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The skip hire business appears to be geared to servicing those who not only know the things that they need but who also know how the whole 'skip hiring thing' works. Jargon abounds - and this can be daunting to the 'occasional hobbyist' who needs to rent a skip. Nonetheless, on occasions, you'll have to rent a skip. So here are ten things which you should know - along with some hints and suggestions.

1. How can I hire a dumpster? There are lots of reasonably small operators who will provide skips. They're all 'local' in the sense that there's no 'national skip hire company' in the UK. Those purporting to be 'national' are waste management companies or skip brokers which will sub contract to local skip hire companies. So you ought to be able to have a deal by going direct to these local companies. A look in almost any local business directory or on the net should provide lots of skip hire companies from which to select. Search for 'skip hire' - and, in case you're utilizing the internet, add the region of the state or county where you need to employ the skip. You can search on your own local council's web site. Many councils provide a summary of waste contractors in their own region. Another approach would be to have a look at skips on drives and roads near you. By law, the operators must put their name and contact details in the skip. Choose some or all of these operators - and give them a call.

2. Avoid making errors It's a great idea to check together with the Environment Agency the skip operator you want to contact is properly qualified and licensed to carry waste. Ask the skip operator for its waste carrier license number. Then enter this amount of the Environment Agency's site - to check if it's a valid permit. It's also advisable to ask to see a copy of the operator's pubic liability insurance - just in case the operator damages your property while delivering or accumulating the dumpster and you need to pursue an insurance claim against the operator.

3. What size skip do I want? It doesn't help the beginner, but skips come in a number of sizes - and skips stick to the 'imperial' measures of cubic yards, not metres. A cubic yard is actually a space measuring one yard (three feet or 0.92 metres) by one yard by one yard. This equates - very roughly - to two standard washing machines or dishwashers, or to one erect fridgefreezer. The most frequent size of skip - in a residential area - is one which hold either six or eight cubic yards of materials. These two sizes of skip are known as 'builders' skips'. So, when you contact skip operators, you should make certain that you understand which size of builder's skip everyone is referring to. The optimum size of skip for your need is the one which allows you to use all of its space to contain all of the waste you need to dispose of. The complication in all this is that the larger the dumpster, the cheaper it is per cubic yard. However in case you can't fill the skip with waste, you're paying money to only move air. In addition, many councils don't allow skips with a capacity bigger than eight cubic yards to be put on a pubic highway.

4. Loading the skip In the event that you can't load the skip yourself - or get some of your friends and family to do it for you - you probably need to look at alternatives to disposing of your waste materials. This really is likely to mean contacting a specialist waste clearance business, for example Waste King, which supplies both labour to load the vehicle along with the waste materials with which to remove it.

Skip Hire Harwich5. Access problems Skip lorries are inclined to be between eight and half feet and nine and half feet wide. They have a tendency to weigh at least 7.5 tonnes. If that isn't the case, the skip will need to be set on the road next to your own property. That signifies that you'll need a skip permit. In addition, in the event the skip has been set in a controlled parking zone - such as in a residents' parking area, pay & display parking bay and even where there's a single yellow line painted near the kerb - you'll have to obtain a parking suspension. Both the skip permit as well as the parking suspension not only cost money but will take several days to arrange.

6. How long can I keep a dumpster? Operators will want to gather the (complete) skip in a week, or two weeks at the most. If you need the skip to be removed sooner - or later - you need to discuss this with the skip hire firm. Needless to say, if the skip will be put on the street, you must take account of the provisions of your own skip permit and any parking suspension that really needs to be in place. These two things cost money. This means that the longer that the dumpster is there, the more cash it costs you.

7. What can I place in a dumpster? You can put more or less anything in a skip that isn't: -- Liquids -- Oil, petrol or diesel - - cans of paint and Paint -- Fluorescent tubes - - Gas canisters and gas bottles -- Asbestos -- Electrical appliances and equipment -- Batteries -- Tyres - - Televisions and computer screens -- Refrigerators, freezers and ac units -- Plasterboard -- Hazardous and toxic substances -- Clinical or medical waste, including syringes Another important rule regarding filling skips is that - contrary to popular opinion - you mustn't over fill a skip. The skip should 'level filled' - that is, the waste should be level with but not above the edges of the skip. The operator could - legitimately - charge you additional money for the hire of the skip or request you to remove the waste prior to the skip can be taken off, in case the waste is above these edges.

8. What happens to the things in the dumpster? It's not a bad idea to ask this question of the company that provides the dumpster. The operator ought to have the capacity to inform you the landfill site to which your waste is going - and how much of it, if any, will avoid going to landfill. The answer depends on the type of waste which you put in the skip, where the operator is based along with the skip operator's preferences. Some skip operators got their own waste processing facilities. Others use third party waste processing facilities.

9. How much should I expect to pay? The cost of the skip is determined by its size, the waste material you're putting in it and where - in the UK - you're based. As a rough guide, an average price for an eight yard contractor's skip is around GBP220, in addition to the cost of any parking bay suspension and skip permit.

10. Will there be an alternative to a skip? Yes, there is. You might find that using a specialist waste clearance, collections and recycling company - such as Waste King - rather than a skip will save you time, energy, effort and money. A truck with Environment Agency accredited staff is less disruptive, a lot less unsightly, cleaner, faster and much more efficient than using a skip to dispose of the waste materials. Moreover, Waste King's staff will segregate the waste as a way to make sure that the maximum amount is recycled and the minimal quantity waste goes to landfill - thereby helping the ecosystem too. A company including Waste King will: -- Save you time in clearing the waste, in contrast to the time taken to fill a dumpster and after that get it removed - - Save you money because it only charges for the number of waste removed (not by the skip load)) -- Take away a wider range of waste materials than are permitted to be set into a dumpster -- Be able enough to clear waste materials from any part of your own property - so, unlike skips, there are never any 'access issues' Moreover, since no skip is left overnight, your neighbours can't fill up the skip by using their waste materials when no one's looking - so you only pay for your waste to be removed.

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