Unclutter Your Kitchen Island with Pull Out Trash Cans

A clean and organized kitchen is the dream for many homeowners. But with limited space, it can be tricky to keep trash and recycling bins out of sight while still making them easily accessible. The solution? Incorporating pull out trash can storage right into your kitchen island!

Kitchen islands with integrated trash storage are growing in popularity thanks to their functionality and ability to declutter. By building your own DIY version, you can create custom pull out bins sized perfectly for your space. We’ll walk through the entire process step-by-step, from constructing the cabinetry to adding those finishing touches.

Hidden Trash Storage Trend

Pull out trash drawers first started gaining attention a few years ago as more homeowners sought ways to incorporate waste management without sacrificing style or precious real estate in their kitchens. Today, islands with this clever hidden storage rank among the most popular kitchen remodeling projects.

Unlike freestanding bins that can clutter up floors, pull out trash storage seamlessly integrates into existing cabinetry. It keeps garbage and recycling out of sight until you need access. Despite their growing popularity, built-in trash drawers are still a unique feature that will impress any guests.

Benefits of Pull Out Trash Storage

Integrated trash storage offers several prime advantages over traditional bins:

kitchen island with pull out trash
  • Keeps counters clutter-free for more prep space
  • Trash cans are hidden from sight in closed cabinet
  • Easy to access cans when open instead of bending down
  • Custom storage fits all trash can sizes

DIY Kitchen Island Inspiration

Constructing your own kitchen island with integrated pull out trash storage is an achievable DIY project. Before getting started, it helps to find inspiration from completed projects showcasing the features you’d like to recreate.

Key Features to Look For

Some signature features that take an island from basic to spectacular include:

  • Butcher block countertop: Gorgeous wood tabletop that’s both stylish and ultra-durable
  • Trash/recycling pull out drawers: Custom-built storage with commercial grade slides or tracks
  • Cabinet doors: Conceal trash when closed for a streamlined look
  • Spacious storage: Room for multiple cans, adjustable shelves or standalone recycling bins
  • On-trend accents: Open shelving, marble inlays, custom hardware pulls

Use other stunning kitchen islands for inspiration. Then personalize your own design by picking the elements you love best!

Building Your Own Pull Out Trash Island

While constructed islands with pull out trash storage can be purchased, they often come with premium price tags. If you’re willing to put in some elbow grease, you can DIY a similar custom piece and save considerably.

Materials and Tools Needed

You’ll need the following building materials and hardware:

  • Plywood or solid wood for cabinet box and face frame
  • Tabletop/Butcher block wood slabs
  • Drawer slides and runners
  • Locking casters or wheels
  • Door hinges and pulls/handles

And power tools like:

  • Circular or table saw
  • Jigsaw
  • Power drill and driver bits
  • Orbital sander

Constructing the Cabinet Frame

The first construction step is building a sturdy cabinet frame out of wood boards. Refer to specific cut lists and dimensions tailored for your desired island size. Remember to account for the overhang space needed for butcher block countertops.

Use pocket holes, wood glue and clamps when assembling the side panels, face frames and cross supports. Check for square to ensure proper alignment as you work. We recommend using our pull out trash drawer dimensions to size box openings if duplicating.

Allowing Room Inside for Storage

When sizing, factor in space needed for the pull out mechanisms plus clearance so trash cans slide smoothly. Many DIY designs allow for two to three 36+ quart commercial cans. But the interior height and width can be adjusted to fit larger garbage bins if desired.

Adding Pull Out Trash Drawer

The signature element that makes this project unique is the integrated pull out trash drawer. After your cabinet boxes are built, it’s time to add this functional centerpiece.

Installing Drawer Slides

Heavy duty full extension drawer slides with smooth ball bearing rolls are best. Mount them securely on each side towards the back of the opening. Commercial grade options like side mount cantilever slides withstand weight better.

Integrating Trash Can Structure

Next, build a frame structure that fits snugly into the drawer cavity. It should have the same dimensions so it moves in/out while also integrating vertical dividers to hold trash bins in place securely. Use durable plywood reinforced with L brackets.

For the drawer face, construct a wooden front panel sized to the opening that attaches to the slides. Add handles or custom pulls of your choosing to finish.

Applying Finishes

Once construction is complete, take time to meticulously sand cabinetry using gradually finer grit sandpaper. Thoroughly wipe away dust before finishing.

Staining and Sealing

Consider if you’d like to simply seal the wood grain with polyurethane or first stain to the desired tone. Multiple coats often achieve best protection and sheen.

Oiling Butcher Block

Use food-grade mineral oil followed by beeswax paste to finish and maintain your butcher block countertop. This nourishes the wood and creates a silky, durable surface.

Functional Details

Don’t overlook small yet important details that impact functionality.

Installing Casters

Quality locking casters allow effortlessly moving heavy islands when cleaning while keeping them stationary during use. Place at least two on the bottom or consider optional leg levelers.

Aligning Doors/Drawers

Carefully align any doors so spacing looks seamless. Use shims during mounting or sand down as needed. Ensuring proper alignments keeps doors operating smoothly.

Get the Most Out of Your Island

With your own custom kitchen island equipped with pull out trash storage complete, it’s time to accessorize it and maximize functionality.

Trash Can Options to Fit

Having drawer space tailored specifically for your trash cans is a game changer. Take measurements so you know what size standard cans will fit before purchasing.

Quart Capacity

Many residential kitchen DIY islands are designed for two 36+ quart cans. Commercial sizes go up to 55 gallons for seriously sizable storage.

Wastebasket Dimensions

Standard dimensions for the most common kitchen can sizes include:

  • 13 gallon: 16″H x 12″W x 12″D
  • 20-30 gallon: 22″-25″H x 15″-18″W x 18″-19″D
  • 36-45 gallon: 28″-32″H x 18″-20″W x 22″-26″D

Measure your pull out carefully to find the ideal cans for your space.

Keeping It Clean

An island with integrated trash storage needs to be easy to clean and maintain. Here are some top tips for keeping things fresh:

Trash Can Liners

Use heavy duty commercial liners instead flimsy grocery bags to prevent leaks or tears.

Clearing Crumbs

Use a dry paintbrush to easily whisk away crumbs from nooks or butcher block.

Sanitizing Surfaces

Find wood-safe cleaners and regularly disinfect. Vinegar, lemon oil or gentle soap and water often suffice.

Safety and Maintenance

Take steps to care for your investment and prevent avoidable issues over time.

Prevent Tipping

Secure the island to wall studs if concerned about tipping, especially in homes with young children. Or place against another counter’s edge.

Protect Floors

Attach felt pads to the feet of stationary islands. Use rugs underneath those on rollers to prevent scuffing from frequent moving.

Lubricate Casters

Wipe down locking wheels and lubricate axles every few months so rolling remains smooth.

Inspiring Design Styles

While a butcher block top and shaker doors are timeless, today’s islands also integrate metal accents, unconventional shapes, open shelving and other on-trend elements.

Mixing Materials

Combine wood with marble countertops, painted color-blocked panels or stainless steel handles for contemporary twist.

Repurpose old barn doors for a rustic chic style or affix pegboard to create handy tool storage. Get creative!

However you choose to design it, a kitchen island with hidden integrated trash pull outs tackles storage needs with style! As an achievable DIY, you can build a custom furniture piece loaded with smart functionality.

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