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How to Get Rid of Wood and Lumber

Baseboards, spare 2x4s and old cabinets — we'll tell you how to get rid of them all.

A pile of scrap wood.

Lumber and Wood Disposal

Whether you’re working on a home renovation, cleanout, shed teardown or similar project, you’re probably wondering what to do with the leftover lumber. The answer isn’t always to toss it. Did you know you can sell or recycle lumber, depending on its condition and type? Getting rid of that old fence or wall studs doesn’t have to be a chore — and you may even make a few bucks.

Old baseboards, window frames and cabinetry are a few examples of wood you’ll want to unload from your to-do list. Read on to learn more about how to dispose of your lumber and wood with four different methods.

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4 Ways to Dispose of Lumber


1. Sell It

To sell your unwanted lumber, advertise it online and in a virtual marketplace like Craigslist or Facebook Marketplace. If you're selling more than just lumber, another option is to host a garage sale. You’d be surprised how popular construction supplies are at these events.

Also consider using a local Habitat for Humanity ReStore or general architectural salvage store. You’ll take a small hit on the payout, but it’s worth it if you’re pressed for time or want a simpler solution.

Homeowner loading lumber in truck bed to be sold.

Difference Between Wood Scraps and Lumber

To avoid falsely advertising lumber, remember this simple detail: Wood scraps were used in the design of something specific, like kitchen cabinets. Lumber (often shaped as wooden planks) is used as structural elements to a home or building.

Before you jump onto a marketplace site or speak directly to a buyer, it's important to know the characteristics of salvaged lumber vs. wood scraps. Specifically, lumber (with the right history and condition) can be made into or sold as reclaimed wood — something that could help put more money in your pocket.

Tips for Selling Lumber

Learn the Wood Type

Know if Treated or Untreated

Note the Condition

Price the Item Appropriately

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Pro Tip

Does your lumber have nails? You can use magnets, a claw hammer or pliers to remove them. All of these tools can be found at your local hardware store to rent or buy.

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3. Recycle the Lumber

If your untreated lumber isn’t in such great shape, a recycling company like Reuse Wood can shred it or recycle it. As an alternative, you can cut up the wood with a saw and toss it in your compost pile. Just remember to remove any nails before breaking down the boards.

Use any of the tools below to find a wood and lumber recycling center near you:

Stacks of lumber in a yard to be recycled.
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Keep in Mind

If you’re considering turning your lumber into mulch, remember that even untreated wood chips are nitrogen-packed — great for compost piles but bad for gardens.

Also, never attempt to feed pressure-treated wood into the machine because it’s dense and may contain toxic chemicals.

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A big pile of disposed lumber in a landfill, blue sky and flock of birds.

4. Toss It

Since you typically can’t toss it with your regular trash or set it out on bulk pickup day due to size and condition, you’ll want to research the nearest landfill or transfer station that’ll take lumber scraps. It may cost you a small fee but it’s a good option for getting rid of damaged pieces that can’t be reclaimed or restored.

This is required for any treated wood as it cannot be burned or reused safely because of added chemicals.

Curbside Pickup

Since wood scraps tend to be (or are made to be) smaller and thinner than lumber, you can generally toss them out with your regular trash or wait for bulk pickup.

It’s a better idea to use bulk pickup — whether that’s an extra cost or specific date each month — for larger pieces like kitchen cabinets if the wood is newer than 2004. Just avoid putting out more items than allowed per collection.

Lumber awaiting curbside pickup

Tips for Bulk Collection

Contact Local Garbage Company

Contact Your Local Government

Dumpster containing large amounts of lumber

Rent a Dumpster

Another option is to rent a dumpster. They come in a variety of sizes, can be placed in your driveway for easy access and, with us, you’re quoted an upfront price that includes delivery, pickup, disposal, a generous rental period and a set weight limit. A roll off dumpster is beneficial if you have a lot of unwanted lumber from your project that'll take you multiple trips to the dump.

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Shopping after hours? Too busy to make another call? Book the dumpster you need, when you need it. Order your dumpster online 24/7.

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Getting Rid of More Than Wood and Lumber?

Choose a construction material for detailed disposal options.

Dirt Dirt Tile Tile Pallets Pallets
Carpet Carpet Scrap Metal Scrap Metal Concrete Concrete
Shingles Shingles Insulation Insulation Paint Paint

Lumber Disposal FAQs

Can I burn lumber?

How do you get rid of old pieces of wood?

Can I sell old wood?

Is painted wood the same as treated wood?

How do I dispose of treated lumber scraps?

More Lumber Removal Resources

Getting rid of more than just wood and lumber? Find more disposal guides, project tutorials and dumpster tips below.