Kitchen Renovation Part 3 – Getting Rid of Stuff
Construction waste management – lots of laughs, especially when the waste is from your own kitchen renovation and you are determined to send as little as possible to the landfill.
My bid notes directed that all waste must be diverted from the landfill fill to the extent possible. Submit a waste management plan and identify waste diverted through sale, reuse or recycling; identify all materials that cannot be recycled, salvaged or reused.
That didn’t happen. Yes, the big items – cabinets, countertops and appliances were donated – more about that below – but at least four large bags of trash were hauled out of here and there’s a bunch of small items – light tracks, wire shelving – still to be disposed of. I will likely post them on Free Cycle, a nationwide grassroots network where people can give away unwanted items and find the treasures that others consider trash. I’ve used the site before and it’s terrific.
The contractor was not familiar with construction waste management plans, though there are good examples and guidance on the web, and did not submit one. I have to admit I let it slide because most of the trash in those plastic bags was painted drywall, which isn’t recyclable.
The majority of my old kitchen was donated to Community Forklift, a local center for building material reuse. Donors like me avoid dumping fees and I’ve got a nice tax deduction. Rather than being demolished my old kitchen was deconstructed and will be sold at greatly reduced prices through the Community Forkflift store or re-donated to nonprofits, churches, and temples that fix up homes for the elderly or disadvantaged. Other store customers include bargain hunters, small contractors, property owners and schools, artists, and theatre groups looking for low-cost art materials or props. Even renovators looking for antique trims can find them there. Local governments also benefit as less stuff goes to the landfill, Many communities have resources such as this – find them at Earth 911.
One sticky issue was my old refrigerator/freezer – in immaculate condition EXCEPT that the freezer didn’t work. A blown compressor would run over $600 to replace – hardly worth it with a 17-year old appliance. Community Forklift wouldn’t take it, nor would any other salvage yard or recycling center. But there is a place for everything and a Craigslist ad found a willing buyer.
Kitchen is empty – time to start the installation!