How to Decide – Baler or Compactor

So, you’ve made the decision to tackle the issue of your waste management head on. That’s great news, but now you are confronted with a major decision to make. Do you opt for a waste compactor, whether it be static or mobile, or do you decide to go for a waste baler? Let’s take a look at some of the characteristics of each and to whom each type of equipment is best suited.

What do balers and compactors have in common?

Both balers and compactors will reduce the volume of your waste by compression.

What is the key difference between balers and compactors?

They are each best suited to processing different materials

Of course, this is putting it in simple terms, but is a useful start point for those who are confused as to how compactors and balers differ.

The case for balers

Balers are best suited to companies who produce a lot of waste material that is capable of being recycled (e.g. cardboard, paper, plastics, metal, and polystyrene) and sometimes even monetised to provide a return on investment. For large companies producing a high volumes amount of waste, horizontal balers will be more appropriate, but the majority of small to medium sized businesses will be more suited to vertical balers, which take up less space.

Let’s assume your waste product is mainly cardboard. If you have a baler:

  • You no longer need to waste valuable labour and time on flattening those boxes
  • If you opt for a vertical bailer they are very space efficient and can usually be situated close to where the cardboard waste is produced.
  • It is easy to calculate weights before collection by simply counting the number of bales.
  • There are few consumables and the baler is very easy to use and maintain.
  • You will minimize the amount of transportation needed to remove your waste from your site, reduce your carbon footprint and increase your green profile.

The case for compactors

If you produce a large amount of mixed waste that is very difficult to sort or is unavoidably cross-contaminated on site then you will undoubtedly be more suited to opting for a compactor. This is because the primary function of a compactor is the sorting of large volumes of unsorted mixed waste and the reduction of its volume by a reduction of an average of around 3-1. Your waste is then collected by a waste collection service provider and disposed of. You will benefit from saving space (removing air from the waste and reducing the number of bins needed), saving time from unnecessary trips to the dump and emptying all those bins and of course saving money from those trips, fuel and transportation costs. You will also help to create a more sanitary and pleasant working environment as you eliminate the hazards and bad smells associated with large bins.