15 Oct 2020

A couch can be a big and bulky piece of furniture, often one of the bigger furniture items in your home. Finding a way to get rid of a couch can seem like a daunting task at first, but there are certain methods that work surprisingly well and can make it much easier to get that seating out of your home in a reasonable amount of time. But how do you do it, and what sort of costs or fees might it take if you can’t do it all by yourself?

Your Options

How you throw away a couch, as well as old furniture in general, depends on the exact way that you want the job to be done. Before you actually do anything, you need to make sure that the couch is ready to move – this is also a good chance to decide if you are going to get rid of any other furniture too since it can be much easier to take multiple large items away at the same time than doing them individually.

Once you are past the preparation stage and ready to actually get rid of that couch, it is time to figure out the best way to get it removed once it is outdoors. Save the ‘physically taking it out of your home’ stage for later, since right now, it is best to plan ahead and know what kind of option you will choose.

Curb Disposal

One of the oldest methods of couch removal was to simply leave it on the curb of your nearby street, allowing anybody to take it if they want. However, this isn’t all it is for – many trash collection services will actually see furniture left outside as something that they can take, so even if your couch isn’t wanted by a passer-by, it can still be taken by the normal removal service.

Note that the removal service might only take these items under certain conditions. For example, some require a note or sticker saying that you are wanting to get rid of the item so that they don’t take regular furniture. Others might only allow a single bulk pickup of large items once per month, and many require you to arrange for the pickup and pay extra as a result.

On the upside, though, there is almost no work involved. Other than getting the couch out of your home, which you would need to do anyway, you barely have to do anything and can treat it as a very low-cost option. Even better, if a random person passing by decides to take it for themselves, you won’t even need to pay extra fees.

Keep in mind that not all garbage or recycling services will accept waste left on the curb, even items that are essentially the same ones they would normally collect, depending on your local rules or the rules of the service itself.

Roll-Off Dumpsters

A roll-off dumpster can be one of the most reliable ways for trying to haul away multiple large items, meaning that you can get more than just an old couch away from your home in almost no time. Renting a roll-off dumpster is both affordable and relatively quick, requiring little more than a phone call to set up, and you can even negotiate or agree to the rate ahead of time rather than having to worry about it afterward.

The main benefit of having a furniture disposal dumpster like this is that the furniture removal process itself can be scheduled. Since the dumpster needs to be picked up by the junk removalists, you can use this as a scheduled date to have your project done, meaning that you can have multiple days to actually get the furniture where it needs to go rather than rushing to have it moved into a truck as soon as it arrives.

With much less personal worry and stress involved, this is an excellent option for people who don’t want to fuss over having to wait for the pickup, especially since the scheduled date is shared between both parties. You can sometimes even call the company and have them come to perform the furniture removal earlier than normal, skipping a huge part of the wait if you are done ahead of time.

The only significant downsides here are that you have to load the items yourself and can’t easily move the dumpster once it is delivered, so you have to make sure that you can get the old couch in properly. It might also really help to watch out for weight limits, and different dumpster sizes since each company and dumpster type might have a particular set of rules or restrictions in place to help the couch removal to go smoothly.

If you exceed the weight limit, go above the height of the dumpster or put restricted items into the container, you might be forced to pay an extra fee for each of those issues. You can usually ask the furniture disposal or junk collection service for the exact rules they want you to follow, but they can differ for each company or group you work with, so don’t assume that they will be the same every time.

Scrap Dealers

While a couch might not seem like something you could put in a scrap yard, it all depends on the materials inside it. Some older couches might even have non-ferrous metals in them, which can be surprisingly valuable no matter where they come from. While you might be better off taking old furniture to a scrap yard if its metal, it is possible to turn a profit if you happen to have enough material on you.  Even if you don’t make that much, it is still a bit more money in your pocket for hardly any work.

Because of how this system works, it is more suitable for large-scale furniture disposal, rather than just individual couch removal. The more metal items you have and the more scrap metal you can get from junk removal, the better you will be paid, and it is also an indirect way of recycling old furniture. Instead of just using it as a place to dump furniture, the majority of the metal there will be re-used.

The only major issue is the fact that you will need to get your furniture there, often requiring a large truck unless you can break the furniture down ahead of time. If you can’t fit all of the items in your vehicle at once, you might need to make multiple trips.


If you are able to, giving items to charity can be an effective couch removal method, getting rid of the furniture entirely without needing any kind of furniture dump trip. Groups such as the Salvation Army have many locations that can accept furniture, even if it isn’t technically the one nearest to your home. While they can’t usually haul away the donations themselves, if you can take it in your own vehicle, it doesn’t get much more difficult than simply dropping it off at the back of the building when they are ready to receive it.

Of course, you will have to call ahead, as large donations can’t always be accepted as a spur-of-the-moment arrival. This means that you will need to know what you are getting rid of ahead of time, and you should avoid trying to force more furniture on them if they have only agreed to take in a few particular items.

The main benefit of giving items to charity is that it makes old furniture useful again, sends the related money of the sale to a good cause, and is one of the few options that doesn’t result in the item getting destroyed. A charity shop that dumps furniture it can’t give away or sell is almost unheard of, so eventually, somebody will buy it.


If all else fails, then the best choice to handle couch removal is to simply dump it in a landfill. Nobody really likes doing this, and it is one of the most polluting and least eco-friendly methods of junk removal there is, but it is also generally a convenient option if you can’t make anything else work. Couch removal via a landfill is a permanent method of junk removal since you are not likely to get the furniture back afterward – most junk removal efforts at a landfill involve burying it beneath more loads of trash.

Even on top of the pollution element, landfills aren’t placed near cities for obvious reasons, such as the smell. Couch removal at the nearest landfill might take a long time, and you will need to take the furniture quite a distance. If you are only using one vehicle, large-scale junk removal can also take multiple trips, especially if you are using a car rather than a truck. A price might be involved, too, although not all landfills charge, and those that do are usually cheap.

Which option is best?

Junk removal, in general, can be quite a varied process, and there are plenty of ways to handle it. Some people will focus on one furniture junk removal system or option over another, while other people might simply lean towards whichever junk removal choice is most convenient at the time. There isn’t a “best option,” but some clearly have more flaws than others.

For example, landfill hauling is one of the most polluting ways to dispose of a couch, other than perhaps burning it. It is far more damaging than donating to charity, but if your city doesn’t have many charities or places that accept donations, it could still be the most convenient one. Keep in mind that there can also be price differences between one method and another, which might come into play if you are running on a very limited budget.

It might also be helpful to remember that some companies exist to offer a junk removal service under a unique, all-rights-reserved-style name that might not immediately indicate how they do it. Ask some detailed questions about their approach to waste management, or at least about how the junk is disposed of. Some groups will try to donate everything they can, while others will just destroy every item and be done with it.

How should I choose?

Compare everything! Prices, difficulty, travel times, and overall hassle can all matter when you are removing a couch, and even more so when you are removing an entire load of furniture at once. Whatever you settle on, it won’t be that difficult to find a service that can do it in your local area, but there are still enough differences to make the decision meaningful.

Also, put it in the context of what you are doing. Are you removing the couch or sofa because you are renovating your whole home and have other furniture to get rid of as well, or are you only removing the couch and nothing else? The larger the workload, the more important it might be to choose a removal method that can handle the rest of the scrap furniture.