Bright Bins: making your trash can less obnoxious
When Doyle Butterfield launched Bright Bins, a trash can cleaning service, a month ago, one of his first clients was an upscale housing complex.
Everything looked well maintained and clean until he opened the trash storage area.
“The smell just hit you,” he said.
Inside the rubbish area, he found flies, roaches and maggots.
“It looked like it had not been cleaned in 17 years,” he said.
Now Bright Bins services the complex once a month, not only cleaning the bins, but also maintaining the trash storage area.
As he has taken on new clients, he has found the state of this trash storage area to be typical.
“Everyone wants to use it but no one wants to clean it,” he said.
He mulled the idea for a trash bin cleaning service for several years.
“I recently did some research and learnt that the term ”trash tin cleaning“ has been on the rise in online search engines,” he said.
Mr Butterfield thought this was partly due to the pandemic.
“Covid-19 made everybody really aware of the fact that everything we touch carries bacteria and diseases,” he said.
Also, with many people still working from home, at least part of the week, there is more garbage accumulating at home.
Mr Butterfield saw opportunity. A month ago, he started putting up Facebook advertisements and flyers for Bright Bins.
“There was quite a bit of interest,” he said.
He invested in an electric power-washer, hoses, some scrub brushes and a 20-gallon water container.
“It takes about two gallons of water to power wash a bin,” he said. “I can do about ten bins with the water in that container.”
At the moment he stores everything in the back of his car, but he would eventually like to get his own van.
“We spray down the bins with a surfactant and degreaser, then rinse it off with water,” he said. “By the end of the process it is cleaned, sanitised and deodorised.”
Mr Butterfield said the process not only makes your trash tin smell better, it also makes it less attractive to pests like roaches, flies and even rodents.
Prices vary depending on how frequently the bins are serviced. In a once a month situation, he charges $24.95 for the first trash tin, and $13 for the second one. For a one-off cleaning, the price is $65 for the first one, and $15 for the next.
“We come along after the trash has been collected,” he said. “We send you a photograph of the cleaned tins after and say your trash tin has been ‘bright-binned’.”
This is not his first business.
“I consider myself a serial entrepreneur,” he said.
Twenty years ago he and a business partner ran office paper shredding enterprise Guardian Data Solutions.
“We thought we were in security but a lot of people said we were actually dealing with trash,” he said. “So this business is reminiscent of that. That was a good little business. After ten years we sold our business to Central Filing. Now the company is called Origin.”