Properly disposing of so-called clean fill—basically, waste material free from harmful contaminants—does not only make environmental sense, but may also save you money on renting a bin for your construction project. That’s because these containers, also known as mini bins, can be smaller, and because many disposal companies charge less if the materials they are picking up can be recycled at another construction site.
What Is—and Is Not— Considered Clean Fill?
Many construction materials are considered clean fill—brick, concrete, dirt, topsoil, gravel, sand, rubble, and cement. But these materials need to be separated from any other waste and contaminants, so they are pure and can be reused, before they are categorized as clean fill. Clean fill does not include fiberglass, electronics, tires, appliances, chemicals, glass, cardboard, plastics, metals, chemicals, or food or yard waste. These are considered general waste.
Mini bins are specifically designated for clean fill, and come in an array of smaller dimensions. So, for instance, if you’re digging up a space on your property for a patio or a driveway, the soil that you have left over can be thrown into a mini bin and delivered by the dumpster company to a site where it will get a second life. It can be used to raise a lot, shape contours of an area to improve drainage, refill a space where soil has eroded, and for many other projects.
Mini Bins For Clean Fill—An Environmentally Friendly Option
If you’re environmentally conscious, then renting a mini bin for your construction project should be important to you. Picked up in a mini bin, your leftover construction materials will not be filling up your local landfill—they will be reused and recycled. Man-made construction materials, kept apart from any potential contaminants in a mini bin, can be broken down and used to make concrete or new bricks, for instance.
Keep in mind, however, that if you are using a mini bin, you need to observe the same rules as with any dumpster rental. You cannot pile up the soil, asphalt or whatever material you’re loading, over the rim of the mini bin. Transporting any material not level with, or, ideally, below the edge of the bin can result in some of it falling out and causing an accident on the road. Justifiably, this is considered illegal in most areas of Canada.
Most disposal companies charge less for the rental of a mini bin and the pick-up of unmixed building materials, because they can trade these materials at another construction or renovation site. And the demand for these is quite high. Not only within urban areas at home construction sites, but also in rural areas. If you take a drive through the countryside, you may notice many homesteads with “Clean Fill Wanted” signs in front. Fortunately, there are always plenty of people looking for clean fill for their own landscaping or construction projects.