Here at ecokarma, we believe that one day the majority of waste will be returned to a more natural cycle. Progress is being made on many fronts. With the amount of education available about recycling, the amount of trash in an average household has decreased significantly. We are hoping that education about composting will help to diminish household waste by even greater amounts.
The next time you are preparing a meal for yourself or others, take notice of what your are throwing away. Banana peels? Potato skins? Tops of tomatoes or peppers? Then you notice some leftover salad in your fridge from the night before that has gone brown… What is your plan with these scraps and old meals? If you have no place to put them besides the garbage, we would like to offer you an alternative.
13 Best Compost Bins and Tumblers
Here are the most popular food composting units. The products are sorted by price ascending. This is our comparison table of the best compost tumblers and bins. For mobile users, you will see a compact price ascending list instead of the full table for easier viewing. No worries, it still has all the info just in a mobile optimized format.
|Presto Products Geobin||Bin||7 pound ; 216 gallon||50% Recycled Plastic|
|Redmon Green Culture Composter||Bin||15 pound ; 65 gallon||80% Recycled Plastic|
|Miracle Gro DC270MG Composter||Tumbler ; 2 Chambers||20 pound ; 37 gallon||Plastic ; Steel Frame|
|Yimby Black Composter||Tumbler ; Dual Chamber||26 pound ; 37 gallon||100% Recycled Plastic ; 100% Recycled Steel Tubing Frame|
|Deluxe Pyramid Composter||Bin||20 pound ; 90 gallon||100% Recycled Plastic|
|Good Ideas Compost Wizard Envirotumble||Tumbler ; Single Chamber||22 pound ; 47 gallon||100% Recycled Plastic|
|Good Ideas Wizard Dueling Composter||Tumbler ; Dual Chamber||50 gallon||100% Recycled Plastic|
|Spin Bin Composter||Tumbler ; Single Chamber||22 pounds ; 60 gallon||100% Recycled Plastic|
|Mantis CT09001 Easy Spin||Tumbler ; Single Chamber||35 pound ; 37 gallon||Plastic ; Steel Frame|
|Tierra Garden Large Thermo King||Bin||40 pound ; 240 gallon||100% Recycled Plastic|
|The Most Beautiful Composter by Envirocycle||Tumbler ; Single Chamber||25 pound ; 35 gallon||100% Recycled Plastic|
|Jora 270 Composter||Tumbler ; 2 Chambers||52 pound ; 70 gallon||Galvanized Sheet Metal|
|Schiller Grounds Care Compost Twin||Tumbler ; 2 Chambers||150 pound ; 180 gallon||Galvanized Sheet Metal ; Powder Coated Steel Frame|
Types of Composters
There are two kinds of composters that are made for heavy duty action: bins and tumblers. Bins are typically the larger of the two and are great for those who want to compost without too much thought.
Compost bins are simply an enclosed alternative to managing open compost pile. Bins help contain the compost, the worst of the odors, and prevent pests from getting into your compost. Raccoons in particular have a penchant for compost snacks.
Because of their larger size and stationary design, compost bins take longer to process than tumblers. You can speed up the process by mixing things up with a handy pitchfork, but most folks don’t find the composting mixing process too attractive. However, they are much lower maintenance, and if you only want a few large batches of compost a year, bins are the way to go. Smaller ones can be used in conjunction with tumblers, as a sort of stockpile storage system.
Tumblers are the most efficient enclosed container compost method. The advantage tumblers have over bins is that they have a built in turning mechanism allowing you to ‘tumble’ the contents. If you stick to a regular turning routine, it helps produce rich compost soil faster. Their thicker walls make them more weather resistant and take as little as four weeks to cook up a batch of compost. Some of them can even be moved, but the bigger ones are just as stationary as compost bins.
Tumblers get a bit more tricky, as there are a few designs to choose from:
Rotating Axle Drums. The drum (the container part of the unit) is horizontally or vertically mounted and rotates around a central axle. Typically a handle is incorporated in this design that allows you to turn the compost. This turning nurtures and accelerates the composting process. Most of these compost tumblers feature a raised framework on which the drum rests. This raised design is super convenient. When the compost is ready, you can push a wheelbarrow underneath, open the latch, and there’s a load of fresh soil for your garden. The con to this type of composter is that they are usually pretty darn expensive.
Base Rolling Drums. Horizontally mounted, the drum is positioned on a solid base. This base is level with the ground and sometimes is fitted with rollers making it easy to turn. Steps and handles are molded into these units, making it possible to rotate with your arms and legs in some cases. These are less expensive then the crank operated drum type, but since they sit level with the ground, are more difficult to use. You’ll have to shovel compost out of oftentimes narrow openings.
Rolling Spheres. You can roll these large sphere containers from one place to the next as they are not mounted to a base or frame. While their mobility is sometimes convenient, most folks do not enjoy rolling these around their yard every day to tumble their compost. Of course, the heavier they are loaded, the more difficult they are to control. In addition, they can be extremely cumbersome to empty. We recommend our readers avoid this design unless they are looking for creative exercise ideas.
Other Composter Designs
Aside from just large bins and tumblers, we’ve also added some sleek and effective countertop composters and wormeries to our reviews. If you are still unsure about what will work best for you and your household, check out our information page including a pros and cons list that will help narrow things down.
General Thoughts on Composting
The circle of life quickly becomes evident in the act of composting. From food waste and yard debris comes beautiful rich soil, from the soil comes new plant life. To be the begetter of this cycle is not only emotionally rewarding, it returns to you useful soil to apply to your yard and garden.
Composting can benefit the environment around you and significantly decrease the amount of excess waste that come from the preparation and consumption of meals. Also, composting is a wonderful way to recycle yard waste, which makes weeding seem like less of a chore. Organic waste is turned into nutrient rich soil that will help to enhance the health of the earth and promote plant growth. If you don’t have a garden, this could be a good way to get one started—even if it’s just a few planters on the porch.
In cities like Portland, Oregon, compost bins are common household appliances, and can also be found in fast food restaurants and even on sidewalks in some downtown areas. We’re taking inspiration from Portland and have compiled a list of the best home composting bins so that you can make a similar commitment. If you are interested in learning more about the composting process first, check out our Composting 101 page—it may help you narrow down what composter will be the best for you.
Composter Reviews: Best Composting Bins of 2016
Composting bins are used for stationary composting, and take longer to process new batches of compost. However, they typically can hold a lot more of your food and yard waste than a tumbler. If you’re looking for a low-maintenance way to start composting large quantities, we have a few reviews of the best ones on the market for you.
1. Best Starter Bin: Algreen Products Soil Saver
Algreen Products Soil Saver Classic Compost Bin: this simple composting bin keeps pests out while letting air in for your dark compost humus to cook. This bin is equipped for both food and yard waste, and its thicker walls are weather resistant and will be able to process composting in any climate all throughout the year. Trapping heat can mean faster compost, so even though it adds weight- thick walls are a feature you want to look for when going compost bin shopping. The assembly is easy, and it comes with nylon screws, so you don’t need to worry about rust. The warranty and simplicity of this bin with its dual sliding doors all contribute to why it tops the list of best composters.
- Size- 27 x 27 x 32 inches
- Weight- 30 pounds
- Material- 100% Environmentally Friendly Materials
- Compost Time- 6 to 8 Weeks
- Warranty: 25 years
2. Best Bin for Yard Waste: Presto Products Geobin
Presto Products Geobin: if you’re doing a lot of yard waste composting instead of a combination of food and yard, the Geobin composting system will be a great addition to your yard routine. They are extremely easy to assemble and fill with any yard debris and are low cost enough that using more than one is extremely practical. As long as you’re familiar with the ins and outs of layering and creating a rich humus, then these bins will be extremely effective. This is a great low-maintenance bin that can be adjusted in size based upon your personal needs.
- Size: Up to a three ft. Diameter
- Weight: 5 lbs
- Material: Lightweight Plastic
- Best Feature: Adjustable size and easy assembly
3. Best Bin to Accompany a Tumbler: Redmon Compost Bin
Redmon Compost Bin: some of you more experienced composters, or those that are wanting to get serious about their humus, it could be in your best interest to pair a compost tumbler with a bin. In this instance, this particular bin from Redmon is a perfect fit for a partnership. Yard and food waste can be stockpiled in this large unit with a snap-on lid, that’s made with weather resistant material. The convenience of four easy-open side doors will give you easy access to transport your partially processed compost into a tumbler for faster processing. The air circulation is great, and this model will be a perfect supplement to your current composting system.
- Size- 26 x 26 x 30.8 inches (8.7 Cubic Foot)
- Weight- 16.9 pounds
- Material- Post Consumer Polypropylene (UV stabilized material)
- Best Feature- Four Access Doors
4. Best Bin For Your Garden: Deluxe Pyramid Composter
Deluxe Pyramid Composter: let’s admit, while looks aren’t everything, sometimes they still matter. If you’re looking to add a compost bin to your garden without it looking like a giant garbage can in this middle of your yard. This composter not only looks great, but works spectacularly. Gardener’s Supply has developed a composter with easy access lids on the top for loading, and two on the sides for simple removal of your freshly brewed humus. If you’re in a rainy climate, this composter will even cut out a step for you- the pyramid shaped lid is designed to self-water the compost for you and keep it moist. As an added bonus, Garden Supply has produced this masterpiece in both black and brown colors to help you coordinate with your gardening and landscaping design.
- Size: 28 x 28 x 34H
- Holds: 9½ Bushels (12 square feet)
- Material: 100% Recycled Process
- Best Feature: Rain catching lid
5. Best Large Capacity Bin: Tierra Garden Large Thermo King
Tierra Garden Large Thermo King: if you’re looking for the biggest and best in the composting business, look no further. This 240 gallon composting bin is going to be the best for any heavy duty composting action. Load it with all of your kitchen and garden waste and the humus will cook within 100% recycled walls. This heavy duty unit will keep creatures out, and is easy to put together. The easy-fill double doors on top latch down for a wind proof system, and there is a bottom flap for easy access to the compost that is ready to be used in your garden.
- Size: 39.3 x 39.3 x 39.3
- Weight: 40 lbs.
- Material: 100% recycled polypropylene
- Best Feature: Holds 240 Gallons of compost
Composter Reviews: Best Composting Tumblers of 2016
Getting into composting, means eventually you’ll probably want to invest in a compost tumbler. If you’ve already got a bin or two in your yard, then a tumbler might be the perfect addition to help speed up your processing or help you with your regular routine. Tumblers mean you can throw away the pitchfork and shovel and simply turn the whole compost pile at once. Check out some of the best composting tumblers on the market below.
6. Best Single Chamber Tumbler: Good Ideas Compost Wizard
Good Ideas Compost Wizard: this particular tumbler sits at ground level and will arrive to you pre-assembled and ready to use. It’s black exterior made of 100% recycled BPA free plastics will attract more heat which is great for your compost. The Compost Wizard uses small holes in the ends to bring in plenty of air circulation, but the door is also fitted with a vent if extra aeration is desired. The bin rotates on the base smoothly, and is backed by a one year warranty.
- Size: 31 x 36 x 28 deep
- Weight: 40 lbs
- Material: 100% recycled and BPA free plastics
- Best Feature: Arrives Assembled with 1 year warranty
7. Best Large Capacity Tumbler: Lifetime Compost Tumbler
Lifetime 65-Gallon Compost Tumbler: above-ground compost tumblers add in a whole new level to composting. The Lifetime 65-Gallon Compost Tumbler is balanced and lightweight which will make turning it much easier, especially since you don’t need to bend over to turn it. Because it is above ground level, it also keeps away any pesky creatures. The thick heavy-duty black paneled walls absorb and retain heat with their double-layered design; because of this you can be assured that there will also be no foul odors! The best part is that this sleek tumbler also is designed in similar style in a smaller 50 gallon and larger 80 gallon models.
- Size: 36 x 35 x 45 Deep
- Weight: 55 lbs.
- Material: High Density Polyethylene
- Best Feature: Lightweight and similar design comes in many sizes
8. Best Dual Chamber Steel Tumbler: Joraform Compost Tumbler
Joraform Compost Tumbler: if you’re looking to purchase a top-of-the-line tumbler that can process kitchen waste at top speeds, look no further! This composter has two compartments so that one can mature while the other one is being filled. While this is a much heavier composter, the processing time is also much faster since the insulation can keep the temperature at as high as 160 degrees Fahrenheit. The steel stand makes for easy reach and usage while keeping away all pests. While there might be a higher cost, there will be a bigger payout with this tumbler which is why it tops our list for double chamber models. It also comes in a smaller single chamber and larger double chamber styles.
- Size: 44 x 52 x 28 deep
- Weight: 82 lbs
- Material: Metal Exterior/Insulated Interior
- Best Feature: Insulated interior
9. Best Large Capacity Tumbler: Good Ideas Wizard Dual Tumbler (80 gallon version)
Good Ideas Composting Wizard Dueling Tumbler: even though they are similar in design, both the Good Ideas’ single and dueling tumbler made the list of reviews for best composters because they are both worthy of making it to your garden! Two 8 inch openings make the tumbler easy to fill, and the base will collect up to 5 gallons of compost tea that leaks out as the compost processes. The black color helps absorb heat and the design is extremely weatherproof. As an extra bonus, it also comes preassembled and with a one year warranty!
- Size: 25 x 25.5 x 31
- Weight: 28 lbs
- Material: 100% recycled, BPA Free plastic
- Best Feature: Compost Tea Collecting Base
10. Best Selling Dual Chamber Tumbler: YIMBY Dual Compost Tumbler
YIMBY Dual Compost Tumbler: one of the most popular tumblers of 2016 on our top reviews list, and it’s one of the best! Similar in style to the single chamber model, it’s two in one! Use the red processing indicator to mark the bin that is cooking while you fill the other one. And don’t worry about over tumbling- you can rotate the 37 gallons worth of compost. The HDPE panels absorb and retain heat so the compost process speeds up a bit. And don’t be wary of the weight, the bins themselves are actually light and easy to turn, most of the weight comes from the steel base which ensures it won’t tip over and cause trouble even when empty and waiting for the next batch!
- Size: 36 x 31 x 28 inches
- Weight: 80 lbs.
- Material: Light Weight HDPE Panels
- Best Feature: Separate Turning Chambers