how to replace trash compactor with pull-out trash? need cabinet?

mamatoalexAugust 21, 2011

I've lurked here before and found everyone here to be so knowledgeable! I know very little about kitchens, so I was hoping someone could help me.

My home is about 16 years old. I am not planning a kitchen remodel and overall I like my kitchen. However, the appliances (all 16 years old) are slowly dying. The current appliances are black and I'm thinking that I'm going to replace them with SS appliances.

However, I have a black trash compactor. I do not use it as a trash compactor, but just as a trash can. When I replace the black appliances with stainless steel ones, I'd like to get rid of the trash compactor. I still need somewhere for the trash to go, though, so I would like to convert this into, possibly a pull-out trash. However, I don't know exactly how to go about this. One is that I don't have a cabinet face for this space, and I'm not sure how to go about getting one that will match the cabinets in the kitchen. I know that the cabinets were custom cabinets, and I have looked carefully, but I cannot find any indication of who the maker was. I also don't know (because I don't know this type of thing) what type of wood the cabinets are made of. The cabinets themselves are very simple, and I'm not sure if a custom cabinet maker could just make a cabinet face for me, and whether that would be very expensive (my guess is yes).

Any suggestions, either for a reasonable way to get a matching cabinet face made or something else I can do that's easier/cheaper to replace the trash compactor with a trash pull-out?


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Find a good cabinet maker who can make a door and frame to match. Are they stained wood? Painted? Could you post a picture of your cabinets?

Without seeing it, I don't think it should be that expensive, but it could be hard to get on their radar right now. It may help you to wait until the summer remodeling rush slows down and cabinet makers are more hungry for work.

    Bookmark   August 21, 2011 at 11:20PM
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We did that exact thing when our compactor gave out. We took an actual drawer and photo of cabinet to Home Depot. They ordered the door to our measurements. You can do MDF or wood depending on whether you're painting or staining. Then my husband bought the pull out trash can holder. The whole deal cost about $100 and took a couple of hours.

I will try to send you photos


1 Like    Bookmark   August 22, 2011 at 6:03PM
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Sorry to bump this after so much time.

Here's a picture of the trash compactor.

This is the pull out trash/recycling system that I want. It says that it fits in a 15 inch width cabinet.

It took me this long to contact a few custom cabinet makers in my area. 2 of them have told me that to replace the trash compactor with the double pull out trash/recycling that I want, I would need to not only have a cabinet door/face, but also they'd need to create a cabinet box and a frame too. However, by doing this, the width of the side of the cabinet box would mean that they wouldn't be able to put in the pull-out that I want, which needs a width of 14.8 inches (the trash compactor is 15 inches), so I'd need to select a different one, which would have a much smaller bin size. The one I want has 2 50 quart bins, and I would have to go down to 2 27 quart bins, I think, to get it to fit, which is a big difference. I'm also talking to a third custom cabinet guy who said that there might be a way to be able to put in a "floor" to where the trash compactor was, so he could install the double pull out I want (which is bottom mounted, not side mounted) without any sides, and then put some type of frame at the top only, so something that the cabinet door could rest against while closed, but said he'd have to think about how to create it, and get back to me. I'm waiting to hear from him to see if he's thought of something that would work.

In addition, the price estimates I've gotten so far were substantially higher than I was expecting.

Alison, I'd love to know the details of how you and your dh did this. Did you add a whole cabinet box? If not, what did you mount your pullout to, and what does your door rest against?

I would appreciate any ideas. Thanks!

Here is a link that might be useful: rev-a-shelf double pull out

    Bookmark   September 29, 2011 at 8:52PM
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mamatolex: It doesn't say it would fit in a 15" cabinet; it says it will fit in a cabinet with a 15" opening. As you are discovering, sadly, these aren't the same things, but I think it may yet be possible. I am glad you are sticking with it and trying a third cabinet maker. I would be surprised if a cabinet maker couldn't rig up something like what the third guy is pondering. What are the sides of the cabinets on either side made of, and how thick? He may be able to use pocket screws or the like to solidly attach a new shelf/floor between the other cabs, maybe after building a plinth below. The cabinet overlay may be a bit of a problem, too, though.

    Bookmark   September 30, 2011 at 12:10AM
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Fori is not pleased

I added a double trash pullout to an existing cabinet and had to go with a 12" wide unit. It's not bad!

Love the cabinets--definitely worth saving if they're all that pretty. What about a stainless (or faux stainless) front on the trash cabinet to go with the new appliances? Or something more cute like a sheet of woven wicker stuck to a board and all stained a close shade?

    Bookmark   September 30, 2011 at 6:22PM
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How about one of their single container units? I'm sure it would not be smaller than you have now...

    Bookmark   September 30, 2011 at 6:49PM
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fori: Where did you find a 12 inch unit to replace your trash compactor??

    Bookmark   February 28, 2013 at 3:03PM
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