Why Neglected Trash Chutes Are Dangerous

Most people install trash chutes as a means of adding convenience to daily life, whether they install them in single-family homes, multi-family dwellings, or commercial or industrial buildings. They save time by allowing people to drop trash into the opening at a convenient location in the home rather than trekking outside to the trash cans every day or two.

Naturally, users can create foul conditions in trash chutes by the items they drop in. These chutes rely on gravity to take trash bags to a central location for pick-up by trash collection services. As a result, these bags of garbage can tumble and pick up speed, tearing and breaking open along the way. This, of course, can lead to some pretty ugly messes, not to mention alarming odors.

The point is that having a trash chute will require some ongoing maintenance. We all enjoy having hot water on tap, and in order to get it, we have to maintain a hot water heater. The same principle applies to having a trash chute. If you want the convenience it adds to your life, you either need to schedule regular trash chute cleaning or hire a professional service to do it for you.

Lest you think the option is open to debate or that it’s not a serious concern, you should know that failing to clean your trash chute regularly could actually be dangerous. Here are a few hazards that may arise when you neglect your trash chute maintenance.

Air Quality

You might think the rotten smell coming from your filthy trash chute is nothing more than a mere annoyance. Unfortunately, it could be much worse – it could be harmful to your health.

Foul odors are a sign that something is wrong. When trash spills all over your chute and the odors invade your home, it’s a sign that your interior air quality is suffering as a result. Consider that the odor is a warning mechanism.

Think about the items you throw away – there’s a reason they go into the trash in the first place. It’s because you don’t want rotten food and used product containers cluttering your home. You also don’t want the harmful toxins and particulates they generate to invade your interior air and compromise the health of your family.

True, you don’t want the embarrassing and repellant odors, either. However, the bigger concern is what those odors signify – polluted interior air.

Bacteria/Mold Growth

When you allow garbage to stagnate and fester, there’s a good chance it will attract some attention. Not only will the inhabitants of your home notice the smell, but so too will organisms that treat it as a food source. We’re talking about bacteria and mold, and neither one is desirable in your home.

Both bacteria and mold growth can be problematic for humans from a health standpoint. Bacteria can invade our bodies, leading to infections of all types, and mold colonies produce spores that can lead to respiratory and other health issues, or exacerbate existing health problems.

If you want to protect yourself and your loved ones from the health issues that could result from bacterial growth or mold infestations, it’s important to clean your trash chute regularly, and especially when you start to notice odors or visible mold growth.

Pest Infestations

Bacteria and mold aren’t the only organisms that use trash for food. It could also attract a variety of pests such as insects, rodents, and other animals. These critters may see a food source or an attractive place to nest.

Such infestations can damage your home and in some cases compromise the health of inhabitants. Any number of diseases are spread by insects and vermin. A clean and sterile trash chute should help to keep these pests at bay.

Fire Hazard

Most homeowners are aware of the fact that regular dryer vent cleaning is essential to preventing possible dryer fires. What you may not know is that neglecting to clean your trash chute could present a fire hazard, as well.

If combustible materials are spilled on or lodged in the chute and they overheat or come into contact with other hazardous materials, a fire could be the least of your worries. The point is that there could be dangers lurking in your trash chute should you fail to properly maintain it. If you want the benefits of having a trash chute without the worries, all you have to do is stick to a regular cleaning and maintenance schedule.