How to clean an outdoors garbage can. clean a garbage canOkay, so “clean garbage can” sounds like an oxymoron, but it can be done and it should be done! Taking the trash out to the garbage can is made so much worse when you have to hold your breath or wind up gagging. A dirty garbage can is a breeding ground for germs, smells horrible, and is just plain disgusting. With this tip you can clean a garbage can and no longer dread rolling your trash out to the curb.

When to Clean

For outdoor trash cans, the best time to clean them is on trash day, just after they’re emptied. Move the container so it’s a good distance from your house while still being in reach of the garden hose. Ensure that all trash was removed by the garbage pick-up.

How to Clean

Squirt dish soap into the bottom of your trash can. Once the soap is added, use the most powerful spray you can get from your hose to wash the interior of the trash can. Once the trash can is washed, dump the dirty water, give it another rinse and dump that, and then set the can on its side or upside down to air dry.

clean a garbage canDeeper Cleaning

You might decide you need a more powerful cleaning. In that case, combine a gallon of water, 3/4 of bleach, and a tablespoon of powdered laundry detergent. Pour this mixture into the trash can and let it sit for 15 minutes. After the bottom of the trash can has soaked, if you have a brush you don’t mind getting gross, use that to scrub. If not, use your hose and power wash away. When you’re done, dump the water, give the can another rinse, and then set it up to dry.

General Tips

  • You can use a disinfectant on your trash if desired. Just make sure you don’t combine chemicals that can’t be combined.
  • If you really want a clean trash can, buy a spray nozzle for your hose or even rent a power washer. Sticky stuck-on garbage will be easier to remove with a pressure washer.

Clean a Garbage Can with Ease!

It may be a bit of a messy chore, but it’s definitely not difficult. Now you can smugly watch when your neighbors open their trash cans and retch. Adapt these tips to clean smaller trash cans and never have a dirty trash can again.