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Why You Can’t Throw That In Your Dumpster

April 17, 2019

Railroad

Whenever we work with a customer to provide them with a roll-off dumpster rental in Mount Pleasant, Charleston, or the surrounding area, we make sure that they are aware of the various restrictions on disposing of certain items. Those items fall into different categories, and sometimes it can be confusing to a customer to figure out just why they can’t throw batteries, car tires, printer ink, or railroad ties in their rental dumpster. Here’s a look at some of the most common restricted items and why our local government requires them to be disposed of in specific ways.

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Tires

The number of vehicle tires that exist in the state of South Carolina is absolutely staggering. Unfortunately, these heavy-duty rubber objects don’t break down quickly like other types of waste do in the landfill. Even worse, they create two specific public health risks. First, the rainwater that collects inside discarded tires forms a perfect breeding ground for disease-carrying mosquitoes. Second, they create a fire hazard—burning tires are extremely difficult to extinguish and send hazardous fumes into the air. For these reasons, all tires must be disposed of at approved recycling sites. Don’t worry, though—you can throw your old tires into a roll-off in Mount Pleasant; you just need to let us know ahead of time so that we can calculate the additional disposal fee for you.

Batteries and Ink

Battery disposal is a confusing topic to many homeowners, but that’s mainly because there are so many different types of batteries, each with its own set of disposal restrictions. The simplest plan of action is to recycle all batteries, other than the standard non-rechargeable AA and AAA batteries. Car batteries, lithium-ion, nickel-cadmium, and other battery types contain hazardous elements that need to be kept out of landfills, where they can leak into the ecosystem.

Printer ink and toner are in the same category—they contain chemicals that are hazardous for the environment and for humans, and it is up to all of us to make sure that they make their way to recycling sites where they can be disposed of in the proper way. But before you drop those used ink cartridges off at the recycling center, look into the buyback programs that many office supplies retailers offer. If your cartridges have been stacking up for a few years, you may be able to make a significant amount of money back!

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Flammable/Hazardous Materials

It’s not difficult for people to understand why they can’t dispose of flammable and hazardous materials in our roll-off rental dumpsters. But it’s always good to emphasize how important those restrictions are. It might not seem like a big deal to you to toss one can of oil or lighter fluid in your dumpster, but it creates a severe risk for whoever is transporting your dumpster and for you as well. An accident that ignites those materials could endanger your home and those of your neighbors.

Other Items Requiring Special Attention

Our customers are often surprised to learn that railroad ties need special attention for disposal. These large, sturdy pieces of wood are great for landscaping projects, but when you decide to get rid of them, it’s important to remember that they are treated with fire-resistant, powerful chemicals like creosote and arsenic. Make sure you notify us if you have railroad ties to get rid of so that we can work together to make sure they are disposed of safely. And under no circumstances should you ever burn railroad ties—the fumes of those burning chemicals are extremely hazardous to humans and animals.

Finally, we always remind our customers that it’s not best to dispose of food items in our dumpsters. If you’re clearing out an abandoned home or cleaning house in preparation for a move, you may have a lot of food to get rid of. That type of waste, though, has to be disposed of at a municipal solid waste (MSW) landfill, which carries higher fees than the facilities where we normally empty our roll-off rental dumpsters. To avoid those extra fees, throw food away separately from your rental dumpster.

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