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With all the decisions that you make on a daily basis, it hardly seems necessary to have to put thought into which garbage bag suits your bins and cans best. However picking the right trash bag is important — in fact, it’s important enough for companies to take the choice seriously.

Trash Bags

We’ll review the important points to consider so that you can tackle the decision when you need to pick up new bags from the grocery store. The average family goes through hundreds of garbage bags a year and the average business even more, so take a few minutes to see what works best for you.

Wet Trash Or Dry?

Wet garbage will eventually accumulate liquid at the bottom of the bag, even if it’s only been sitting in the bin for a few minutes. Liners that aren’t waterproof will leak the liquid into the bag, making a major mess for whoever is left to clean it up.

You might be tempted to think that it doesn’t matter since the bag rests inside a garbage bin. However not all garbage containers will keep the liquid from spilling out, and having the bottom of a garbage can alternate from wet to dry will eventually leave unpleasant odours.

Make Sure It’s Size Appropriate

If the garbage bag is too narrow, you may not be able to stretch the opening over the top of the trash bin. Some are often tempted to over-compensate by buying liners that are far too large for the container, which means the bin will be able to support the bag, but you end up wasting the excess plastic material and will add to unnecessary junk in landfills. The liner should hang three to four inches over the lip of the garbage container.

Tip: The general guideline specifies half the circumference of the container for bag width and the height of the container plus half the diameter (for circular bins) or the diagonal (for rectangular bins) for the bag length. If you can’t find a product that matches your dimensions, go a step up so that it’s large enough.

Other useful features that might help include:

  • Clear/colour preferences that might be specified by the city or condominium maintenance so it’s easier to sort the trash from the recycling should they end up in one bag
  • Strong or puncture-proof bags are recommended for sharp objects that might tear weaker bags apart
  • Twist tie or handles that will help you close the bag easier
  • Thickness for heavier trash
  • Opaque bags that will obscure any personal items of trash

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