Explore 10 reasons why adding lid locks to your equipment or promoting the use of lid locks can lead to increased customer satisfaction, higher environmental standards and overall cleaner trash.
By Justin Blazer

Most trash producers interact with their carts daily and each has their own unique trash woes. Adding lid locks to trash cans will solve common trash problems and improve the overall utility of today’s waste carts. In understanding the core benefits of lid locks, you’ll be better prepared to deploy locks, latches, or straps where they are needed, when they are needed. Effectively using lid locks will lead to happier customers and cleaner operations. Here are 10 ways lid locks could improve anyone’s waste cart.

#1: Lid Locks Prevent Litter and Ensure Waste Flows to its Intended Destination
When a customer places their waste or recycling in a cart, they plan for it to be collected and sent off to a landfill, recycling center, etc. This is how the system works. So, when waste falls out of a cart prior to collection, it presents a problem: waste that was properly disposed of, has now become litter. Problems create opportunities for solutions. Lid locks improve the value of carts by preventing litter. Lid locks ensure that your customer’s waste arrives where it belongs and does not end up in our shared environment.

#2: Lid Locks Prevent Critters from Accessing and Consuming Trash
Critters break into garbage cans every night and day. The mess they cause is a burden for trash can owners who must clean it up. Pests tear apart bags and quickly cause grimy bins. These occurrences seem natural, but are they? Effective lid locks are used to prevent unwanted access by critters of all sizes. As a result, customers enjoy hassle-free waste storage and animals avoid consuming garbage. Use lid locks to prevent raccoons, crows, bears, rats, squirrels, dogs, cats, javelinas, foxes, possums, coyotes, seagulls, etc. from enjoying the contents within.

#3: Lid Locks Prevent Wind from Blowing Trash Out of Carts
Where there are strong winds, there is the potential for trash to become a mess. Gusts of wind topple containers and fling open lids. The wind then blows litter out of cans and down the street. Sometimes, wind will blow detached lids far away from their corresponding can. Coastal communities are particularly vulnerable to the effects of strong wind. On the coast, when litter gets blown around, it has a higher chance of ending up in a waterway. Most lid locks are able to effectively secure lids and prevent litter caused by wind.

Lid locks are packed with utility and improve the aesthetic of waste carts.
Photo courtesy of Blazer Brand.

#4: Lid Locks Clamp Lids to a Create Strong Seal that Reduces Odor and Insects
Flies and trash will always go hand-in-hand, but it may be possible to mitigate some heavier insect infestations when cart lids are properly sealed shut. Lid locks can help create a proper seal. As mentioned earlier, animals rip open bags and leave trash exposed. When this happens, insects come in and make a cart their home. No one enjoys a bin filled with maggots on a hot summer day. Carts with intact lids, equipped with a lid lock will prevent the “lord of the flies” nightmare and improve cart cleanliness in general.

#5: Lid Locks Stop Unsightly Overflowing Bins
Overflowing bins are a common theme on collection day. Modern consumers pack carts to the brim and beyond. Adding lid locks to trash and recycling carts will eliminate a significant amount of overflow. Some lid locks are capable of cranking the lid down on overflow and holding the lid shut. Without overflowing carts, communities will be cleaner and trash will not look so dirty.

#6: Lid locks Shut the Lid to Contain Loose Recyclables and Keep Cardboard Dry
Lid locks protect all carts against wind and overflow, but there are added benefits when looking at recycling carts. First, haulers can reasonably request customers to forego using plastic recycling bags to contain their recyclables. With the help of lid locks, customers can place their loose recyclables in a cart and trust that they will stay in that cart. Additionally, locks keep lids shut to prevent rain from soaking cardboard prior to collection. Lid locks increase the value of recyclables.

#7: Lid Locks Allow More Waste to Fit into Fewer Carts
When space is a constraint for customers, finding room for another trash can is at the bottom of their list of priorities. What if garbage can owners could fit more waste in fewer bins? There would be fewer cans to collect and maintain. Carts may be heavier, but most modern trucks are equipped with assisted lifting mechanisms and modern carts are built strong. Urban customers may be particularly interested in using less square footage for the same amount of waste.

#8: Lid Locks Keep Trash in the Cart When it Falls Over
Trash cans fall over. There are countless causes; wind, pests, bad drivers, uneven ground and late-night vandals are just a few. When a cart without a lid lock falls over, it can create a mess. Adding lid locks to carts can ensure that that all trash placed in a cart remains in the cart.

#9: Lid Locks Improve Community Aesthetic
When litter falls out of a trash can, it is a burden for the individual responsible for cleaning it up. Unfortunately, some individuals do not clean up litter that falls out of their bin. Others are not around to clean it up in time. In either case, collectors also do not want to clean up the mess. Litter travels, what was originally one person’s mess, is now a community’s mess. Cleaner communities are possible with cleaner waste bins. Adding lid locks to waste carts prevents a wide variety of litter throughout cities, communities and neighborhoods.

#10: Lid locks Encourage Innovating the Capabilities of Garbage Trucks
Some lid locks are designed to cause as little disruption to collection processes as possible. Often, these lid locks are willing to sacrifice performance against previously mentioned cart problems. Other lid locks encourage innovation. Could mechanisms be attached to trucks to unlock locks? What else can trucks do? Could arms grab cardboard or extra bags? Allowing lid locks to exist opens avenues to improving the entire waste collection process with new technology.

With the benefits of lid locks in mind, you can answer the question: “which customers stand to gain the most from adding a lock, latch, or strap to their carts?” Lid locks provide an opportunity to help waste customers be as happy as possible with their carts and service. In the mind of consumers, waste haulers are increasingly revered for their contributions to our modern society. Today, some companies provide waste carts; what could companies begin to provide tomorrow? Could waste companies eventually be the primary source of durable consumer goods designed to help people waste properly? Lid locks are the first step in a clean direction. | WA

Justin Blazer is the Head of Product Development and Operations at Blazer Brand LLC (Pittsburgh, PA). He and his brother invented Blazer Brand’s first product, the Strong Strap, a garbage can utility strap (US Pat. No. 10,294,022). Blazer Brand is committed to developing innovative consumer tools for clean, green and secure waste streams. Blazer Brand is always seeking new projects/products/partnerships to complement its current offerings. Justin can be reached at (412) 252-2114 or e-mail [email protected]. For more information e-mail [email protected] or visit blazerbrand.com.
Interested in learning about the different types of lid locks available? Check out ‘An Introduction to Garbage Can Lid Locks’ in the May 2020 issue of Waste Advantage Magazine or visit wasteadvantagemag.com/an-introduction-to-garbage-can-lid-locks