Making it Easier to Take Out the Trash

I know that no one likes to take out the garbage in my house. How do I know this? I know it because we seem to be able to push our 9 gallon trash can to hold 12 gallons! Don’t do the math, it is just one of life’s unsolved mysteries.

When this mystery trashcan reaches these epic proportions, the bag of trash resists all efforts to remove it from the can. It holds tight to the can liner bringing it up with itself. I’ve only known one other thing in this world that can hold on this tight. And that would be my son at age two as he death gripped my shirt while the babysitter tried in vain to remove him.

Releasing the trash’s grip takes some practice, I use the this little dance I call the Can Can Jig. (Not to be confused with your parent’s Can-Can.)

Here is what it looks like:

One foot on the floor, the other raised over your waist height trying to keep the trash can liner from coming with the trash bag as it is extracted from the can. Yeah, I’m still working on mastering the move myself. It is not for amateurs.

Okay, all kidding aside, I found the cure for the stubborn trash bag who didn’t want to be emptied. I’d heard about this trick a few times but never tried it until now.


  • Drill
  • Drill bit – medium size (approximately 1/4″)
  • Safety glasses

Step 1. Empty the trashcan (less you drill holes in your bag of trash. Gross!)

Step 2. Take out the plastic trashcan liner if you have one. If not, this will work just as well if you have a plastic trashcan without a bucket liner.

Step 3. Drill 3-4 holes into the bottom of the liner (or can if you don’t have a liner).

Drill the holes about 1″ above the bottom just in case you ever have any leakage (just thinking about it makes me gag.)

Step 4. Insert the can liner back into the can. Put a trash bag into the liner. Now wait for that garbage can to fill beyond capacity again.

And voila! The bag slides out easily. I almost wish I had some kind of bet with Pretty Handsome Guy to see who could extract the trash faster. You know I’d time him before drilling the holes and then unbeknownst to him I would add this quick fix and let him time me as I whipped that trash out no problem.

And now for the dramatic before and after pictures! Ooooo and ahhhhh:

Which leads me to just one question: “How will I practice the Can Can Jig now?”


  1. Do you know if this works with leaf bags? My husband fights with that every fall. That 30 gallons BRUT can is way to big to do the dance with!

  2. What a weird and wonderful idea!

    Oh and probably a good idea you DIDN’T time Pretty Handsome Guy, then yourself, because if you won he’d let you do it EVERY time!!!

  3. I have a trash can just like that and I will be drilling holes this weekend … thanks for the tip!

  4. Ha! Such an easy solution, and yet I did the Can Can Jig for years.

  5. Wow, such a doh! moment when someone else points it out. Thanks! :)

  6. That is a great tip! We have a trash compactor and only have to take out the trash once a week (on garbage day) and it has!!

  7. Oh my Gosh! You are Pretty Handy!!! I don’t even have this cool trash can yet (I’ve been wanting one), but when I get it, I’m gettin’ out the drill. Thanks…I just love these nifty ideas.

  8. Don’t you just love solving a problem like this yourself. Good job. Many of the things I post are about solving a specific problem I am dealing with and I love to fix things. I would love for you to stop by and check out a few of my posts.

  9. We too do the Can Can Jig…but I’ll be using your idea, thanks for sharing that!

  10. When I replace our trash cans, I want one just like this! I’ll keep that in mind. You’re such a smarty…I would have just struggled with that forever without thinking of your solution!

  11. Brilliant!

  12. I’ve done this for years and, yes, it works with my big Rubbermaid garbage can I use to hold the leaf bag, too. It used to be embarrassing to be out in the yard fumbling with the bag, turning the can every which way, struggling to get the danged bag out. I don’t know why trash cans don’t come with little “poke out” areas so you have the choice to use them or not.

  13. This is a great idea! Another solution if you don’t have a drill handy is to punch a small hole about the size of your pinky into the side of bag at the top. The hole releases air and makes it easier to pull out bag.

  14. Duh! What a great idea! We have the exact same bin and I always have to do the bin dance, will be doing this later! (pinned it to help others too :) )

  15. Great thinking! Can I say that I like your garbage can?
    The top of mine keeps falling inside, it’s a big pain!

  16. So I did this, and it totally worked! I plan to share it on my blog (people have to know about this!) and of course will link to your blog for credit. What a great fix!!

  17. What a simple idea, but so smart!!

  18. Great idea! We have a regular plastic can, will have to give it a try.

  19. I have this exact same trashcan and the exact same problem. I can’t wait to try this!

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