15 Oct 2020

Finding dumpsters for rental purposes isn’t hard, and you can track them down in almost any area of the world. However, the real concern for many people is the cost to rent the dumpster itself. Price always comes first when you are on a budget, and it might not be easy to get accurate price information if you are just starting out. In fact, if you aren’t careful, it is very easy to end up paying more for a dumpster that is too big to use appropriately, and many people don’t realize just how much the cost to rent can be impacted by small changes or decisions.

So, how much does it cost to rent a dumpster, and how does the price fluctuate?

Understanding Dumpster Renting Prices

Like most products, dumpsters aren’t priced at a flat rate across all companies. Each business will have its own dumpster rental prices that can be as high or as low as they want, but most of them will be competitive with one another in the interest of business. You can expect the average cost to generally be the same in most locations, although it might increase or decrease based on how often the locals need dumpsters and how many other businesses operate in the area.

This is similar to most other rental cost systems, but it is important to remember that you are paying over a period of time when you rent a dumpster. The longer you own the dumpster, the more you have to pay, meaning that the average cost is generally calculated on a per-week basis. This makes it much easier to compare prices without needing to factor in time or other details that might have bumped the price up higher.

Regardless of whether you are looking at dumpsters or full-sized dumpers, rental costs can change based on various factors. With the dumpster rental process, though, some of these factors are also going to impact how the dumpster itself works, as well as how suitable it might be for your project. Here is a quick overview of these factors and how they can impact the price of your dumpster rental, for better or for worse.


Size is always the first thing that adjusts the average cost of a dumpster for rent. However, size doesn’t follow the same structure you might be expecting: it can vary based on the capacity of the dumpster in cubic yards. A cubic yard is a space measuring 1 yard by 1 yard by 1 yard, or 3 feet by 3 feet by 3 feet, and acts as the main measurement of what a dumpster can hold in terms of debris and trash.

For example, a 10-yard dumpster can hold the equivalent of 10 cubic yards of debris. A 20-yard dumpster holds twice as much, up to 20 cubic yards. Most standard dumpsters can go as high as 40-yard sizes, and each increase in dumpster size also increases the costs associated with the dumpster rental process. In general, the higher the capacity, the higher the prices.

Measuring the Size

In most areas of the world, the average cost to rent a dumpster is measured based on the dumpster size itself. These prices can be increased and decreased through other quirks or changes to the dumpster itself, but this can vary from location to location and business to business. For example:

  • A 10-yard dumpster can cost around $300 for a week, on average. The typical measurements of a 10-yard dumpster are around 14 feet long, 7.5 feet wide, and 3.5 feet high.
  • A 15-yard dumpster can cost around $350 for a week, on average. The typical measurements of a 15-yard dumpster are around 16 feet long, 7.5 feet wide, and 4.5 feet high.
  • A 20-yard dumpster can cost between $350 and $£400 for a week, on average. The typical measurements of a 20-yard dumpster are around 22 feet long, 7.5 feet wide, and 4.5 feet high.
  • A 30-yard dumpster can cost between $450 and $475 for a week, on average. The typical measurements of a 30-yard dumpster are around 22 feet long, 7.5 feet wide, and 6 feet high.
  • A 40-yard dumpster can cost between $480 and $525 for a week, on average. The typical measurements of a 40-yard dumpster are around 22 feet long, 7.5 feet wide, and 8 feet high.

Does this Vary?

Obviously, individual dumpster size details and dumpster rental prices can vary based on the dumpster type in question and the company offering it. Each kind of dumpster is also better for a different type of work, and some are going to be easier to manage than others when trying out particular tasks or aiming to complete a certain project.

How Much Does It Cost to Rent a Dumpster

Weight Limit

Keep in mind that the size can also increase the average weight limit of a dumpster since the capacity goes up as well. 3 tons might not be enough for some projects, and the price per ton of weight capacity can be what some people focus on. A weight limit is often enforced by the company that provides the dumpster rental, so you will need to stay under it or face extra fees.


Dumpster rental prices aren’t only impacted by the size and weight limit. The shape of the dumpster you get is often important, and many people don’t generally realize that you can have multiple dumpsters of different shapes and measurements with the same capacity.

Shape and Capacity

Let us say you are interested in renting dumpster designs with a 30-yard capacity and a weight limit of 3 tons, meaning that you get about 10 cubic yards per ton. If we use the standard measurements of 22 by 7.5 by 4.5, that is a completely average dumpster. However, you might also find one that has a significantly different set of dimensions, but has the exact same capacity and weight limitations.

This is a part of dumpster rental that not many people understand at first, but it can be important when actually trying to rent a dumpster and have it delivered to your home. The capacity of a dumpster can remain the same while the dimensions are different: one dumpster may be slimmer but taller than another, but still, share the same amount of cubic space inside it.


The shape of your dumpster might also impact how it can be delivered. For example, having a dumpster delivered to your home that is 16 feet long won’t be that useful if you only have a 12-foot driveway. Choosing a size and shape that can physically fit into your home’s property boundaries is extremely important since you generally need a permit to have a dumpster that enters publicly-accessible space, especially roads.


While most dumpster rental options are going to be the ‘standard‘ type of dumpster that gets used to hold debris and construction materials. However, you can also get various versions of the same dumpster designs, and some dumpster companies even offer specific types purely for niche kinds of work.

Roll-Off Dumpsters

First of all, remember that not every dumpster is a roll-off dumpster. A roll-off dumpster is an open-top container that uses wheels to help it roll into place, and usually gets seen as the most normal of the large dumpster types. However, there are also small dumpsters that don’t have wheels, as well as smaller roll-off dumpster designs like the types you see behind small businesses.

Other Dumpsters

Beyond that, you might also find larger waste containers that look like roll-off dumpster designs but aren’t quite the same, using a different set of materials to change the kinds of items they can hold. The costs of all these different dumpster types can vary heavily, and there is no real way to judge them without asking the company about their dumpster rental prices.


Dumpster rental companies often have certain rates that they stick to, flat rates and variable rates. It is important to take these into account when arranging a dumpster rental since the average person might not realize just how significantly hidden fees and other unexpected rental cost increases can change the amount that they end up paying.

Flat Rates

When you rent a dumpster at a flat rate, you generally only need to pay a single, all-inclusive price. This covers the delivery, pickup, tax, and any other associated rental cost that might not be directly linked to the dumpster rental itself. However, you will usually still be charged for things like extra tonnage or extensions on the dumpster rental period, and there can be other smaller charges for certain extras. Still, this helps with budgeting and can make it easier to understand what you are expected to pay.

Variable Rates

Variable-rate dumpster rental prices are slightly different. This makes the question of ‘how much does it cost?‘ much more important because there isn’t an easy answer. Added fees can increase the cost of the dumpster rental, but the base price per day might technically be lower, meaning that it can be a cheaper alternative if you are not doing anything to cause those extra charges.

Which is Best?

Either way, dumpster rental prices can differ for plenty of reasons, so there is always a chance that the rates between two dumpster rental services are different without an obvious reason why. At the end of the day, every waste management dumpster company is able to set their own prices, so dumpster rental prices are mostly out of your control.

Extra Fees

Most people are aware of extra fees that can increase their costs, but what exactly are these additional fees, and how do you avoid them? Knowing what to look out for when it comes to costs is important, especially when said costs might put you over your budget or force you to make compromises in other areas. Some common extra fees can include:

Overload charges:

If you push a dumpster beyond max capacity, you will often have to pay an additional flat price per ton, with the costs increasing as you add more tonnage. These costs could easily reach as high as $100 per ton, depending on the company’s rules.

For example, if you had a dumpster rental with a capacity of 3 tons and added an extra 2 tons on top of that, you might be paying an extra $200 in pickup prices. This isn’t added to the consistent dumpster rental prices, but as a single charge at the end.

Extra days:

If you extend your dumpster rental past the agreed rental period, the company will often charge an extra fee on top of the usual rental costs. This is generally a low amount, roughly $5-10 per day. If you keep your dumpster rental period going for an excessively long time, to the point that the rental company has to repeatedly ask you to return it, expect the cost to skyrocket even higher.

Overflow fees:

If the items and debris in the dumpster are flowing over the edge, you will usually have extra costs to pay, since this can get in the way of disposal. For example, if you don’t break down the furniture in a roll-off dumpster rental to make it a more suitable size, the debris can hang over the edge, making it harder for the dumpster rental service to pick up at the end of the rental period.

Special item charges:

Certain landfills will charge higher costs for ‘special’ items, such as mattresses or full televisions. These charges don’t always come from the dumpster rental company, and aren’t added to the recurring dumpster rental prices: they are handled in the same way as overload charges, being paid once at the end of the disposal process or rental period.

Tip fees:

If your driver has struggled to get the dumpster rental in place or has had trouble being able to pick it up, you will have to pay extra costs, especially if they were forced to wait during working hours. This can be applied even if you don’t get the pickup from the same company you rent the dumpsters from the charge comes from whoever picked it up.

Hazardous waste fees:

Including hazardous waste in your dumpster, including items that the company prohibits, will cause extra costs to be added. For example, if you fill a roll-off dumpster with half-used paint cans, you will have to pay a higher cost due to the difficulty in disposing of those items as well as the fact that they are likely to be against the restrictions. Be sure to check what a rental company will count as hazardous ahead of time, just in case.

Note that hazardous waste fees aren’t always about hazardous materials, as the name might imply. If a company has banned something from being put in a dumpster they own, then you are not supposed to put it in, no matter how harmless it might be. The company may have limits on what they can dispose of or how much of a certain material they are allowed to dump, so just because an item is harmless doesn’t mean that it won’t be on their list.

Which dumpster do I rent?

One of the biggest mistakes that you can make when looking at rental dumpsters is jumping to the wrong conclusion straight away. While it can be easy to compare cost, rental period, and size to find one that offers a good balance of both, that might not be what you need, especially if your project is on a smaller scale. For example, if you aren’t going to be producing that much large debris, going for a big dumpster size is just adding a higher cost to your rental, even if it is technically better value for money.

It is also important to remember that not all debris needs to be disposed of straight away. Before you settle on a dumpster – and a cost to go with it – try to work out what you will actually be producing that needs to be thrown away. For some people, what initially seems like a project that will create a lot of debris can end up actually only producing a small amount of unwanted debris, with the rest of it being useful as DIY materials or materials for other projects.

Try to keep the extra fees in mind, too. You can’t always make sure that you will be able to avoid them, especially if you are renting a dumpster on short notice and can’t properly plan around the amount of debris you will create (or the type of debris that you will have to dispose of). If you are not able to prevent them, then you at least want to be sure that you are paying a low enough cost that you can afford the extra charges.

No matter what project you take on and how difficult it might be, there is always at least one dumpster that can suit your needs and work well as a disposal or debris control method. Choosing the right one helps a lot, but as long as you can work around a few minor limitations, there isn’t anything wrong with choosing a dumpster that is slightly too small for your needs – it just means that you might have to dispose of the excess debris yourself.