Introduction: How to Hide Trash Cans While Keeping Them Easily Accessible
When I moved into my house I immediately had a problem - where to put the trash cans? In the garage? They take up too much space - and the smell would waft right into the adjoining kitchen. I didn't want to place them out on the deck for the same reasons.
This is what I came up with, and it's served us well for over 10 years now. I placed the cans on the ground next to the deck, attached a rope to both lids and ran it through an eye bolt under the deck railing. When I want to put trash in a can I just lift up quickly on the rope, which lifts the lid over it's center of gravity, at which point the rope holds it in place. I drop the trash bag into the can from above, then give the rope another tug and it comes back over center and drops neatly into place.
In the 10 years I've had this setup, I can only think of one time that I noticed a smell on the deck, when the wind was just right.
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Step 1: A Place to Park 'em
Since I have 2 cans, I used some boards to build a rectangular frame a few inches larger than the footprint of the 2 cans when sitting side by side and about 6 inches deep. I then filled this with a couple of bags of concrete mix and voila - instant pad for the cans. (okay, it actually took a day).
Step 2: Attachment Points on Cans
Here you can see that I attached a couple of links of chain to the lids in order to provide an easy attachment point for the swivel bolt snaps tied on either end of the rope.
This allows me to easily and quickly disconnect/reconnect them on trash day when I move them down to the street for emptying.
Adjust the rope length so that it allows one lid to go several inches past center of gravity while the other is closed. OR you could just use 2 pieces of rope and tie both ends of each, but I like the complex/elegant nature of this way. It's a Yin/Yang thing. :-)
My arms are long enough I just reach over the top of the cans and unclip the full one. I then reattach the rope to the other can, so that both ends are on the same can. That way we can continue to use one can while the other is waiting at the end of the driveway to be emptied by the "solid waste disposal transport technicians".
Step 3: Operation
To use this setup, you just give a yank upwards on the rope and the lid on the can on that side comes up enough to go past center of gravity and the lid will rest suspended by the rope.
Drop your bags in the can, then give another yank and the lid comes back over center and drops into place. Of course this could be done with one can as well but since I have 2...
Also note that from the deck you can't see the cans, nor is the rope noticeable.
Anyway, this was my solution to the problem, hope this helps someone.