HomeHome ImprovementHow Many Dumpsters Do You Need to Demolish a House?

How Many Dumpsters Do You Need to Demolish a House?

Maybe you bought a fixer-upper or got lucky and scored a house for a steal. Either way, you’re probably planning to demolish it so you can build your dream home. But before you break out the sledgehammer or call in the demolition crew, you need to figure out how to get rid of all the rubble. For starters, you’ll need a reliable dumpster supplier in Austin – if you live in the area.

But how many dumpsters do you need? Well, it depends on various variables. Let’s examine them below before estimating the volume of your debris to paint a better picture.

1. Size of the House

How big is the house? This will largely impact the number of dumpsters you’ll need – the bigger the house, the more room you’ll need for debris. For instance, a 3,000 square feet house may need about ten 40-yard dumpsters to haul away roughly 400 cubic yards of trash. On the other hand, a 1,200 square feet house may need 3-4 equally sized dumpsters – depending on how much waste you’ll toss.

Maybe you intend to reuse some of the materials. As such, you can use smaller-sized dumpsters, such as 15 or 20 yards. Along the same lines, if you go for smaller dumpsters, you’ll need more to handle the same volume of trash.

2. Type of Waste

Pay attention to the building materials you intend to discard. Is the house made of concrete or wood? Some materials, such as concrete and brick, are denser than others. As such, you may need more, smaller-sized dumpsters to fit these materials – as we’ll demonstrate below. Also, dumpsters have a weight rating, implying you can’t stuff them to the brim with heavier debris.

That said, some materials occupy more space in a dumpster yet are lighter than others. Hence, you may require more dumpsters to deal with such debris.

3. Demolition Method

Are you tearing down the house yourself or hiring a professional? If you’re going the DIY route, expect to fill more dumpsters. Why?

A team of demolition experts can bring down a house in a fraction of the time you’d take, leaving you with fewer dumpsters to fill up. For starters, most of the debris would be in larger and compact chunks, making it easy to scoop up and toss into the dumpsters. Also, you won’t have to bother with the laborious task of breaking down larger pieces.

Computing The Volume of Debris

Let’s consider the debris you’re likely to generate for a moment. This may include floor boards, wall frames, piping, roofing, drywall, and so on. To determine the correct number of dumpsters for your demolition project, you need to compute the volume of debris.

So, multiply the length, width, and height of your home to give you an estimate. You also need to factor in the home’s air space into the product – this is usually 0.33. Then, divide the total volume by 27 – as one cubic yard is equivalent to 27 cubic feet of debris – to determine the volume in cubic yards.

For instance, if your home measures 50 ft long by 25 ft wide by 20 ft high, the volume would be 305.6, that is, 50 x 25 x 20 x 0.33)/27. Divide the volume by the dumpster size you choose to find the number of dumpsters your debris will need. If you opt for 40 cubic yard dumpsters, you’ll need 7.6 (or eight dumpsters after rounding off). Ten containers will suffice for 30 cubic yard dumpsters (305.6/30) and so on.

What About Concrete?

Well, this material is way heavier than other debris. A concrete foundation is usually 8-10 inches thick. Let’s assume yours is 10 inches thick. Based on the same formula, the debris would be 38.4 cubic yards (50 x 25 x 0.83)/27). Hint: 0.83 = 10/12 (converted into feet).

Concrete weighs 4,000 lbs per cubic yard, meaning your debris would weigh 153,703 lbs. Usually, waste companies use smaller dumpsters to haul such debris as larger containers would be virtually impossible to lift. Thus, you would need roughly twenty one 20-cubic yard dumpsters to haul the concrete waste.

Get in touch with a reliable dumpster service provider near you to discuss your needs and get an accurate estimate based on their assessment of the volume of waste you plan to dispose. They can also clue you in on your area’s weight restrictions and other regulations. That way, you won’t have to worry about extra costs or multiple trips to the landfill.

It’s hard to predict the exact number of dumpsters you’ll need to demolish a house, as the various factors demonstrate. Even so, you can get a ballpark estimate by computing the volume of debris and assessing your waste type. The formula above can help you hire the right number of containers for the job.


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