Level Loads Notice

What does Level Loads on your skip mean? What is the meaning of the notice given about Level Loads with your skip hire? Terms state ‘Level Loads’ but what is the definition of level loads for skips? Is my rubbish level?

When you hire a skip the most common problems faced by skip users throughout the country are regarding the amount of rubbish placed into a skip container.  Often, this results in extra costs and the filled skip can be left in your way until resolved.


Looking at the picture, it may be obvious that this skip is simply too small for the amount placed into it? Unfortunately, for some people it is not obvious and they are confused when the skip lorry driver refuses to collect it. This is NOT a level load!
Wasting the skip company’s time, fuel, labour & running costs often means you are landed with a fine, especially if the collection has to be re-booked. For the skip user, the skip lorry driver, and the skip provider company, this situation is terrible and nobody is a winner. The skip container is due back to the business, often booked to be taken out for hire elsewhere, so the next customer becomes affected by the ignoring of “Level Loads”.

Why can the driver not just take it and charge extra? Sometimes this happens, but not as you expect. The skip container may be taken, with your garbage left behind! If the skip is due back and the load is not safe, it may result in your rubbish being left where it is and simply the skip slid out and removed.


Playing ‘Jenga’ with your trash, while the skip is perfectly still, is easy. Likely, you can double the height of the skip, especially if you add boards, doors, planks or metal sheets at the sides to raise the height. Jenga may be fun, but simply it is dangerous when the skip moves.

loaded_skip_hire_harlowThe question to ask yourself is-

Would you drive behind the skip lorry, to follow it to the dump, collecting any of your rubbish that falls off?

If you are happy to do that then you either have a Level Load skip, or perhaps, you should not be driving anywhere on UK roads?!
Beyond inconsideration, further than utter madness, overfilled skips are not just dangerous for motorists, they are illegal. If a driver refuses your skip then don’t expect to win the argument, he/she simply does not want to break the law. The best solution will be to remove rubbish from the top, or hopefully choose not to overload and fill beyond the level of the height of the skip in the first place.


skip_rubbish_levelWe all like to get something extra for nothing, so going beyond the load limit seems like an easy way to get an advantage on garbage removal costs. But, more than that, it is often difficult to estimate the size of skip you need for your rubbish. Often, the skip is simply too small and you didn’t intend to have the overfill. In this instance, call and discuss with your skip provider. Rather than chancing a collection fail, the genuine error can often be solved without too much trouble. For instance, a bigger skip can be brought along, your overfilled one can be tipped into it, and the empty small skip can then be placed on top for transport. You may have to pay the slight difference, but that’s a cheap option and everyone is left satisfied.

Not all skips have a perfect flat rim, how do I know what is the correct level if there are sloping angles? As in the picture below, you can see the rubbish is stepped back from the end, sloping upwards, so is this overloaded?FB_IMG_1531165200133-960

Yes, the above skip is overloaded. The side of a skip is angled at the ends to reduce overhanging items. No rubbish should be protruding beyond the ends of skips, in the same way items should not overhang sideways too. The taper of the sides is to show that as the waste reaches near to the maximum level you need to start reducing the length of items so nothing has chance of being too close to these end limits. Simply, it is safest to taper away from the end with the top layers of trash. As stated, the maximum height should be level with the top of the highest part of the skip side.

FB_IMG_1530790427798-960 Another example of far too much rubbish for the size of skip ordered. An option your provider will offer is to book a swap-over, where a second skip is delivered while removing the original one at the same time. The overfill can be loaded straight to the new one while the lorry driver waits, then once the original is removed the second half-loaded skip can still be moved, to park back into the correct spot needed.

FB_IMG_1530798333373-960Something to remember with overloaded skips is that a collecting driver needs to get access for any removal. If excess rubbish falls over either sides, or placed against a skip that is too small, this means the driver cannot get the the lifting points. This is more common than you would imagine with skips that are not big enough for the amount of waste. Make sure there is access to both sides of the skip, so that lifting chains can be fitted easily, especially if you book collection and nobody will be there, the driver wont be responsible for moving side spillage or trash that blocks access.

Heavy-weighted skips should have extra consideration, detailed more below. heavy_large_skipsOverloading a skip isn’t always about Level Loads. This example is beyond the level load and some of the waste has to be removed for transport. Yes it is too high, but it can also be too heavy for a skip to safely contain. Metal bins have limits and going above the side level may mean you go beyond weight capabilities too.  Additionally, sometimes when a driver lifts a filled skip it indicates that all weight is to one side, or one corner. Not directly a level load problem, but the responsibility is firmly with you as a hirer to make sure the skip is loaded evenly. Level loads is a shortened phrase that refers to terms of hire and conditions of loads as a whole. Skips need to be loaded with the weight distributed level, as much as feasibly possible. So, not too much dense heavy material to one side, or one corner, with lighter materials to the opposite side or corner. Fill the skip to the best of your ability by spreading the rubbish level as you go, mixing light with heavy. Level loads really means keeping a level head and loading a safe skip that can be moved without worry.