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How to Choose The Right Cabinet Size for a Trash Pull Out

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So, you’ve found a sweet trash pull out system to use in your home, but aren’t quite sure what cabinet size is needed?

There’s good news.

Standard base cabinet sizes can accommodate lots of popular pull out trash can styles and configurations. Knowing your cabinet type and dimensions is certainly the best place to start. Let’s get into some tips on what to look for…

Here's the Trick (minimum cabinet opening)

The trick with pull out trash cans is this…we need to give them room on both sides (at least 1/2″) to allow them to slide in and out of the cabinet without hitting protruding hinges or side frame walls.

You want to know what the manufacturer or brand lists as the “minimum cabinet opening” for your particular pull out trash can.

But where can you find this so called minimum cabinet opening? Once you determine the name of the manufacturer, you can often times visit their official website and look for product details or download a product catalog.

Here’s one from Rev-A-shelf, a popular brand or trash pull out products…

For example...

If the manufacturer for a certain pull out trash can product says their minimum cabinet opening is 15″ in width, you know your cabinet size needs to be at least 15″ or wider (bigger opening) in order to accommodate the assembled pull out trash can.

Typically, for this example, we would see this product installed inside of a standard 18″ base cabinet.

What Size Cabinet Is Right for a Pull Out Trash Can?

The most ideal cabinet size for a trash pull out is 18 inches wide. This width allows you to fit a double waste bin pull out inside the cabinet. That width would also accommodate 35 quart or 50 quart bin sizes. Keep in mind you’ll need a full height cabinet for a 50 quart bin.

You can also find various dual pull out trash cans that can work in a 15″ width, 21″ width and 24″ width cabinets.

Single bin trash pull outs can work in a 12″ width or 15″ width base cabinet.

Trash Pull Out for a 24 Inch Cabinet

A 24 inch wide base cabinet is on the larger side. However, you can still find an ideal pull out trash can to accommodate the width.

Keep in mind, you’ll also need to know if you have a full height cabinet or a door/drawer style cabinet. If you have the latter, you’ll need a trash pull out with smaller bins around 35 quart instead of 50 quart.

The larger 50 quart bins need a full height cabinet and can hit the door/drawer style cabinets if used in that application.

Maple wood frame, soft-closing slides, two 30 quart bins and assembled dimensions of 20-1/4″ width, 21-3/4″ depth and 19-1/4″ height.

Trash Pull Out for an 18 Inch Cabinet

Both 18 and 15 inch cabinets are ideal for a pull out trash can. This width of cabinet will usually allow for a double bin pull out which is perfect for a busy household that generates a lot of garbage.

The complete kit comes with steel frame, soft-closing slides, cabinet door mounting kit and two bins. Minimum cabinet opening is 15″ wide.

Trash Pull Out for a 12 Inch Cabinet

Got a smaller cabinet? No problem. You can still squeeze a narrow pull out trash can in. For a 12″ cabinet size you’ll be limited, but you can still find a quality product. 

As with all pull out cabinet organizers, we’ll need to know the pull outs assembled width, depth and height to verify compatibility.

For a good starting point, I would recommend a SimpleHuman pull out trash can. The printed assembled width is 9.8″ which will give you some room on each side of a 12 inch cabinet width. It’s 17.7″ depth is also nice for under sink areas too.

Pre-assembled pull out kit includes 20 liter front bin and 15 liter back bin. Minimum cabinet opening width is 10″. Assembled dimensions are 9.8″ wide x 17.7″ deep x 19.1″ high.

Standard Base Cabinet Widths

Many cabinet manufacturers use standard opening dimensions for base cabinets. Common width dimensions are 12″, 15″, 18″, 21″ and 24″. Many trash pull out products work within these dimensions already, but make sure to reference the manufacturers physical dimensions of the trash pull out frame.

Standard Base Cabinet Height and Depth

Most standard base cabinets will be 34.5″ high. If you add another 1.5″ for the countertop, you get a total of 36″ in overall height. Be sure to measure the inside dimensions too.

The depth of standard base cabinets is typically 24″

Popular Pull Out Trash Can Brands

There are several great pull out trash can brands out there. Here are a few to check out.

  • Rev-A-Shelf
  • Simple Human
  • Hafele
  • Knape & Vogt

Bottom Line?

There’s no perfect solution or definitive answer to what cabinet can work. As long as the pull out trash storage has room to operate, you’re good to go.

The trick is gathering the correct measurements of your cabinet width, height and depth and selecting a trash pull out that is smaller than those dimensions.

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