How to Clean a Garbage Can
How to Clean a Garbage Can


What You Need

Your outdoor garbage can doesn't take up space or stink up the inside of your home, but that doesn't mean it doesn't require attention from time to time. If you find yourself holding your breath, tossing your full trash bag into the can, and running away, it may be time for a deep cleaning.

As if the smell weren't convincing enough, old garbage scraps and smells can attract flies, maggots, rats, and other pests no one wants lurking around their homes.

Cleaning your garbage can with bleach could lead to permanent damage, depending on what type of trash bin you're working with. Cleaning with bleach can also cause skin irritation and leave you breathing in harsh fumes.

Other cleaning agents like dish soap are useful for removing grease and leftover food from pots and pans, but they may not be heavy-duty enough for leftover garbage grime.

Clean your outside garbage can with the biodegradable* deodorizing, and degreasing power of Simple Green All-Purpose Cleaner. It removes stubborn grime, grease, and lingering odors without bleach found in many other cleaners.

Use the directions below to clean out your trash can at least twice a year.

Directions for Cleaning a Garbage Can:

Before you begin cleaning, move your garbage can close to your water source and where it is easy for water to drain. We also recommend wearing gloves to avoid accidentally touching any unidentified gunk.

  1. Remove trash. Remove any trash bags or loose debris. You may want to wait to clean your cans after your regular garbage pickup day.
  2. Rinse the bin. Use a pressure washer or a hose to rinse your garbage can out thoroughly. It might be easiest to turn the can on its side and spray, so the dirty water doesn't sit at the bottom.
  3. Mix your Simple Green solution in a bucket. Add ½ gallon of Simple Simple Green All-Purpose Cleaner to ½ gallon of water.
  4. Scrub. Use an extendable brush to scrub the bin inside and out. Dip your brush in the solution and swirl it around before using it to start scrubbing.
  5. Rinse with clean water. Use your hose or pressure washer to rinse the inside and outside of the can. Again, if you didn't leave the bin lying on its side while scrubbing, it's easier to get the dirty water out this way.
  6. Allow to air dry. Leave the lid open and allow the inside to dry overnight.

TIP: There are numerous methods for odor elimination and prevention in garbage bins between deep cleanings. A sprinkling of baking soda in the bottom of plastic cans can help absorb lingering smells. Other alternatives include dryer sheets and cotton balls drizzled with drops of essential oils.


Sign Up For Our Newsletter

Join Our Mailing List