with no additional financial support from your employer. We are here to help you create an effective home office while spending no more than strictly necessary unless you want to, of course. 

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If you are feeling overwhelmed at the thought of designing your home office, we are here to help. Our ideas and things to consider can help you to make a productive start. 

Decision Time

The first thing to decide is where your home office is going to be located. If you already have an empty/spare room, this may be an easy decision. However, if you do not have a space in mind, there are certain things to consider when choosing the room. 

You should always consider lighting when choosing the room that will become your home office. If the room is going to have bright light all day while working on a computer screen, this can cause additional eye strain or headaches. Similarly, if the room has little natural light and so is gloomy all day meaning you need artificial light, this can be uncomfortable for long periods and costly too. 

We also recommend a room without too many distractions. A room with a television can be tempting to leave it on when you start work or after lunch. Also, a room with street-facing windows can lead to lost time watching the world go by. 

If you have other people working from home or a family that will be home for part of your working hours, we recommend the room be as far away from them as possible. This may mean having your home office on the second floor of your home, so there are fewer distractions. This will also make you less accessible for children who may wish to play while you are working. If you do not have a spare room, you could instead use attic or basement space, providing they are finished conversions, and it is safe to do so. 

Getting the Room Ready

Once you have decided which room you are going to designate as your home office, it is time to get the room ready to work in. If you have chosen a room that already had items in, you may need to find new spaces for them before moving in office furniture. We advise, rather than moving everything straight away, that you take this opportunity to declutter and donate anything you no longer need. 

If your room now has space to move in the furniture, you will need a minimum of: 

  • A desk
  • An office chair
  • Storage
  • Computer equipment necessary to your job role

You should ensure that each item of furniture is fit for the purpose you need it for. The desk should be big enough for you to work without being so big that it will become cluttered. You should ensure that the chair is ergonomic to provide the correct support for sitting all day. If you are not required to store any documents for work, you may find a bookshelf more effective and also practical. However, if you need to store anything confidential while working in your home office, there are a variety of lockable filing cabinets available. 

We recommend trying to use furniture that matches the décor in your home and the room already if possible. Also, repurpose furniture you already have or include furniture you can use for other things. A bookshelf for work that you can also use for personal books is effective. 

If you do not have a high budget, you can also recycle furniture for your home office, either furniture already in your home or from online recycling or reselling sites. Some of the selling sites online have excellent deals, and you can always refinish or paint wooden furniture to help it match your décor. 

Setup for Success

Now that you have all of your furniture and a room to put it all into, it is time to get the layout right. When deciding where in the room your desk will go, it is best to check screen glare before you move anything in. The right lighting is so important when working on computers, so ensure that there is no glare from either the electrical or natural light sources.

Also, you should ensure your room stays organized throughout the day. Desk drawers and regular filing are important for this. Also, clearing your desk of any unnecessary clutter at the end of each day, as you would in the office, is important. It is easy to become distracted when working from home and leaving items on your desk when you close the door each evening. Not getting into this as a habit is helpful from day one. Make a point to clear your desk at each screen break, so you have a functional workspace. 

Add decoration or personal touches, so the office feels less sparse and more welcoming. This is especially important if you have clients who will be visiting the office. Ensuring that it is clean and welcoming with areas to sit with clients is a must. 

Ensure that you have enough office supplies, keeping the receipts so you do not run out. Having adequate office supplies will make your day job so much easier. Practical storage places will help the room to remain uncluttered. 

When Should You Replace Windows and Doors?

The windows and doors used in your home are not just to block off rooms – they are a security tool, a source of privacy, and a major part of how your entire home looks. Not only are they important, but they can be damaged, worn down, or just out of date.

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However, knowing when to replace your windows and doors can be important. Not only are they often hard to replace easily, but they can be a big expense and something that takes quite a bit of effort to manage.

How often should you replace them?

Replacing your doors and windows is a very rare project, and many homes can go for decades without needing to change them around. However, there can be some common signs that something is wrong or that your doors and windows are no longer suitable for use in your home.

Remember that no two homes are the same. One house might be completely fine with keeping the same door for years, while another home might have been built with quite a flimsy door that might pose a security risk. Evaluating your own home’s current condition is a major part of deciding what you need to replace.

How to tell if an external door needs replaced

Your front and back doors are the first lines of defense when it comes to both safety and privacy, so having a reliable and well-made door can be invaluable.

Poor Curb Appeal

Curb appeal can be important. Not only does it change how your home looks and how people see it, but it can have an impact on the value of your home and the amount of money that it is worth.

This might not bother you personally, but it can quickly become a major factor to consider when you are trying to sell your home. Doors in a state of extreme disrepair might even draw complaints from other people in the neighborhood.

Cracked Materials

Cracked doors can often be the result of poor protection against bad weather. However, this cracking is not just visual – it can also lead to major issues with the door not being safe, getting damaged easily, or simply becoming unreliable.

If the door itself is clearly warped or broken in multiple ways, then it is often a good idea to replace it instead of trying to fix it. Door repairs can be very costly and are often a waste of time and resources compared to just buying and installing a new one.

Drafts

A draft can sometimes be a good sign that something is wrong with the door, especially if a chill is getting in during fairly mild weather. Gaps between the door and the frame are a common problem, but they can get worse over time and might eventually become impossible to repair.

This also means that you will be paying more for heating, as well as any short-term repairs or ‘patches’ that you might be using to keep the heat trapped inside. It is better to just replace it outright.

You’re Not Safe

If you do not feel safe, then be sure to replace your door as soon as you can. Whether it is a fear of burglars or concerns about something far more personal, it is important to make sure that you feel safe and secure in your own home.

While you could upgrade to a brand new high-security door, or something designed to prevent forced entry, this depends entirely on what you want. Some people feel more comfortable having a better and less-damaged-looking door, even if it is not necessarily any more resistant to anything major.

How to tell if a window needs to be replaced?

Windows are equally as important as doors, and a bad or damaged window can become a huge hassle in your home. However, identifying when they are damaged is not always as easy as you might think.

Increased Energy Bills

If your windows are not trapping heat in properly, then your energy bills can skyrocket. Always keep an eye out for sudden changes in heating costs since that might indicate that something is wrong with your windows (or their insulation).

Stuck Windows

If your window is completely stuck or is not opening and closing smoothly, then something could be wrong with the internal mechanism. Even if it is just dust or rust, it can become a major security risk, so replacing it can be the cheapest solution.

The Lock is Broken

If a locking mechanism is completely broken and will not ever close (or open), then replacing the window or mechanism should be a priority. If you are not careful, these could prove to be massive security and safety risks, things that could put you in danger if something goes wrong.

A lock that is jammed shut is more secure than one that is jammed open, but this can also be a problem if you need to use it as an emergency escape route in the event of a fire. If it is the only window in the room, then it may actually make the room legally unsafe to use for certain things.

Soundproofing Issues

Soundproofing is another important factor to consider when looking at your windows. If a window can’t block sound, then it could become a privacy risk and could also lead to noise pollution from the outside world.

Soundproofing also hides the noises inside your home, meaning that you are not going to be overheard if you have the windows closed. This is a major part of your personal privacy and can also be a useful security measure.

 

How to Rent from a Dumpster Company

Dumpster rentals are an amazing option for all kinds of situations, and we aim for ours to have a major impact on any project that they are rented for. However, knowing how to rent one properly can be important, especially if you will need one for a short-notice project.

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Here are some things to consider before you jump right into a dumpster rental. The more you know, the easier it becomes to arrange a rental that works for you.

Dumpster Rental Type

Not all dumpsters are meant for all of the same things. Sometimes a dumpster rental has a particular focus, such as being meant exclusively for recyclable materials, building waste, wood, natural waste like branches and leaves, or even landscaping debris. You want the right dumpster rental for the job.

Renting a specific kind of dumpster can be a lot cheaper (and more reliable) than trying to get a general-purpose option. However, you also need to know what kind of debris or waste you will be dealing with, so try to think ahead.

There will also be certain materials that you simply can’t throw away in a dumpster, no matter how little you have. Hazardous or flammable materials are two common examples since both have actual danger associated with them and can be hard to workaround.

Weight and Capacity Limits

Over-filling a dumpster is always a bad idea, so you need to understand the limits being placed on the rental. Getting a dumpster that is too large is always better than having one which is too small since exceeding weight and capacity limits can land you with extra fines.

These fines are because each dumpster is meant for a certain kind of disposal. A dumpster that is over-filled might be too heavy to move or so overloaded that the contents can’t easily be processed and disposed of (or recycled).

Exceeding these limits will usually lead to a fine, so it is important to consider how much you might be throwing away. A small dumpster might work for dumping a lot of household waste, but scaling up to something like a complete home renovation would require much higher limits.

Space

Dumpsters need to be delivered on-site, and that means that you want to have space available for them when they arrive. Clearing a space ahead of the delivery (and ideally marking a delivery spot) can make a massive difference and help you get the dumpster in an ideal location.

Once a dumpster is placed down, you usually can’t move it on your own, meaning that you want it to be in the right place at the right time. For example, you might decide that having it right next to the building would let you drop scrap materials right out of the window.

However, you also want to mark out a space that will not interfere with your normal routine. Having a dumpster on your driveway can be great, but if you need to park there, then it can create even more problems – especially if it forces you to drive over your own garden to get to work.

Space can also be important if you live in any kind of shared area since you do not want your dumpster to be pushing onto somebody else’s property or getting in the way of areas that have to stay clear. Think carefully about your chosen delivery spot.

Rental Terms

Each rental is different since every client needs something unique or specific. This means that the terms of the rental depend on the clients and are tailored to what they want.

For example, you might have specific requirements for the delivery and pick-up times, as well as the way that the dumpster is delivered. There might also be specific terms agreed on about what happens if you need to keep the dumpster a day later than the rental period.

Knowing what you need can be very important since it helps you create defined terms and a solid rental plan. This can matter a lot when you are trying to work around a tight schedule or get a certain kind of work done, so it is worth coming up with a general plan as soon as possible.

Rental Length

The length of your rental needs to match the amount of time you will spend on the project. You want to have a dumpster available right up until the very end just so you do not get stuck with any materials that you will have to dispose of yourself anyway.

Remember that not all rentals are limited to just one dumpster. Some people hire multiple smaller dumpsters for long projects, rotating them in and out so that they always have an empty dumpster available. On the other hand, some larger projects are best handled with a single big dumpster that can be picked up at the end of the rental period, rather than multiple dumpsters.

There is not a single best way to plan a rental like this, especially if you do not know exactly when the work will be done. However, you can always get in touch with the rental team themselves to help discuss your options.

We offer a wide range of rental choices and can help tailor them to your needs, all while making sure that you get exactly what you want for your upcoming project. Dumpsters are incredibly versatile, and they can become a valuable tool to have during major projects or serious DIY work.

Removing Laminate Flooring

Laminate can be a lost-cost and low-maintenance option for people who want authentic-looking hardwood flooring, with only one or two small drawbacks compared to the real thing. However, one of these drawbacks – the fact that it can wear out faster – can make replacement flooring necessary.

While it is easy enough to install brand new laminate flooring, the harder part can be removing the laminate flooring that you have already got installed. Here are some things to consider before you try to brute-force the project.

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When should I remove laminate flooring?

Most laminate will last somewhere between fifteen to twenty-five years if it gets used regularly, or as little as ten years with a lot of foot traffic. Over time, you can expect to see a lot of cracking, peeling, and other kinds of damage.

Removing the flooring at the right time is important since you do not want to leave it too early or too late. The removal process could damage potentially useful patches of laminate flooring, but it may also become harder to remove safely if it is very cracked and broken.

Gathering your Tools

There are a few core tools that you will want if you are planning to pull up a laminate floor.

  • A pry bar/crowbar
  • Pliers
  • A mallet and/or hammer
  • A dust mask and safety glasses to protect you from potential risks
  • Work gloves, ideally ones that give you a decent grip on your tools

Depending on what your subfloor is made from, you might also want a mop, floor scraper, heat gun, or orbital sander. The floor scraper is perfect for concrete subfloors, while the orbital sander works well with wood.

Do not hesitate to rent some of these tools yourself if you do not have them. This can cut down on the total cost of the project.

Removing the Flooring

Removing your laminate flooring can seem like a daunting project at first, but it is actually quite simple. You just need to make sure that you are fully prepared and understand what kind of steps you will have to take.

Remove the Furniture

Always take all of the furniture out of your room. It is much easier to work on pulling up the floor when there is nothing in your way, so try to clear the space as much as possible. 

If you are going to remove the laminate flooring from the entire room, then you can also consider prying baseboards off the wall to save time. You will want to be careful if you are planning to replace them later on, though.

Soften the Glue

Before you do anything else, it is a good idea to try and mop the floor first. This can help loosen and soften the glue that holds the planks down – which you can follow up with your heat gun, gradually melting the glue around the edges of the flooring.

You should also remove transition pieces, the strips that are often used in doorways or spaces that connect one room to another. You can usually get them out with your pry bar, giving you an easy way to start pulling up the planks.

Remove the Floor Strips

After that, you simply have to start removing the flooring itself. Start at a corner or against a wall, using the existing gap there to get the pry bar underneath. If there is resistance, then you can gently hammer the bar into place, then twist it upwards to loosen the board.

If a board is still glued down, then you need to apply heat. The glue will eventually melt, but you will not always know where most of the glue is, so you will have to try and guess based on how the boards are getting stuck.

It is possible that your flooring might be installed over other flooring types. If you bought the house with the laminate already installed, then you have no idea what is underneath – be careful since older homes could have asbestos in the lower flooring.

Remove the Adhesive

There will usually still be some glue left behind after you remove the individual strips of laminate flooring. Once you have removed the floor, you will have a lot of that adhesive still lingering around, and you often want to remove it before you try to replace the floor itself.

Laminate attached to a wood subfloor can easily be cleared using an orbital sander. Remember to wear your mask and glasses since this can help you avoid the dust and dirt that might be thrown up while sanding.

Laminate flooring that was placed on a concrete subfloor can have a lot of residue lingering there too. You can use the floor scraper to remove it, along with any other debris that might be stuck there – just be sure to replace the blade if it gets dull.

Disposal

A lot of the flooring that you pull up can be permanently damaged, meaning that you will just have to throw it away. If the laminate was already damaged anyway, then you might as well dispose of anything that you can’t re-use.

Throwing away a lot of flooring can be tough, especially if the laminate is heavy and still has a lot of adhesives sticking it all together. Even if you can fit it all into your car, you never know if there might still be hazardous materials on the underside of the laminate pieces.

Consider getting one of our dumpster rentals to make the process a lot easier – you do not need to worry about disposing of each piece yourself and instead can focus on the rest of the renovations or home improvement jobs you had in mind.

Moving Into a New Home

Making the decision to move into a new home can be as exciting as it is overwhelming. When moving home, it can be easy to concentrate solely on the home you are leaving. However, when moving home, we have found that spending time completing some tasks in your new home is much easier when it is uninhabited. 

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Below are a few ideas for tasks to complete before you move in the first box, which will definitely make your life easier in the long run. 

Cleaning

Before moving into a property, we like to make sure it is deep cleaned and ready to be lived in. This includes going room to room and vacuuming, then shampooing the carpets. Even though a carpet can look clean, it is definitely best to get a carpet cleaner. You can either do this yourself or hire someone to do it for you. Shampooing the carpets ensures as much dirt and dust as humanly possible is removed from the carpet. Doing this while there is no furniture allows you to clean every inch of the room and let it dry before moving in. 

We also dust, clean, and polish every piece of woodwork in the house, from baseboards to mantelpieces. Depending on the size of the house, this can be a relatively quick job. We recommend working systematically from room to room. 

We recommend cleaning the inside of any cupboards, both in the kitchen and any inbuilt storage in other rooms. If you are keeping the appliances such as fridges or washing machines, ensure that you clean them fully with water and vinegar. This combination will clean not only residues and dirt but also remove any unwanted odors. 

If you are not replacing toilet seats and lightbulbs, we recommend you clean them both thoroughly too. 

If you are moving to a new area, we advise you to either hire a company to complete the cleaning tasks for you or you head over a few days early to get the house clean to move in.

Home Security

We always advise changing the locks of any new home you buy, although you are given the ‘only’ keys, you cannot be certain of this. If you know how to do this yourself, it is a quick trip to the hardware store and an updated lock on all external doors. We also recommend resetting and changing all security codes relevant to your home and any outbuildings. 

It is best to ensure all smoke detectors have new batteries in and are in good working order. This should always be done before you move in to ensure your home is safe in the event of a fire. If there are any questions about the working order of the smoke detectors, get them checked immediately. 

Ensure you know where the circuit breaker is. There is nothing worse than a power outage and you stumbling around in the dark to find this for the first time. Do the same with your shut-off valves too. 

Renovations

Some renovation projects are much easier without people or furniture too. So, we recommend making the most of the time before you move into your home to get as many renovation projects completed as you can. 

This can include projects like remodeling a kitchen or bathroom, as not having those projects being completed with a houseful of people is so much easier. Whether you are completing renovations yourself or hiring a contractor, having them planned out before you move will make them much quicker to complete. 

We always make a list before moving home of which projects have to be completed in the early days of being in the house. We then try to ensure that as many of them as possible are complete before the moving date. Not having to live in a house where extensive work is being completed is so much more calming. 

Also, try to complete any projects that will be easier without other furniture in the house. Tasks like updating the floors are a much more arduous task when you are having to move out a roomful of furniture to complete it. 

Decorating is another task that is so much easier if you do not have furniture in your way. Especially if you are planning to lay new flooring or carpets. Painting or hanging new wallpaper over the old flooring is much less risky than possible damage to new flooring. 

Roof repairs are also on our list of must-dos before you move in. While easy to complete when living in the house, if you have to, it is so much more effective to do before you move. We advise you to complete a thorough inspection of your roof to check for leaks and loose tiles and have them fixed before you move in any of your belongings. Water damage to keepsakes and mementos can be devastating so minimizing the risk of this before you move in is essential. 

 

If you are planning any renovations, it should go without saying that you can leave the cleaning of those rooms until after the projects have been completed. However, it is also sometimes best to leave other rooms until you are finished renovating too. This is because larger projects can cause dust and dirt in other rooms. But also, there is always the chance that as you update one room, you may feel like updating others. For this reason, we recommend you leave yourself some time between needing to move into your new home and needing to vacate your old one to get all of the work completed. 

Deep Cleaning Your Home

Deep cleaning is a powerful part of your home-cleaning arsenal and something that you should never hesitate to rely on when you need it. Good deep cleaning work can solve a lot of problems, but knowing how to use it well can be important.

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But when is deep cleaning most useful, and what does it actually entail? Whether you are doing it yourself or getting an outside company to handle it for you, you should be aware of the benefits (and limits) of a good deep cleaning project.

When should you deep clean your house?

A lot of people who rely on deep cleaning will handle it at least three or four times a year, more if their home has any specific rooms that might get dirty often.

Of course, this all depends on how deep the cleaning will actually be. For some people, deep cleaning just means cleaning up all of the carpets, sheets, and rugs. For others, it could be a major amount of cleaning that is meant to remove serious hazards from the home.

Cleaning Most Rooms

Most rooms have a lot of standard things you can do to clean them. A lot of these are very simple, but you will want to adapt what you do to match each room’s shape and scale.

  • Clean floors. Mop tile floors and brush or vacuum carpet floors, making sure that you do not use any cleaning substances that might damage the materials.
  • Wipe away stains on the walls, including anything that might be left over from posters or other decorations that have been stuck up on the wall.
  • Wash windows properly. It takes a bit of effort to remove stains on the glass, but the end result is worth it.

Cleaning Your Kitchen

The kitchen can require a lot of cleaning and maintenance to keep it tidy, especially if it is used for cooking major meals on a regular basis. Cleaning it properly involves more than just washing the tile floors and making sure that counters are clear, though.

  • Clean the refrigerator. Even if you do not plan to wipe down the sides or shelves, it can be important to take stock of what is in your fridge so that you can throw away any expired or unusable food.
  • Clean the oven, stovetops, and microwave. No matter how often you use all of them, it can be important to make sure that they are clean and safe to use, especially if you have been cooking a range of different foods there.
  • Wipe down countertops. It is often a good idea to disinfect them so that there are not any traces of raw meat or other ingredients. This also helps get rid of stains and other things that might taint the surface.
  • Clear out your garbage disposal, as well as any bins or trash cans that you have inside your kitchen. Even if they do not need to be clean, it can help you reduce the smell in your kitchen, which could lead to fewer flies and pests.
  • Wash the dishwasher by running it on empty. This means that all of the cleaning happens to the washer itself, getting rid of stains and contaminants. Alternatively, you can always clean it yourself if you do not want to waste and cleaning fluids.

Cleaning the Bathroom

The bathroom is another problem area that is high-maintenance and high traffic, meaning that you will want to be very thorough when you are working on cleaning it up.

  • Deep-clean the toilet with properly prepared brushes and soaps, making sure to flush it afterward so that nothing lingers against the bowl for too long. You should also dry your toilet brush to prevent mold from growing, especially if it is used frequently.
  • Wash all of your towels and swap them out for fresh ones even if they seem completely fine. Rotating them helps keep them cleaner for longer.
  • Wipe down surfaces like mirrors or tiles, especially in areas that people are likely to touch. This can also include light fixtures, as well as buttons or cords that control things like the room’s lighting or the shower.
  • Wipe doorknobs. The doorknobs (either for the room or used for a walk-in shower) are a very common place to find all kinds of germs and bacteria, so it is extremely important that you clean them regularly, even if you live alone.
  • Scrub your bath and sink, as well as the shower walls. These are major parts of the bathroom and should not be glossed over.

Cleaning Other Rooms

A lot of the ideas that apply to core areas of your home (like the kitchen and bathroom) work for other places too. No matter which room you are trying to deep clean, you need to consider which areas are the most used and the most likely to carry germs or other risks.

For example, a bedroom should have the sheets changed often, while you might want to wipe down tables in living rooms. Deep cleaning might not be too serious for certain spaces, but it is still important to prioritize the right jobs for each room that you are cleaning.

Above all else, though, you should focus on cleaning things that do not necessarily look unclean. Everybody knows to clean a toilet, but many people forget that door handles, chair armrests, or even cupboard doors can all be full of germs, despite looking completely fine to the naked eye.

Remember that you can also throw away furniture or items that you can’t clean, especially if they are too dirty or damaged and should just be replaced. One of our dumpster rental options can make it easy to throw away bags of trash or old, broken appliances.

Decluttering with Sentimental Items

Items with sentimental value can be one of the hardest things to get rid of. We all have at least a few things that we never want to lose, but some of us might go a step further, keeping things that are not even useful or necessary.

If you keep too many emotional tethers, then you will eventually run out of room – and place to store new things. Keeping things purely because you feel obligated to is an easy way to clutter up your home, especially if you are not actively displaying them or doing anything with them.

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Sorting Your Sentimental Clutter

It is important to remember that sentimental items are not bad. You do not want to throw something away just because it is clutter, so you need to spend some time sorting through everything that you might want to get rid of.

Make sure that you have some kind of box or storage space to put all of your ‘keep’ items, as well as an easy way to put all of the ‘do not keep’ items aside. This could be cardboard boxes, sides of the room, spaces on a bed, or even just different rooms entirely.

It also helps to have some kind of goal. Know what you are trying to do: are you wanting to declutter your home, or is it also your attempt to move on from some emotional ties that you no longer want? Knowing what you are aiming for can help you stay motivated if you are dealing with a lot of very sentimental items.

Building a Keep Pile

Your ‘keep pile’ should be the things that you want to keep in your home – anything that is too important, valuable, or simply useful to throw away. Ideally, this should end up being the smaller pile between the two since you want to shift as much clutter as possible.

Putting something in the keep pile (or box, or space) should be a very careful decision since it is easy to decide that you want to keep everything anyway. For example:

  • What makes the items unique or significant? Do you still remember the meaning that it has? Things that can’t be replaced are the best ones to keep since they are inherently special.
  • Does the item have a positive impact on you? If something helps keep you motivated or gets you through tough situations, then keeping it on display can be really important.
  • Do you want it? If there is something that you genuinely want and do not feel like you can stand to throw it away, then keep it – but do not let yourself slip into a hoarder mentality.
  • Can you use the item properly? If you have something old that does not really function or is not appropriate to display, then there might not be any reason to keep it since it will just end up in a box or closet somewhere.
  • Where is the item? If you have always kept it out of the way, to the point that you do not even look at it yourself, then you might as well get rid of it. If something is prominently on display, though, then it might be worth keeping.

Always keep things that have a major positive impact on your life, especially if they matter for multiple sentimental reasons. You want to refine your pile to the perfect combination of items: the things that you would never give up or sell.

Your goal is to clear up clutter, so do not just throw everything into this pile. Look at their values objectively and figure out which items are more important than others, then get rid of the things that are not actually that valuable to you.

Building a Do Not Keep Pile

Your ‘do not keep pile’ is exactly what you would expect: a pile of things to get rid of, give away, or otherwise remove from your home. These are the clutter items, the things that are not worth keeping around even if they have sentimental value to you.

It can be hard to make a conscious decision to throw something away, so it is a good idea to look at each item as part of a whole rather than a single thing. For example:

  • Are the memories associated with the item positive ones, or ones that you have begun to feel sour over? Sometimes sentimental items can become “out of date” as we grow.
  • Do you associate the items with any negative emotions, including things like wishing that you could go back and make different decisions? If so, it might be having a bad impact on you.
  • Does another item already call back to the same sentimental moments or meanings? If you have a painting made by a deceased family member, then you might not need their old chair or a stack of their favorite books, especially not if they are getting in the way.
  • Is keeping the item practical? Some possession requires extra work to maintain or protect, such as fragile glass decorations needing to be kept safe in a place where they can’t get damaged – which is not ideal in a smaller home.
  • Are you going to pass the item along? If you are not planning to use something as an heirloom, then the only thing keeping it in your home is your own connection to it.
  • Can you keep them in another form, such as a photograph or digital image? This can be a nice alternative to keeping some larger items that are not practical for your home.

Repairing Your Vinyl Siding

Vinyl siding can make a massive difference to how the outside of your home looks and feels, but there is always a chance that it can get worn down or damaged. This damage does not just harm your home’s visual appeal, but it can actually cause more cases of moisture or insect damage in the long term.

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Spotting Damage

Repairing vinyl siding damage seems tough at first, but there are multiple ways to handle the situation. Of course, you still need to identify the damage before you can do anything about it.

Vinyl can be damaged in numerous different ways, and not all of the signs are immediately clear. In some cases, vinyl might begin to slowly loosen or crack as some longer-term damage takes hold, meaning that it will not be immediately obvious if you are just glancing at the side walls.

Chips, dents, cracked panels, rotting, or warping are common signs of some form of damage, whether that is heat, physical damage from something slamming into it, or the materials underneath beginning to rot or fall apart. Discolouring is not as bad, but it can still be something worth fixing.

Mildew, mold, and fungus are other major signs that something is wrong because they tend to only grow in the presence of a water leak. On the other hand, panels that seem to warp and bubble may be dealing with too much heat, creating gaps or cracks in the material.

Important Tools

Knowing which tools to use can dramatically speed up the repair work that you do, even if you do not need to use some of them. Without the right equipment, you might be forced to improvise or try out risky methods of fixing the vinyl – and you might not actually repair it at all.

Always make sure that you have some core tools available. These are things that you will usually have in a toolbox or garage:

  1. A hammer
  2. A caulking gun
  3. A tape measure
  4. A utility knife
  5. A crowbar or pry bar with a flat end

You might also want some more specific equipment, like tin snips or a zip tool, to help with fiddly work and to make sure that the materials hold. The exact tools that you use are entirely up to you, but the better prepared you are, the easier the work will become.

Also, make sure to have spare vinyl panels available. You never know when you will simply have to tear off a ruined panel and replace it.

Repairing Vinyl Siding

Vinyl is a tough and reliable material, but that does not make it any less resistant to damage. The exact method you will have to follow when repairing the material depends on how it has been damaged – and how much damage there is – but the basics are always the same.

Fixing Holes

Vinyl can sometimes develop small holes, usually due to physical damage. These are not hard to patch up, although it gets harder as the size of the hole increases. If the holes are too extreme, then you can just replace the entire siding panel altogether.

It is a good idea to clean up the vinyl before you do anything, usually using soap and water. This clears away any dirt or debris that might cause problems and can help remove the cause of the damage as well.

Then, get your caulk gun and prepare a tube of caulk. If you have not done this before, be sure to read any user manuals or included guides since each tool may operate slightly differently. When it is ready to use, insert the nozzle into the hole and start to fill it.

Wait until the calk is overfilling the hole before pulling it away. This can help you avoid future water damage, something that can be really important in areas with a lot of heavy rain. Once the caulk is in place, leave it for 24 hours, then scrape away anything that is not flush with the wall. You can paint over the caulk later if needed.

Patching Damage

Larger holes or thin cracks aren ot easily fixed with caulk, either because they are too big or because your tools are not suitable for the job. Instead, you can patch it up – which requires more work but gives you the same results.

As before, clean the area. Then, get a spare piece of siding and cut out a section that is slightly larger than the damaged area. You still want the lips and edges to be curved, so make sure that the section is still usable if you are cutting it. Otherwise, you might waste perfectly good siding pieces.

Double-check that the piece of siding you have cut matches with the rest of the siding. If you need to trim down the new piece, then do so, but be careful to not break the piece before it can be set in place.

Then, you just have to patch the damage. Put some caulk on the patch and some more surrounding the hole or crack. Place the patch where it needs to go and hold it there for a while, putting pressure against it to secure it in place. It will take a while to ‘glue’ the patch down, but it should hold perfectly.

Like earlier, you can wipe away any extra caulk, and you can always paint over the patch again if you need to. This could be important if you were forced to use a different color of siding due to not having any spares of the right color.

 

How to Upgrade Your Lawn Using Hardscaping and Softscaping

If you are feeling bored of your plain lawn, it might be time to do a bit of landscaping and upgrade your garden space. There are many different things you can do to make a regular lawn a bit more interesting, and these can be applied to home and commercial properties alike.

Landscaping features can be divided into two main subcategories: hardscaping and softscaping. But what do those mean? Below, we will explain both categories and how they work, as well as give you some tips and ideas you can use as inspiration for your landscaping projects.

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What is Hardscaping?

Hardscaping refers to projects done using hardscape materials. But what are hardscape materials? 

Hardscape refers to landscaping materials that are not living. That means rocks, stones, deadwood, concrete, and similar solid, non-living materials. The hardscaping category also usually includes water features because the construction of water features uses non-living materials to hold the water in place. 

Most construction projects in the garden are counted as hardscaping, including walkways, walls, fences, decks, gazebos, built-in furniture, arbors, patios, and pergolas. If it is not alive, it is probably a hardscape feature!

What Is Softscaping?

As you might have guessed, softscaping is the opposite of hardscaping. While hardscaping refers to non-living materials for landscaping, softscaping refers to projects using living materials such as plants. That means that softscape features include lawns, turf, vines, trees, shrubs, flowers, mulch, ivy, and any other sorts of living plants.

Combining Hardscape and Softscape Features

While some people like to base their gardening projects on purely hardscape features or purely softscape features, most gardeners like to combine the two, incorporating elements of both into their landscaping projects. 

Combining elements of hardscape and softscape into a single project gives variety and contrast, helping the plants in your softscape features to really stand out. In short, combining the two features makes your garden design really pop. 

Hardscape features can make an amazing core for your garden design projects but can be quite bland and harsh on their own. If you have got a large space, then big hardscape features can fill in gaps, bulk things out, and provide definition between areas of plants. They add depth and structure, but they need plants to liven them up and make things more exciting. Without softscape elements, hardscape gardens can seem very sterile and cold.

Similarly, if your garden is entirely filled with plants, those areas of plants can blur into one another and look chaotic. You need hardscape elements to organize your garden space and bring definition to the chaos of living plants. While hardscape alone can look too sterile, softscape alone can look poorly maintained and messy.

Hardscape and Softscape: Top Ideas

There are limitless ways you can combine elements of hardscaping and softscaping. With a little imagination, you can do pretty much anything. That freedom can be intimidating, however, so we have put together a few ideas to get you started. All of these are just suggestions, and you can adapt them and build on them however you like in order to achieve the garden design of your dreams.

If you have got a hardscape path down your garden, why not try planting along the sides of the pathway? A line of flowers or small shrubs along the side of a path can help it to blend into the garden better, feeling more like an integrated part of the design rather than a harsh cut across the lawn.

Similarly, if you have got a long driveway leading into your property, planting trees alongside it transforms it into a large-scale landscaping project rather than just a branch of road. 

A gazebo is a popular piece of large garden furniture, but it can dominate a garden and distract from the plants around it. Trailing vines and ivy can help to blend it into its surroundings, breaking up the harsh lines of the gazebo with greenery and life.

If your backyard is looking a bit cluttered with plants, try adding some hardscaping to make it look more organized. A fountain or other water feature can help a wild garden to look well planned and organized and can be designed to look relatively natural while still bringing that hardscape contrast to your space. 

Alternatively, you could add retaining walls to your flowerbeds. Raising beds up adds verticality to your garden, and the hardscape element of the retaining wall draws a clean line around each flowerbed. That stops things from looking cluttered without requiring you to remove any plants at all from your garden or other space. 

These are just ideas, though. There is no wrong way to combine hardscape and softscape landscaping features, and the only limit is your imagination. If you want to try something, not on this list, go ahead! The ideas outlined above are a great starting point to fire up your imagination rather than a prescriptive list of options.

Conclusion

Understanding the difference between hardscape and softscape is a vital step towards upgrading your garden to look its best. Knowing what you are doing enables you to understand why things look good next to each other in certain configurations, which in turn helps you to design and build things that look great every single time. The important thing about landscaping is that you can experiment, though. Try combining hardscape and softscape features in new, unexpected ways to get an exciting and fresh look for your garden!

How to Make Your Own DIY Compost Bin for Home Composting

Compost is a valuable resource for your garden, as well as being a great way to deal with garden waste. But a compost heap is not an attractive garden accessory, so if you are considering getting into composting at home, you will probably want to build a compost bin in order to keep all of that unsightly waste out of sight while it slowly breaks down into compost. 

The good news is that making a compost bin as a DIY project is easy! With some basic equipment and a couple of hours of spare time, you can assemble a great-looking and effective compost bin at almost no cost at all. Below, we will introduce you to two different ways to make a DIY compost bin, so you can choose whichever option most appeals to you.

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DIY Wire Compost Bin Guide

Wire is one of the easiest materials to use to build a compost bin for your garden. It might not be the most attractive option, but it is very affordable and easy to use to make something entirely functional and effective.

For this method, you will need 10 feet of chicken wire (preferably galvanized), some sturdy wire to use as ties, 4 wooden posts, some wire cutters, a hammer, and a pair of pliers. That is all!

To start with, choose a spot in your garden for the bin. Then, bend the chicken wire into a large circular tube, and cut the sturdy wire into short lengths to use as ties. 

Using your pliers, bend back around 3 inches on each end of your length of chicken wire. This will give you an easier surface to tie together with your ties, making the next step of the process much more straightforward.

When you are happy with the chicken wire, use your sturdy wire ties to fasten the two ends together. Space these out evenly, and then use your pliers to tighten them up as much as possible. You are looking to get the tightest and firmest clamping together you can.

Set out the circle of wire in the spot where you want your bin to go, and place the four wooden posts inside it, spaced out as evenly as you possibly can. You will need a second person to hold the posts into place here. With that second person holding each post in turn tightly against the circle of wire, use your hammer to firmly drive each stake into the ground. When they are all in place, your new compost bin will be ready to use.

Because a wire compost bin is quite a loose, flexible option, turning your compost can be frustratingly tough. However, with proper maintenance, turning is not actually strictly necessary. If you ensure that your heap always contains a good mix of green and brown substrates and keep it regularly moistened, you can actually get away without turning it and still get great results.

DIY Wood Slat Compost Bin Guide

A wood slat bin is a little trickier to build than a wire bin, but it looks amazing and offers great composting results. If you are willing to put in the extra effort in order to get a more aesthetically pleasing compost bin, then the wood slat option might be perfect for you.

What you will need for a wooden slat compost bin is fairly straightforward: 7 pieces of untreated 2×6 lumber, 3 feet long per piece. 4 wooden stakes, sturdy enough to hold it up, 3 feet long per stake. A selection of galvanized nails, at least 2 ¾ or preferably 3 inches long. You will also need a hammer.

Start by nailing your 2x6s to your wooden stakes to construct the sides of the bin. Make sure you use at least two nails on each end of each one of the 2x6s for a sturdy connection. You will be using two 2x6s for each side of the bin, apart from the front, where you will be using a single one. That arrangement leaves a gap at the front, making it easier to reach in and turn the compost. 

Make sure you leave a gap of around 3 inches between the slats of the sides of your bin and several inches of space free at the bottom. You will need quite a lot of protruding stake at the bottom in order to drive it into the ground safely and securely.

Once you are happy that everything is nailed securely together, put your new bin in place and use your hammer to drive the stakes into the ground. Sink them in at least a few inches, ensuring that everything is even and firmly fixed into place.

If you build two of these bins next to each other, you can easily turn your compost simply by shoveling the entire pile from one bin into the other. This is much easier and simpler than trying to turn the pile in a single bin!

Conclusion

Making your own compost bin can be a very satisfying DIY project, taking up no more than a single afternoon of your time and requiring no specialist skills at all. Even if you are a complete novice, you can easily build yourself a great-looking and effective compost bin, all at a fraction of the cost of purchasing a ready-made compost bin from a store. You can even decorate your new compost bins however you want, ensuring that they fit in with whatever aesthetic you prefer for your garden.