UK Skip Hire Prices Guide
Thanks to the Internet (and technology in general), it is no longer a herculean task to find skip hire prices nevertheless, finding the right price for you might be a little tasking.
This is because there are many factors that can affect skip hire prices such as the volume of waste materials, the size of the skip required, skip permits and parking suspensions, number of skip hire companies in the area, their distance from your location, how busy the company is, even the weather conditions (like heavy snowfall).
Companies closer to the location where the skip is needed will obviously offer cheaper prices. The average price for skip hire is between £150 and £300 for 6 – 8 cubic yard skips. The table below shows major cities in the UK and the average skip hire prices for 6 and 8-yard skips.
|Location||6-yard skip||8-yard skip|
A survey has revealed that there is a glaring disparity in skip hire prices across the UK. According to skip hire companies, the major factors responsible for these county-wide variations are: the number of local competitors, how strong the local economy is (which influences how much waste is being generated), and the availability and number of nearby waste recycling facilities.
For example, a quick look at Exeter shows that it appears to have relatively small number of skip operators and not many waste recycling facilities – and so its skip hire prices are among the highest in the UK. In recent time, there has been an increase in skip hire prices.
For the most part this is due to the soaring cost of fuel and proper disposal. A lot of dodgy companies try to avoid these costs and engage in fly-tipping to lower their expenses and increase profits. Use your local directory, or an online skip hire comparison system to get the best prices for skip hire.
Cheap skips are available but you might have to look harder to find them. You can also do some of the tasks yourself like clearing out your office by yourself or selling off some useful items (old garden furniture, or perhaps redundant office equipment) from your project to help you reduce your skip hiring cost.
What kind of materials can be put in a a skip
This is an important point in our education about skips, and one everyone should take note of to avoid problems aka legal issues. Skips are quite useful for “taking out the trash” on a large scale and make waste disposal easy. However, not every waste material that exists can be disposed in a skip. These materials are not allowed to be put in a skip for practical, safety, or legal reasons. A skip firm can choose not to not to take out your skip or may charge you exorbitant fees to do so.
In the UK, you could even be arrested and criminally prosecuted for dumping these materials in a skip. Not to worry, in this section, we will go over those things that are “illegal” skip items, so to speak, plus reasons why these materials are deemed unfit to be placed in a skip and how best to dispose of them.
1. Electrical Equipment and Appliances
Household or business electrical equipment or appliances cannot be disposed of in a skip. They are classified as Waste Electricals (WEEE) and should be transported to an approved Waste Electricals recycling facility for processing. Take note that these items cannot be disposed of like regular waste. Get in touch with a waste electrical disposal company or visit www.nidirect.gov.uk. for proper guidance.
2. Gas tanks and cylinders
No skip company will remove your skip if you disposed a gas tank/cylinder in it, regardless of whether it is full or empty. Gas cylinders contain highly inflammable chemicals, even when empty, and skip companies do not have the authority to move them.
The proper thing to do is to call the company you purchased the gas tank/cylinder from, they will be glad to pick it to recycle or even reuse them. Need more information on gas cylinder disposal? Then visit www.bcga.co.uk and www.environment-agency.gov.uk.
Asbestos is pretty toxic and dangerous and for these reasons it is improper to dispose of asbestos in a skip. There are laws in the UK that prohibit the recycling, reuse, and improper disposal of these materials. Asbestos are removed by licensed specialists.
You should get in touch with them if you need to get rid of asbestos. If you can’t reach them directly, try calling the firm that installed the asbestos in the first place or contact your local government council. If you require more info, visit: www.gov.uk/asbestos-in-home.
All batteries generate electricity from a combination of chemicals and so cannot be disposed of in skip. If you purchased them at a supermarket, see if they have a recycling box for batteries (some gas stations have them too) and drop your used batteries there.
Alternatively, you can visit the nearest centre for battery disposal/recycling. If you have a used car battery you want to get rid of call your local garage for help or call the car battery company if you have one around. Car batteries contain lead and acid which are harm to humans and the environment.
5. Paints, Liquids, Solvents and Fuel
These four substances are not allowed in a skip, for obvious reasons. They are all hazardous waste chemicals that are harmful to the environment and humans. Skip companies are not licensed to dispose of these substances. Other items, such as fluorescent light tube that have mercury, and other dangerous chemicals in them, should not be placed in a skip.
Call the company that installed them in the first place, they should be aware of how to dispose them properly. You can also visit: www.gov.uk/hazardous-waste-disposal to get information on the disposal of hazardous waste in your locality.
6. Medical waste materials
It is a terrible thing to dispose of medical waste materials in a skip. These materials, such as needles (used or unused), expired drugs, human waste, blood, contain substances that pose a risk of contamination and infection, and should not be treated carelessly. Only licensed companies are permitted to remove medical waste items. Get in touch with your local health department for advice if you cannot reach a licensed company.
Gypsum and plasterboard wastes are not allowed to be disposed in a skip. There are steps being taken by the government to recycle these materials but for the meantime they should be carried off to plants that are specially built to recycle them. However, a few skip companies will remove your skip if it contains only plasterboards and nothing else.
It is also illegal to dump tyres in a skip. Ask your local garage for help on how to properly dispose of tyres or visit: www.environment-agency.gov.uk/tyres to learn more. It is very important to know that skip companies get charged a fee (Landfill tax) for dumping things in landfill and so they’d rather channel their resources towards recycling. That’s the reason why they will refuse to remove the materials we have listed above or charge you an extra fee if they have to remove them.
Most of these skip companies are only licensed to remove a handful of waste materials. In a situation where you are unsure about an item you need to dispose of call your skip company or your local area council for advice. Before we go into how skip hiring works and other information surrounding skip hiring, let’s look at common instances where waste is generated and why hiring a skip is important in these instances.
Disposal of garden rubbish
If you currently own or have owned a garden, then you know just much waste even a garden of average size can produce. And so, if you own or have just moved to an apartment with a lawn/garden that is overgrown and overdue for clearing, you need to consider hiring a skip to deal with the waste that will be generated. Why? This is because your regular trash bin may likely not be able to contain the waste generated from garden activities such as mowing, pruning, weeding, etc.
Also, you might find it tedious and stressful, even costly, to take several trips hurling trash bags to and from your local recycling centre. Skip hiring saves you time, energy, and money to achieve the same result. PICTURE This is even more practical and important when you have a large garden or lawn. Generally, as the size of your garden waste increases the cost per cubic yard decreases, and so you pay less to remove more. In addition, the skip company will know what size of skip will be adequate to deal with your garden rubbish saving you from spending extra money hiring more than skip.
Disposal of office waste
Closing, renovating, or relocating an office can generate a significant amount of waste which can include items like papers, redundant equipment, ceiling tiles, fitting and fixtures, and more. This is even larger in a big office or a combination of several offices like in a business complex or old company building. However it is done, you will need to hire a skip to help cope with the waste materials.
Remember some of the fixtures such as lightings (like fluorescent tubes) may contain harmful substances and are illegal to be placed in a skip. A skip company will be able to advise you on what to do about these kinds of materials while efficiently getting rid of the regular office waste. Granted, this can be a very daunting task, especially if you have a large office or a combination of those, and so the best and most efficient way to tackle this is to break the project down into bite size, like this:
- Identify and keep office waste from other items.
- Make an estimation of the size, quantity and duration of hire that would be adequate in dealing with your office trash.
- Get price quotes from as many skip hire companies you can find and select the best price.
- Sensibly and safely load your office waste into the skip.
- Disposal of construction waste
- Construction activities building erection, repair/renovation, or demolition usually generate tons of waste materials. The amount of waste produced usually gets larger the larger the construction site and these materials will not be accepted at the local recycling centre. And so, regardless of the site of your construction site, you need a skip hire company to help you deal with the waste that is produced.
As mentioned above, the amount of waste generated is dependent on the size of the site and so to avoid making costly mistakes, let a skip hire company determine the size of skip you need.
Also ensure that you only work with skip hire companies that are approved waste carriers, and are licensed by the Environment Agency. When hiring a skip for a large construction site, you need to consider making sure a clear path is created to give access to lorries that will be bringing and removing the skip. Create enough room to bring the lorry as close to the construction waste as possible.
Commercial skip hire
When you have to deal with large scale waste such as those from big projects like business complex renovations/clearance, building construction/repair/demolition, retrofit, land reclamation, etc. you need a commercial skip hire. If your organization is large, you might need to schedule a regular skip hire or hire on a long-term basis to help cope with the constant waste that will be produce for the period of the project.
Furthermore, commercial skip hire will make use of larger skips due to the quantity of waste generated. Usually, sizes between 6 and 8 cubic yards are used for commercial situations. However, these skips with larger capacities cannot be used to remove wastes like soil, concrete, bricks, rubble because the weight of the lorry, the skip, and the materials would go beyond the stipulated road weight limit.
If you are going to be using a commercial skip hire, you need to get a skip permit (more on that later) if your skip will not fit into your property and would encroach on public space. Skips are very heavy, especially large ones, and can cause fatal accidents if certain precautions aren’t taken.
You are responsible for making sure your skip is visible (especially if it is encroaching on a road or street) at night or in low light conditions using reflective strip, beacons, or cones. It is also crucial that your skip pose a fire hazard or obstruct the entrance of nearby businesses.
For safety and health reasons, if the waste materials generated by your activity are hazardous and harmful like paint cans, aerosol cans, fluorescent tubes, gas canisters, petrol, diesel, engine oils, or any other substance considered hazardous or inflammable you might need to make another arrangement with a different firm licensed to handle such sensitive materials. Contact your local council for advice on how to get rid of them.
How skip hire works
Above we mentioned and explained three common instances where waste is generated and why skip hiring is important in those instances. The process of hiring a skip is not rocket science, it’s nearly as simple as ordering pizza.
Know your required skip size.
The first thing you need to do before hiring a skip is to make estimation of the size of skip that will contain all the waste you intend you remove, and how long you will have the skip for. You might need a skip permit if the skip will be kept on a public space.
Find an approved skip hire company
As soon as you have determined the size of skip you will need to deal with the waste, you need to find an appropriate skip hire company. The skip hire cost would vary from company to company and so it is up to you to choose which company suits your budget. However, as we mentioned earlier, be sure that the firm you choose has an Environmental Agency license and is an Approved Waste Carrier.
Order for the skip
When you have decided on what company you want to work with, call them and give them the necessary details for delivery such as the location where the skip would be needed, the size you need, and how long you will have it for. Depending on the time the call is placed, the distance from the skip hire company to the site, the size of the skip, amount of paper work needed (as in the case of getting a skip permit), amongst other factors, the skip will arrive the same day.
But on the average, it will be delivered the next day. Ensure that there is adequate access for the skip lorry to get into the premises, just in case you now around when the skip arrives.
How long can you keep a skip?
Before you begin that home, garden, business, school, or construction project that will generate waste that will require a skip, you need to run estimates of how long you will need to keep the skip. This is crucial, as a mistake in the aspect would see you rushing your project or re-hiring the skip at an extra cost. After estimating the amount of time you’ll need the skip for, it is a good practice to add one more day to your estimated duration. This will help you buffer the effect of any unanticipated delays in the project and also to allow you ample time to properly finish your project without rushing.
Furthermore, in the instance where you do not have enough space on your property to accommodate the skip such that it will occupy a portion of public space such as curb, street, etc. you need to apply for a skip permit. A single skip permit allows a maximum of 28 days for your skip to encroach on public property, which is enough time for small and medium-sized projects. However, if you need more time such as for large projects, you can apply for an extension/renewal.
Finding a licensed skip hire company
It is required by law that any company that collects wastes be registered and approved by the Environment Agency in the UK. And so it is of utmost importance that you only work with an approved skip hire company.
And why is this important?
It is because fly-tipping (the illegal dumping of refuse in an unauthorized location) is a real thing and has serious consequences in the long run. You could be in very serious trouble with the law (jail time or heavy fines) if you have a non-licensed company disposes your waste improperly.
According to skiphirenetwork.com, there’s a lot of information to be found in DEFRA’s latest press release, from conviction rates to clean-up costs. The stats themselves cover the 2016/17 year, and were provided by local councils up and down the country.
Here at Skip Hire Network, we’ve taken a good long look at them, and picked out some of the key information:
- In 2016/17, councils dealt with 1 million fly-tipping incidents, a 7% increase from the previous year.
- The most common place for fly-tipping was on highways, which happened in around half of total incidents.
- Household waste was the most common type of waste being dumped, involved in around 66% of all incidents.
- The most common size category was ‘a small van load’, followed closely by ‘equivalent to a car boot’ (33% and 27% respectively).
- £57.7 million was the estimated cost of clearance for authorities in England over the past year, a 15% increase from the previous year.
“The number of fixed penalty notices (essentially, on-the-spot fines) increased by 56%, and it’s now the second most common enforcement action after investigations”.
(Taken from https://www.skiphirenetwork.com/news/new-stats-from-defra-show-that-uk-fly-tipping-is-on-the-rise/) Before any waste disposal company removes your skip full of trash, ask them for their Environmental Agency license. If you find that too impolite, you could ask them for their registration/approval/waste carrier number over the phone, then call the Environment Agency with that number to confirm if they are really registered and licensed.
Here’s the number to reach the agency on: 03708 506506.
Skip hire safety
(Taken from the Health and Safety Executive website: http://www.hse.gov.uk/waste/skiphire.htm) Workplace transport accidents are one of the most common causes of serious accidents and fatalities in the waste management industry. Significant among them are accidents that relate to transport related lifting operations. Lifting operations typically involve hoists fitted to refuse collection vehicles, lifting equipment fitted to skip loaders, lifting equipment on hookloader vehicles, skips and other containers.
There are no national standards for the manufacture of skips and containers. However, a number of commonly used industry standards exist which are produced by and available from the Container Handling Equipment Manufacturers Association (CHEM). CHEM represents a number of manufacturers and suppliers providing equipment to the waste industry.
Its members adopt, where appropriate, the standards outlined in a range of documents they produce. Guidance on Skip and container safety in waste management and recycling has been produced in consultation with the Waste Industry Safety and Health Forum (WISH).
It does not aim to be comprehensive but gives examples of good practice within the industry. This guidance is for designers/ manufacturers, buyers, users and maintenance staff who work with skips and containers used with skip loader and hook loader vehicles. (Read more at: http://www.hse.gov.uk/waste/skiphire.htm)
Workplace transport accidents relating to traffic movements are one of the most common causes of serious accidents and fatalities in the waste management industry. By the very nature of operations carried out at a waste transfer station, it is important that workplace transport activities are adequately controlled. There is general guidance on Safe transport in waste management and recycling facilities which is aimed at waste management facility managers, their supervisory staff, and safety professionals within waste management companies.
In addition, there is specific guidance relating to Hand sorting of recyclables (‘totting’) with vehicle assistance. This guidance provides advice on how to eliminate or reduce the risk of injury/fatality caused by mobile plant (particularly mechanical shovels) striking pedestrians (e.g. totters). For more information, please visit: http://www.hse.gov.uk/waste/skiphire.htm to read the guidance and acquire additional information.
Skip hiring is the best way to get rid of large quantities of waste materials that cannot be removed using your regular trash bin or your vehicle. It is time-saving, cost-effective and safe. Waste produced by large projects like building construction/demolition, office renovations, retrofitting, etc. can be really bulky and so it is important to hire the appropriate skip with the right size and weight capacity to safely transport the waste to the recycling centre.
Our team of at Proskips are happy to offer advice on any aspect of skip hire. If you’ve got a question or would like to hire a skip, contact us today.