What are Garbage Cans Called?

Garbage cans, also known as trash cans, waste bins, or rubbish bins, are integral parts of our daily lives.

They are used to store and dispose of our household and/or public waste in a hygienic and organized manner.

Types of Garbage Cans

There are various types of garbage cans available in the market today.

Each designed for a specific purpose.

Some of the most common types are:

Residential garbage cans: These are small-sized cans that are used in households for the disposal of household waste. They come in a variety of shapes and sizes and can be made of plastic, metal, or other materials.

residential garbage can near house

Commercial garbage cans: These are larger in size and are used in public places such as streets, parks, and office buildings. They are usually made of metal and have a strong and durable build to withstand the wear and tear of constant use.

Industrial garbage cans: These are extra-large garbage cans that are used in factories, warehouses, and other industrial settings. They are made of heavy-duty materials and have a high capacity to store and dispose of large amounts of waste.

Recycling bins: These bins are used to store recyclable materials such as plastic, glass, and metal. They are usually marked with the recycling symbol and come in different colors to distinguish between different types of recyclables.

The History of Garbage Cans

Garbage cans have a long history dating back to ancient civilizations. The ancient Greeks and Romans used clay pots or metal bins to store and dispose of their waste. In the Middle Ages, people used to throw their trash and waste into large pits or dump it on the streets. It was not until the 19th century that the concept of the modern garbage can emerged. The first patent for a garbage can was issued in 1884 to a man named George E. Waring Jr. This marked the beginning of the modern garbage can as we know it today. Prior to this, garbage was either thrown into large pits or left on the streets. The invention of the garbage can revolutionized waste management and helped to keep communities clean and hygienic.

Waring's patent was for a cylindrical tin can with a foot pedal that opened the lid. This allowed people to dispose of their waste without having to touch the can, which helped to reduce the spread of germs. The design of the garbage can has evolved over the years, but the basic principles remain the same. Today, garbage cans are made of a variety of materials including plastic, metal, and even wood, and come in different shapes and sizes to suit different needs.

Who Invented Bins?

Waste receptacles or "bins" have been in use for waste management and disposal for thousands of years, with historical evidence dating back to the ancient civilizations of Greece and Rome. The concept of a container to hold and dispose of waste is a simple one and it would be hard to pinpoint one person responsible for its invention.

It was in the 19th century when waste management became a serious problem in urban areas due to population growth and industrialization. This was when the concept of a modern waste management system was first introduced.

A dustbin (an early form of garbage bin) was first introduced in England in the 1870s by the English sanitary reformer Edwin Chadwick, who advocated for improved public health and sanitation practices.

As for the round garbage can with a lid, it was invented by the Canadian inventor Lloyd Groff Copeman, who also patented the rubber ice cube tray amongst others. In 1904, he invented an animal-proof round can with a lid, that was produced by the Indiana Wire and Specialty Company.


In conclusion, garbage cans, also known as trash cans, wood waste bins, or rubbish bins, are an essential part of our daily lives. They help us store and dispose of our waste in a hygienic and organized manner, and come in various shapes, sizes, and materials to meet different needs.


What are the different types of garbage cans?

There are several different types of garbage cans available, including:

Kitchen garbage cans: These are small, lidded garbage cans that are used to store and contain waste material generated in the kitchen, such as food scraps and packaging.

garbage bins near sea

Outdoor garbage cans:

These are larger garbage cans that are designed for outdoor use and are often used to store and contain waste material generated in public spaces, such as parks, streets, and sidewalks.

Recycling bins:

These are specialized garbage cans that are used to store and contain recyclable materials, such as paper, cardboard, plastic, and glass.

Compost bins: These are specialized garbage cans that are used to store and contain the organic waste material, such as food scraps and yard waste, that can be composted and used as natural fertilizers.

How should I use a garbage can?

To use a garbage can properly, follow these steps:
Place the garbage can in a convenient location where it will be easy to access.

When disposing of trash or waste material, make sure to properly separate recyclable items from non-recyclable items, if using a recycling bin.

Place the trash or waste material in the garbage can, making sure to close the lid securely to prevent any odors or pests from escaping.

When the garbage can becomes full, dispose of the contents according to your local waste management guidelines. This may involve placing the garbage can out on the curb for pickup or taking it to a designated drop-off location.

trash bin on street

How do I maintain a garbage can?

To maintain a garbage can, follow these steps:
Regularly empty the garbage can to prevent the build-up of odors and pests.

Clean the inside and outside of the garbage can regularly to prevent the build-up of dirt and grime. This can be done using a mild soap and water solution and a scrub brush or sponge.

If the garbage can has a removable liner, replace it regularly to keep the inside of the can clean and hygienic.

If the garbage can has a built-in deodorizer, make sure to replace it regularly to keep odors at bay.

If the garbage can is made of metal, be sure to prevent rust from forming by cleaning and drying it thoroughly after washing and applying a rust inhibitor as needed.

Author - Nurlana Alasgarli
Nurlana Alasgarli           

Content Specialist

Nurlana Alasgarli is a professional copywriter with more than 6 years of creative writing experience. Having lived and experienced all over the world, there are many writing genres that Nurlana follows, including nature, arts and crafts and the outdoors. Nurlana brings life to content creation, captivating her readers.


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