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  • Skip Hire for Plasterboard

    Some skip hire companies won’t take plasterboard at all, for a variety of reasons related to public health. With McCarthy, our team of professional waste disposal experts have decades of experience in plasterboard recycling – and we’re happy to help get DIY and trade waste sorted for you. The rules around placing plasterboard in a skip are simple and in this post, we outline why they are in place.

    You Can’t Mix Plasterboard and General Waste

    Plasterboard has become the most popular interior construction material – because besides being excellent for creating internal spaces quickly, it’s cheaper and more fire resistant than traditional methods of interior construction (like lath and plaster).

    Just about any kind of remodelling, conversion or renovation is going to involve plasterboard – either gutting out the old stuff or cutting and installing new board. Getting rid of waste plasterboard has to be done carefully, though.

    The one rule? Don’t mix it with anything else. 

    But why?

    Plasterboard is made of gypsum powder – a natural, chalky mineral that’s soft and moldable. This is the base material of plaster, a material used since ancient times to decorate buildings, for sculpture and until recently, to make casts for setting broken bones.

    To make plasterboard, wet plaster is sandwiched between thick sheets of paper, thoroughly dried and then treated to reach optimal humidity. Too dry and it’ll crack, too wet and mildew can form – but additives can be mixed into the plaster to help strength and reduce mildew formation.

    Once set, the boards are strong enough to build with.

    But gypsum has drawbacks. While it’s perfectly safe as a material on its own, it can react with other organic compounds in general waste to release hydrogen sulphide, in a process called putrefaction.

    Hydrogen Sulphide

    Hydrogen sulphide is colourless, poisonous, corrosive and explosive. It also stinks of rotten eggs. In short, it’s bad news. It’s denser than air, so it sinks in the atmosphere and can form gas pockets underground or in landfill, contributing to pollution.

    This dangerous gas is the reason that plasterboard cannot be mixed with general waste – and so if you need to dispose of plasterboard in a skip, you have to make sure it’s separated from everything else.

    Disposing of Plasterboard in a Skip

    The Environmental Agency changed the rules on disposing of gypsum-based materials in 2009. Plasterboard can’t be sent to landfill – instead, it should be separated for recovery and recycling, to avoid contamination with other waste and the release of harmful hydrogen sulphide.

    If you’re undertaking a DIY remodelling project, we suggest hiring more than one skip. For example, use mini skip hire to store and dispose of plasterboard – and hire a builders skip to take care of bulky, general construction waste.

    As long as the separated plasterboard is kept clean and dry, it’ll be safe to take away and recycle!

    Skip Hire Experts – Helping You on Every Project

    Hire a skip now from McCarthy, for quick and convenient disposal of all kinds of waste – including separated plasterboard. Need help choosing the right size of skip for your project? Call us on 01235 760555 or fill out our contact form and our waste disposal experts will guide you.