Everyone is concerned about reducing their carbon footprint and recycling is the best way to do that. Donating an item would be the first choice but if you are able to donate then recycle.  This helps our environment and you can now create your own mini recycling center. This is the perfect way to dispose of your bathroom or kitchen day to day items.

Materials Needed:

  • plastic recycling bin
  • paper recycling bin
  • glass recycling bin
  • compost bin
  • trash bin
  • vinyl peel-and-stick letters
  • shingles
  • measuring tape
  • 4×8′ pressure-treated sheets of beadboard
  • 8′-long strips of 2×2″ pressure-treated wood
  • wood glue
  • chop saw
  • 2″ exterior screws
  • drill
  • 4×8′ sheets of pressure-treated, paint-grade plywood
  • table saw
  • 8′ long 2×4″ pressure-treated boards
  • 1/4″ drill bit
  • 1″ thick by 10′-long plank of pressure-treated wood
  • pencil
  • yardstick
  • circular saw
  • staple gun
  • heavy-duty staples
  • roll of tar paper
  • drip edge flashing
  • 1″ thick by 10′ long plank of pressure-treated wood
  • nail gun
  • nails or brads
  • HVLP paint sprayer
  • exterior paint

Where to start

Deciding on the best outdoor area your recycling center is very important. The best to put the recycling center is along an exterior wall of the home, not visible from the street and not close any trees.

Measure Bins and Lids

Measuring the dimensions of the trash cans, bins and lids you will be using is an  important factor when creating an outdoor recycling center efficiently. Measure the height, width and depth for each container and all coordinating lids.

Note: If you are using trash cans with attached wheels, be sure to include the height of the wheels in the overall measurements.

Building your center


The base will be made based on the measurements of the containers and lids, take into account the distance needed to reach in and out of each bin. Mark 8-foot strips of 2×2-inch pressure-treated wood to cut four sides of a rectangular frame and four support joists. Next, cut with a chop saw. On a flat, level surface, put the base together adding support joists in the center. Make sure the joists are even spaced. Once all 2×2-inch pieces are in place, use the wood glue along each of their edges. Next, secure the frame with 2-inch exterior screws using a drill.

Floor Surface

Create a solid floor surface for bins to sit on from 4×8-foot sheet of paint-grade, pressure-treated plywood. Mark the plywood to the same dimensions as the base. Place plywood on the table saw, starting the blade along the marked edge. Slowly and carefully cut the plywood. Place the plywood on the frame, and secure with 2-inch exterior screws.


This will elevate the base two inches above the ground and provide protection for your recycling center, cut 8-foot long pressure-treated 2×4-inch boards the same depth as the base, and attach along the bottom with 2-inch exterior screws. Place a level on the floor surface to verify it is even and level. Measure and cut the frames for the side and rear panels by marking 2×2-inch pressure-treated wood to size. Cut and assemble the panels with glue and 2-inch exterior screws. Place them on top of the base, and use a 1/4-inch drill bit to create pilot holes along the top, center and bottom of side-panel frames and into rear-panel frames. Once pilot holes are drilled, firmly attach the side-panel frames and rear-panel frames with 2-inch exterior screws.

Roof Structure

Measure two pieces of a 1-inch by 10-foot long plank of pressure-treated wood at a 45-degree angle at the same measurement as the depth of the recycling center. Mark a third piece 1 inch shorter in width than the first two. Following the angled mark, cut three pieces from pressure-treated pine plank using a circular saw. Place the angled pieces side by side to ensure they’re even. Mark and cut the remaining length of the pressure-treated pine plank with the same dimension as the overall width of the recycling center. Place two angled pieces perpendicular to each end, and use a drill bit to create pilot holes to attach the long piece to the two angled pieces. Add wood glue along the edges of all three pieces. Place two angled pieces perpendicular to the long piece, and attach to one another with 2-inch exterior screws into the pilot holes. Attach the third angled piece (one inch shorter in depth than the other two) with 2-inch exterior wood screws to the back of the long piece.

Once done assembling the roof structure place the roof structure on top of side and rear panels. Using a drill and 1/4-inch drill bit, drill pilot holes up through each of the 2×2-foot side and rear panels. Attach the roof structure to the side and rear panels with 2-inch exterior screws.

Mark, measure and cut two pieces of 2×2-inch pressure-treated wood to the depth of the recycling center. Attach along top edge of angled pieces using 2-inch exterior screws. Mark, cut and attach a third piece running the length of the recycling center plus the width of each perpendicular 2×2-inch board.

Assemble and Attach Rooftop

Use a table saw to cut a 4×8-foot sheet of pressure-treated, paint-grade plywood the width and depth of the three 2×2-inch pieces of trim. Attach plywood to the 2×2-inch pieces with 2-inch exterior screws using a drill. Roll the tar paper out, cut to the width of rooftop and attach with a staple gun. Cut drip edge flashing to size, and attach around all three sides using a drill and 2-inch exterior screws. Attach shingles along the roof top using heavy-duty staples and a staple gun.

Finishing touches


Mark and cut, according to measurements, 4×8-foot sheets of pressure-treated beadboard into two side panels and one rear panel. Add wood glue along exterior of side- and rear-panel frames, and attach beadboard using a nail gun.


Cut 2×2-inch pressure-treated wood needed to accommodate each recycling containers. Attach 2×2-inch pieces to side-panel framing with 2-inch exterior wood screws using a drill. With these measurements, cut a shelf surface from a 4×8-foot sheet of pressure-treated, paint-grade plywood using a table saw.


Measure the overall width and height of the recycling center. Mark and cut fascia from pre-primed pressure-treated 1×3-inch trim according to the measurements. Attach along the front with a nail gun.


Use quality exterior paint to paint the interior and exterior of the recycling center, apply two coats.