Keeping your bin clean.
Wheelie bins and kitchen bins are an essential fact of life, but by definition, as receptacles for waste, they are bound to attract insects and germs, so they need to be kept clean.
When it comes to the kitchen bins – including recycling waste bins, food caddies and general rubbish, it’s essential to make sure you get one with a lid. Swing lids are better than no lid at all, but they can get messy, so a pedal bin is better because they minimise hand contact while keeping unpleasant smells in and insects out.
A good daily habit is to wipe the lid and sides with kitchen roll and antibacterial spray while a weekly deep clean using disinfectant, hot water and a good scrub will remove any missed dirt and unpleasant smells.
For more homespun solutions, bicarbonate of soda sprinkled at the bottom of the bin with a little water absorbs smells and dirt; lemon, lime or orange peel can be a good temporary freshener and scented bin liners can be a little strong but do go a long way towards concealing unpleasant odours.
For the wheelie bin, if you have a pressure washer, it’s a quick, powerful and effective solution. An overfilled or strongly smelling bin, besides attracting the inevitable flies and wasps, can be a magnet for foxes and other vermin.
To minimise the attraction, rinsing tins, bottles and jars and squeezing out air from bags will minimise the decomposition rate and the subsequent smell, as will placing the bin in the shade. As an extra, just like the candles, citronella oil on the lid can help to repel flies.
A monthly wash using a bleach solution to half fill the bin, swill round and then leave to soak for a while will keep it clean. Having disposed of the dirty water, the bin can be rinsed again and then turned upside down to drain.
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