If you are looking for ways to make your business’ waste processes more efficient, then you may have been advised to invest in a waste compactor. But what is a compactor, how do they work, and are they the right choice for you?

What is a waste compactor?

A waste compactor is a machine designed to reduce the size or volume of particular waste materials by crushing them into containers. They are particularly useful for businesses that have more non-recyclable waste rather than recyclable materials such as cardboard and plastic. 

Compactors are also very easy to load and operate, and waste does not need to be sorted before it is put into a waste compactor, which makes waste disposal very quick and easy. Different compactor models vary in the force that is used to compact waste, but most units are low-noise, meaning there is minimal disruption to the business when in operation.

How do waste compactors work?

In a compactor, mixed waste is loaded into a chamber, and then once the machine is turned on, a hydraulic metal ram crushes the waste, reducing its surface area and, as such, the space it takes up. The operation of compactors is similar to balers, with the only major difference being no removable bale is produced, instead, the container is taken away for emptying into landfill once it is full.

There are two types of waste compactors, portable and static. Portable compactors are removed from the site, emptied and returned. Static compactors remain on site and the container with the waste is disconnected, taken away, emptied and returned.

What is the difference between a baler and a waste compactor?

Another type of waste management machine you may have heard of is a baler. While both balers and waste compactors are used to better manage waste, balers can be used for recycling purposes, and are great choices for dealing with large quantities of cardboard or plastic. 

Compactors, on the other hand, are used for general waste that cannot be recycled, and waste does not need to be sorted before it can be compacted.

What are the benefits of a waste compactor?

Waste compactors are great for businesses that want to be more efficient and sustainable in their waste disposal practices. This is because having a waste compactor reduces the number of waste collections a business needs to arrange (and pay for). 

Having fewer waste collections means fewer transport emissions, improving your business’s green credentials. A compactor can also save space in landfill and on-site until collection because the waste is more compact. 

Having a waste compactor also cuts operational and labour costs because waste disposal is much more efficient. It achieves better site hygiene and safety because there is no waste spilling out of bins or taking up unnecessary space.


Hopefully, you now understand what a waste compactor is and why they are so beneficial to businesses who want to be more efficient in their waste disposal processes. If you are convinced that a waste compactor is the right choice for your business, you can browse our range of compactors.