10 Nov, 2023
Written By: Josh Morris

Your Questions about Skip Hire Answered. 

1. What is a skip and why might I need one?

What is a skip? It is not a crisp or a fun way to get around town, it is what some would call the unsung hero of the waste world. They have a bad rep for being ugly, stinky and overfilled all the time...but that is like some men we know, so don't be too harsh on it!

Skips are your go-to when you've got a load of junk to ditch – whether it's the DIY home improvement project gone wrong, the debris from that a garden makeover, or the aftermath of demolishing walls.

A "skip" is basically a large, metal container designed for the temporary storage and transportation of waste or debris. Skips are commonly used in the construction industries for efficient waste disposal but households can also hire them for short periods of time.

Skips aren't just for a one-off spruce up...there are plenty of other occasions where skip hire could be ideal. This could be:

  • Home Renovations: They can be your saviour when it comes to disposing of construction debris, broken tiles, plasterboard, timber and old fixtures.
  • Office or Business Clear-outs: This is a perfect way to get rid of the old and welcome the new. You can skip old furniture, files, equipment, and general office waste.
  • Event Clean-ups: After hosting large events such as a wedding, party or festival. Skips can handle the dreaded aftermath by collecting food containers, packaging, decorations and other waste from the gathering.
  • House Moves: If relocating, a skip can help streamline your move, it is a fantastic way of decluttering and disposing of items you really don't need.
  • Garden Clearances: Tree trimmings, branches, grass clippings and soil. It is a convenient solution to keeping your garden tidy.
  • Spring Cleaning: When you embark on a thorough spring clean, a skip can assist in removing clutter, outdated appliances, unwanted furniture and other general household waste.

2. What sizes of skips are available?

Mini Skip 2-3 yards: A small skip ideal for small projects, such as garden clearances, small renovations or disposing of household waste.

Midi 4 yard Skip: (40 bin bags of waste or 20 wheelbarrows full) - Ideal for medium sized projects, which includes kitchen or bathroom renovations, clearing out a single room, or disposing of moderate amounts of household or garden waste.

Builder's skip 8 yard -10 yards: (80 bin bags of waste or 40 wheelbarrows full) - These are the most popular choice and we would highly recommend. Perfect for bulky waste like construction, debris, soil and larger amounts of waste. 

Maxi - 12 yard Skip: (120 bin bags of waste or 60 wheelbarrows full) - Well suited for larger domestic or commercial projects such as full house clearances or large scale renovations.

Roll on Roll Off skip 20-40 yards: Typically used for commercial or industrial purposes. Suitable for large scale construction projects. 

3. How do I choose the right skip size for my needs?

Picking the perfect skip size is a waste management masterpiece:

Estimate Your Junk: Figure out how much stuff you're tossing, whether it's old furniture, DIY debris, or garden greens.

Survey Skip Sizes: Skips come in various sizes, so think about how much space you need. Don't skimp; it's okay to go a bit bigger.

Match the Project: Match the skip size to your project. Small skips for small jobs, big skips for big projects.

Space and Permits: Check you've got space when placing the skip and see if you need any permits if you're placing it outside the property.

Ask the Experts: Don't hesitate to consult your skip provider for advice on the ideal size.

Finding the right skip size is like a puzzle - solve it, and you'll save both space and money!

4. What can and can't I put in a skip?

You will find that generally, most household items can be placed in a skip, this could be anything like:

General Household Waste: This includes items like old furniture, broken appliances, clothing, toys, and general clutter.

Garden Waste: Branches, leaves, grass, soil, and other organic materials are generally accepted.

Construction and Demolition Waste: Materials such as bricks, concrete, tiles, plasterboard, wood, and metal can go in a skip. These are often generated during construction or renovation projects.

Furnishings: Such as, old carpets, rugs, and laminate flooring. 

Electrical Appliances: Many electrical appliances, like dishwashers, stoves, washing machines, and TVs, can go in skips. Some appliances may require special disposal processes, so it's a good idea to check with the company.

Metal: Scrap metal, such as old bicycles, metal pipes, and radiators, can often be disposed of in skips.

Cardboard and Paper: Cardboard boxes and paper waste are usually accepted for recycling in skips.

Non-Hazardous Commercial Waste: Skip hire can also be used for non-hazardous commercial waste, such as office furniture, non-sensitive documents, and similar items.

Plastics: Clean plastic materials like toys, containers, and non-hazardous plastic waste are generally accepted.

Wood: This includes timber and wooden furniture, although, larger pieces may need to be broken down to fit into the skip.

However, there are certain items that skips simply cannot handle. These are: 

  • Hazardous waste: Radioactive materials.
  • Plasterboard
  • Mattresses
  • Fridges
  • Asbestos
  • Batteries
  • Electrical Appliances
  • Gas Cylinders
  • Explosive substances (leave the fireworks till November)
  • Flammable Liquids
  • Liquid waste: No paint, oil, solvents, chemicals.
  • Medical waste.
  • Tyres


5. How long can I keep the skip for?

Well the short answer is....it all depends on the company you use. 

Generally, skip hire duration's typically range from a few days to a couple of weeks. Some companies offer shorter term hires, such as 3-5 days for a smaller project. For larger projects, longer hire periods of 1-2 weeks or even longer may be available.

If you find that you may need to extend the skip hires stay at your humble rubbish hotel, then most skip hire services should be able to facilitate that for you, but, there is usually an extra fee for this. 

The price of that extra charge will vary with each company but to give you an example, us at Busy Bins do add on an additional charge of £20 per week for extended hire.

If you are ever lost in the world of hiring deadlines, always make sure to discuss this with the company providing your skip. 

6. Do I need a permit for skip hire?

  •  When permits are required (e.g., placing on a public road).

A skip hire permit is a legal requirement in certain situations, when placing a skip on public property, such as a road, pavement or public parking area. The permit will ensure that the waste recycling companies skip will be positioned safely, not obstructing traffic or pedestrians and so that it meets local regulations regarding skip placement. 

  • How to obtain a permit, typical costs, and duration.

The responsibility for getting a permit falls on yourself when hiring the skip or the company. 

If you require a skip hire permit for any skip waste, always speak with the provider, as they can point you in the right direction on where to obtain one, if they don't provide you with one, you would have to speak with your local council.

Many companies will obtain the skip permit on your behalf for a fee. They will also provide cones and lights if required. IE. Busy Bins (Shameless Plug)

7. How is the waste disposed of?

Pick-Up: When your skip is filled up or your rental period ends, the skip provider comes to collect it with their skip-carrying truck.

Skip Journey: Your skip goes on a little adventure to a waste wonderland called a transfer station or recycling centre.

Sorting Time: Once delivered, the management services both employees and high-tech machines work together to separate recyclables like plastic, paper, and metals from the stuff that can't be recycled. It's like a big recycling party!

Recycling: The recyclables continue their journey to recycling facilities where they get a makeover and get ready for their next life.

Landfill Resting Place: The non-recyclable waste finds its spot in a landfill, where it gets cosy with other waste and lives out the rest of its days.

Hazardous Waste: If there are any dangerous materials, they get special treatment special treatment, storage, or disposal processes to ensure they do not pose environmental or health risks

By recycling and disposing of waste properly, you're helping keep the environment happy and healthy. So, give yourself a pat on the back for being a responsible skip hirer!

8. How much does skip hire cost?

The cost of skip hire can vary widely based on several factors, including the skip size, your location, the duration of hire, whether you need a permit, and any additional services. Here's a estimate of the cost range:

  1. Mini Skip: £70 - £130.
  2. Midi Skip: £130 - £220.
  3. Builder's Skip: £220 - £350
  4. Maxi Skip: £350 - £550

These estimates are for a typical 7-day rental without a permit. Prices can be higher in other areas. Additional costs may apply for permits, extra rental days, and specific waste disposal fees (e.g. for hazardous materials).

To get an accurate quote, it's best to contact local skip providers, as prices can vary depending on your location and waste requirements.

9. What should I look for in a skip hire company?

The first step would be to understand the volume and type of waste that needs to be disposed of. By understanding this, this will help you determine the skip size you need and the type of skip that you require.

Got your details? Get browsing! Have an extensive research into local skip hire in Manchester, across Greater Manchester, or wherever you may be based across the UK. If you are in an even bigger hurry, skip hire near me should do the trick.

Once you have researched you can then make a list and start to contact reputable skip hire companies, who offer the best waste management solutions. Make sure too: 

  • Look at customer reviews
  • Check their Licences and permits
  • Compare skip prices across the providers. 

It is also crucial to enquire about the duration of the skip hire, any restrictions on the types of waste accepted (heavy waste: concrete etc), the range of skips that they provide, if they carry out domestic and commercial jobs and the disposal methods that the company use for their waste clearances. 

10. Any tips for using a skip efficiently?

Using a skip efficiently is important to make the most of the space you have and to ensure a safe and cost-effective waste removal process. There is more to it then just throwing in all the junk you can find.

Don't worry though, the skip company don't expect you to be the national stacking champion of the world. Here are a few tips to get the most out of your skip.

  • Plan Ahead: Choose from the range of skip sizes, compare skip hire prices and estimate your waste volume accurately.
  • Sort and Separate: Categorise your waste for efficient disposal.
  • Compact the Waste: Break down large items and flatten bulky materials.
  • Avoid Overloading: Follow the skip's fill line to prevent safety issues and extra costs.
  • Load Strategically: Place heavy items at the bottom, layer lighter ones on top, and arrange long items along the sides to maximise space.

11. How do I prepare for the skip's arrival?

First and foremost...don't panic!

The main task is now complete. Now all you have to do is work out where your skip is going before it arrives. 

To do this make sure that you: 

  • Mark a spot in your mind where the skip will go - This should be a space which is clear from overhead obstructions such as trees or phone lines. 
  • Now that you have your designated space, clear out enough room so that the skip will fit and have easy access - This could be moving your car out of the way or relocating your bins.
  • If you don't want any marks, scuffs or damage to your drive then place down some wooden boards in the spot you want the skip to be left. 
  • Clear out an accessible passage - Like Moses and the red sea. Clear out a safe path from your house to the skip, to make it easier when making trips. 
  • Get the kettle on!  You have done your bit for now, time to wait for the real heavy lifting. 

12. How quickly can a skip be delivered and collected?

How quickly a skip is delivered and collected really all comes down to the specific skip hire and waste management company that you use. With each standard skip hire, the service will differ, but you will find that most companies will have delivery slots.

This could be an hour, 2 hours or Morning & Afternoon slots.

Again, just as an example, we offer Morning Slots (6.30am – 12.30pm) or Afternoon Slots (12.30pm- 6pm).

In many cases, skip delivery and collection can be arranged within 1-2 days. Some providers may offer same-day services, while others may require a few days' notice.

As always, when looking for skip hire, make a note of the pros & cons of what services they offer and what you think would work out best for you. If you are wanting a quick drop off and pick up, focus on next day delivery or google next day skip hire.

If you are wanting a bit longer, why not try companies that have a standard skip hire period of 7 days from delivery. Find the company that services fit what you are wanting.

13. What happens if I overfill the skip?

We know how tempted it is to keep piling more and more junk into the skip. It is like Pringles, once you drop you can't stop. You end up finding every single thing you can chuck out whilst you got the chance, just make sure to collect your partner back out of it.

Seriously though, try not to overfill your skip. Not only will the skip company flat out refuse to collect it, you will be charged additional fees for how long it stays like this.

Example: You overfill a skip, company refuses to collect as it is a dangerous load, you are charged £20 per day that it stays on your property. It just doesn't make sense for anyone to overfill. If you have more rubbish, order a new skip on a wait and load or look at skip bags.

All you are doing if you overfill is putting yourself at risk of paying avoidable fees & ensuring that the skip company don't collect your junk. 

Now nobody wants that. 

14. Are there weight limits for skips?

With each size skip available to hire, the weight limit will vary. The reason for a weight limit is mainly for health and safety reasons. There are videos out there showing what happens if a skip is over its specific weight limit and it's not pretty! 

If a skip is overweight, the lorry will struggle to lift this, and due to this, could tipple over and cause damage, so this is why weight limits are given to every size skip. Skip hire and waste services do it for employee and customer protection, they don't do it just to be spiteful of you trying to sneak in that last bit of concrete. 

Also, the skip always needs to be safely loaded and level, so that when travelling no loose materials spill out and cause injury or damage. The skip should be filled no higher than the top of its sides. It is a legal requirement that the load is safe to transport. 

If you do end up getting a bit too trigger happy with the junk in your house, most waste companies will take skips that just fall over the weight limit, but there will be charges that comes with this. 

As it says on the skip ... Overloading will always incur extra charges. 

15. Can I move the skip once it's been placed?

Moving a skip once it has been placed can become a bit tricky and we wouldn't usually recommend this. This is why you should make sure that you have the perfect spot picked out for your new arrival when you need a skip. 

If you are desperate and really need to look at moving the skip once the skip is placed, here are a few things to consider.

  1. Check with your provider for guidance - Discuss the reasons for moving it and if they have any recommendations.
  2. Be aware of permit restrictions - If you have a skip permit, they may be restrictions on moving it. Check the permit. 
  3. Prioritise safety and use the right equipment - Moving a skip is physically demanding and could be unsafe. Ensure you have the equipment and manpower. 
  4. Skip size matters - Smaller skips are more manageable to move. 
  5. Prepare for potential surface damage - Moving the skip may cause damage to the surface it was originally placed on. 
  6. Renew permits if the new location requires one - If moving to a different location that requires a permit, obtain a new one for the new location. 

In most cases, it's best to plan the skip's placement carefully to avoid the need to move it later.

However, if you have a legitimate reason to move it, make sure you follow safety guidelines, consult your skip provider, and address any permit issues if applicable.

16. What's the difference between a 'wait and load' service and regular skip hire?

In the Skip industry, you will see the term wait and load quite a lot. 

This just means that when your skip is delivered and placed in the designated space, the skip driver will wait until you load the skip, place it back on the truck and drive away.

This is ideal for large construction projects, where a lot of continuous waste is created and a quick turnaround is needed. 

Don't worry, the driver won't be judging your skip filling skills...or will they?

17. How are skip hire companies environmentally responsible?

Skip hire companies are environmentally responsible in several ways:

  1. Sort and recycle waste.
  2. Properly handle hazardous materials.
  3. Optimise transportation routes for reduced emissions.
  4. Comply with environmental regulations.
  5. Educate customers on responsible disposal.
  6. Invest in eco-friendly initiatives.
  7. Reduce landfill use through recycling efforts.
  8. Seek environmental certifications and participate in sustainability programs.

To choose a green skip hire company, ask about their eco-friendly practices and recycling rates.

Fully licensed waste companies with a positive reputation should be transparent about their environmental efforts and should be more than happy to share and shout about what recycling achievements they have completed!

18. Can I specify a drop-off or pick-up time?

For any drop offs or pick up times, skip companies will vary in what they offer.

For instance: We at Busy Bins offer a Morning Slot or Afternoon slot for when we will deliver the skip, but, some companies may offer 1/2 hour delivery slots, whilst some may not offer a specific time at all, it may just be on that specific date your skip will be delivered. 

This will be the same the skip collection service. 

19. Are there any hidden fees I should be aware of?

Hopefully these fees aren't hidden any longer after reading our blog!

We have explained the hidden fees to watch out for when filling and booking your skip. These could be: 

  • Permit if the skip is going on the main road. 
  • Overfill charges if your skip isn't level. 
  • Extended rental prices - We charge £20 for extended hire per week. 
  • Weight limit charges - Make sure you don't fill with too much heavy material as you will get charged, or worse, they may refuse to collect the skip until you empty some of it out. 

20. Can I hire a skip for commercial purposes?

In short, yes you can hire a skip for commercial purposes. If hiring a skip for commercial purposes, you will find that the services offered will be tailored around your business and needs. 

Here is the difference between Residential vs Commercial skips:

Skip Sizes: Commercial skip hire means you get the big boys - skip sizes that can handle construction site messes and hefty industrial leftovers. Commercial skip hire services often offer larger skip sizes suitable for handling substantial volumes of commercial waste generated by construction projects, demolitions, or large-scale renovations. 

Permit Requirements: Commercial skip hire for placing skips on public property or roads often involves different permit regulations than residential skip hire. Commercial projects may require additional permits and documentation, which the skip provider can assist with. In the commercial world, permits are like VIP passes.

Pricing: You may need to dig a little deeper in your pockets for commercial skip hire. Commercial skip hire prices tend to be higher than residential skips due to the larger sizes and the handling of specialised waste. 

Terms and Contracts: Commercial skip hire contracts are usually more complex, outlining specific terms related to waste types, disposal methods, and compliance with regulations. Residential skip hire terms are simpler, focusing on general usage.

Flexibility: Commercial skip hire services often offer more flexible scheduling and collection options to accommodate the needs of commercial projects. Commercial projects can be pretty unpredictable. So, commercial skip hire has to roll with the complications and create a more flexible approach unlike household skips which can have a stricter and less complicated process. 

Customer Support: Commercial skip hire providers often have dedicated customer support teams experienced in dealing with the unique requirements of businesses and construction sites, providing tailored solutions and expert advice. Residential skip customer service is more like a friendly chat with the neighbour.

When opting for commercial skip hire, it's essential to communicate your specific waste disposal needs clearly with the provider. The rules change a bit for businesses due to the range of waste, duration etc.

So, whether you're in the commercial or residential club, there's a skip waiting to meet your waste needs!

21. How do I deal with hazardous or special waste?

When dealing with hazardous or special waste, firstly, make sure that you are taking great care when handling these, and that you have the correct equipment. 

A few quick tips on how to deal with these types of waste:

  1. Identify the type of waste - Recognise what you are dealing with. Is it chemicals, batteries, medical waste etc?
  2. Keep it separate and secure - Use specific containers & label them properly. 
  3. Consider professionals for hazardous waste - Using a professional with experience in hazardous waste could be essential.
  4. Stay informed about safe handling - Keep up to date with any new regulations or update any equipment that is showing wear and tear. 

Remember, safe and responsible disposal of hazardous or special waste is crucial to protect the environment and human health. Always follow the specific guidelines and resources available in your area to ensure proper handling and disposal.

22. What if I don’t have space for a skip on my property?

When space is tight, don't fret! Here are some different services that you can use instead of a skip:

Skip on the Street: Get a permit to park a skip on the road, with the council's blessing, of course. It's like your waste's temporary holiday home.

Man and Van to the Rescue: No room for a skip? Hire a waste pro with a smaller van to whisk away your rubbish.

Bag it up: A drug dealers favourite past time! Some companies offer skip bags that you can fill with waste. These are often smaller and more flexible than traditional skips, and they can be placed in driveways or smaller spaces. Fill 'em up, and get them collected.

On-Demand Clean-up: Summon waste warriors! They'll pick up your waste when you schedule a collection, so you don't need to rent a skip.

Recycling Round-Up: For recyclables, hop over to a recycling centre and drop off your goodies. It's an eco-friendly waste disposal trip.

Give or Sell Stuff: Turn trash into treasure by donating or selling usable items. One person's junk is another's joy!

Rubbish Clearance Pros: You can hire a rubbish clearance company to come to your property and load your waste onto their vehicles. They'll come to your rescue, do the heavy lifting, and make your waste vanish.

So remember, even in tight spots, you've got plenty of waste-fighting options!


So there you have it, the skip hire waste guide to help you navigate the world of waste disposal. From picking the perfect skip size to knowing the ins and outs of recycling, you're now armed with the knowledge to make your waste vanish like a magician.

Remember, whether it's a mini skip for your garden makeover or a colossal builder's skip for a massive renovation, skip hire is your trusty sidekick in the battle against clutter. Plus, with eco-conscious practices and responsible disposal, you're not just cleaning up, you're doing it with a green little twist.

If you like what you have read and want some more information on skip hire across Manchester, Bolton, Bury and more... contact us on 0161 766 3330 and our friendly team would be more than happy to help.

If you are like me and have a panic attack every time you have to pick up the phone to ring absolutely anybody, you can view all our Skip Hire Prices, FAQs and how to book on our website: https://busybins.co.uk/skip-hire

So go forth, and let's keep our world tidy and our planet happy, one skip at a time.

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