Junk Removal Advice:
Not long ago I found myself clearing out the garage in 100-degree heat. When I say it was 100 degrees, I mean it was 100 degrees outside. Inside the garage, it was 300 degrees and rising fast. Was it my fault I waited until August to finally check off this chore from my ‘Honey-Do’ list? I had a plan to make the work go quickly. I’d start by separating the items into 3 groups.
The first group would be things we use occasionally and want to keep around. This pile would include the barbeque we’ve had since before we were married, lawn tools, ladders, my box of auto-related tools, beach chairs, fishing poles and Christmas decorations. Obviously, there are some other items, but these were the major ones.
The second group would be things we never, ever, use, but my wife can’t part with. We’ve moved three times in last twenty years and each time, we made sure to bring these items with us. I guess you could call some of them ‘sentimental’, but they are merely rotting in the extreme weather and will never be enjoyed again. Our son’s first highchair is a good example. We had replaced it after a year, when our then 9-month-old Lab/Satan mix gnawed all four legs down to nubs. I don’t know where the nice replacement high chair, with the aluminum legs went, but it’s not in the garage.
Finally, the trash pile. The trash pile seems to get bigger every time I clean the garage. Items from the first pile eventually make it to this one. Junk in the second pile never leaves the second pile though. It’s hard to explain and if you really need to know, you’ll need to ask my wife.
After about an hour, I was starting to see the light at the end of the tunnel. The 3 piles were growing in the driveway and I would soon be sweeping out the garage for the first time in a year. I wiped my brow and that’s when I saw it. Behind the folded cardboard boxes in the corner, covered in dirt and piled high with boxes of ancient photos, was our old dryer.
Why was this still here? Didn’t I get rid of it when we inherited an almost new one from my mother-in-law? I could have sworn I tossed it and I doubt it still works. This is going to seriously hinder my garage cleaning progress. Ok, no problem, I’ll just Google ‘how to get rid of an old dryer.’ Great, it looks like I’m not the first one who has run across this problem.
It appears I can just donate the dryer to a charity. Oops, the dryer has to actually work before anyone wants one donated. I guess I could plug it in and see if it actually works. Right about now, the wife comes out to see if I’m still alive in the sweltering heat. I tell her I’m going to drag out the old dryer and see if works. She said not to bother, because it doesn’t. Apparently, that’s why we were gifted her mother’s old one in the first place and at the time we were afraid it might catch fire, due to the smell we noticed occasionally.
If I can’t give it away, I certainly can’t sell it to anyone. Maybe I can recycle it and make a couple of bucks while I’m at it. A quick search estimated a value of about $15 at a scrapyard. Since I don’t have a truck, I’d need to rent one for about $30. That doesn’t make good financial sense. I’d also have to borrow my neighbor’s furniture dolly, which would require me to listen to him rant about politics for a half hour. If we were buying a new dryer, the store we bought it from would merely take the old one with them. We didn’t have the same agreement with my mother-in-law and I’m now irrationally upset about that.
My final choice is a junk removal company. They will come out and fetch the dryer and haul it away for a fee. I give a company with a good rating a call and two hours later I’m speaking with John, the company’s owner. John started his company 10 years ago and said he has experienced good growth each year and his ratings online were quite impressive. He proposed taking the dryer, along with everything in my junk pile for a reasonable cost and I accepted his offer. John and his helper had the dryer and all our other ‘junk’ hauled away in 30 minutes. I want to point out that I was fortunate to be able to get such a last-minute appointment. John had been nearby, finishing another job, when he received my call.
A good junk removal company appears to be an attractive alternative to trying to get rid of unwanted items from your home by yourself. They also serve offices, commercial buildings and will come after estate sales to haul away any leftover ‘collectables’ that no one wanted. Basically, if there’s junk to be hauled away, they will come out and make it all disappear.
Each junk removal company works a little differently. Some are quite environmentally friendly, donating usable items to various charities. What can’t be donated is recycled in an eco-friendly way. Trying to get rid of your own junk in this responsible manner would be a very time-consuming endeavor.
One major advantage junk removal companies have over the typical homeowner, is equipment. John was driving a stake-bed truck when he came to my house. Since we had spoken on the phone and I had described everything I would like hauled away, he knew he didn’t need a larger vehicle. For big trash-outs, large dumpsters are brought in and parked strategically around the premises to be filled. When a dumpster is full, a large truck brings an empty one and the full one is removed. These dumpsters hold more than a typical truck and by using more than one, items can be divided between what can be donated or recycled and merely trash. This allows crews to work smart and keep costs down.
Well, I can check ‘get rid of old dryer’ off my honey-do list. Everyone’s situation is different and I hope this helps you with your next cleaning project.
To find out how to dispose of electronics, click here.
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