Last updated: Monday, November 26, 2018
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 unnecessary household waste by even greater amounts. In this article, we’re going to give you access to our composter reviews, along with some ideas and tips on how to get started composting in your home.
The next time you are preparing a meal for yourself or others, take notice of what you’re 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.
Best Composters Comparison Tables
Up first is our comparison tables of the best compost bins and tumblers. We’ve got them in an easy to browse format, organized by price ascending in two separate charts.
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. Select the green plus buttons to view more information on each composter.
Below these charts, we cover these same units with more in-depth reviews. Then, we’ll round out the page with information about different types of composting to help you make your final purchasing decision.
Compost Bin Comparison
|Geobin||Bin||7lbs ; 216 gallon||50% Recycled Plastic|
|Redmon Green Culture Composter||Bin||15lbs ; 65 gallon||80% Recycled Plastic|
|Algreen Products Soil Saver||Bin||30lbs ; 89 gallon||Environmentally Safe Plastics|
|Deluxe Pyramid Composter||Bin||20lbs ; 90 gallon||100% Recycled Plastic|
|Tierra Garden Large Thermo King||Bin||40lbs ; 240 gallon||100% Recycled Plastic|
Compost Tumbler Comparison
|Miracle Gro DC270MG Composter||Tumbler ; 2 Chambers||20lbs ; 37 gallon||Plastic ; Steel Frame|
|Yimby Black Composter||Tumbler ; Dual Chamber||26lbs ; 37 gallon||100% Recycled Plastic ; 100% Recycled Steel Tubing Frame|
|Good Ideas Compost Wizard Envirotumble||Tumbler ; Single Chamber||22lbs ; 47 gallon||100% Recycled Plastic|
|Lifetime Compost Tumbler||Tumbler; Single Chamber||55lbs ; 65 gallon||High Density Polyethylene|
|Good Ideas Wizard Dueling Composter||Tumbler ; Dual Chamber||50 gallon||100% Recycled Plastic|
|Spin Bin Composter||Tumbler ; Single Chamber||22lbs ; 60 gallon||100% Recycled Plastic|
|HOT FROG Dual Body Tumbling Composter||Tumbler ; 2 Chambers||30lbs; 37 gallon||100% Recycled Plastic|
|Mantis CT09001 Easy Spin||Tumbler ; Single Chamber||35lbs ; 37 gallon||Plastic ; Steel Frame|
|The Most Beautiful Composter by Envirocycle||Tumbler ; Single Chamber||25lbs ; 35 gallon||100% Recycled Plastic|
|Jora 270 Composter||Tumbler ; 2 Chambers||52lbs ; 70 gallon||Galvanized Sheet Metal|
15 Best Compost Bins and Tumblers: Composter Reviews
Welcome to our composter reviews section! Just like the tables above, we have the compost bins in the first portion, and compost tumblers in the second. They are all listed in order of price just like the tables, as to give you an easy way to compare cost, quality, features, and benefits.
Composter Reviews: Best Composting Bins of 2018
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.
Here are the most popular composting units for your homes and gardens. The products are sorted by price ascending, however we have given each unit an award to mark what we feel it does best at!
Best Composting Bin for Yard Waste
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.
- Award: Best Composting Bin for Yard Waste
- Size: Up to 3ft. Diameter
- Capacity: Up to 216 Gallons
- Weight: 5 lbs
- Material: Lightweight Plastic
- Best Feature: Adjustable size and easy assembly
Best Composting Bin for Yard Waste
Best Bin to Accompany a Tumbler
Redmon Green Culture 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.
- Award: Best Bin to Accompany a Compost Tumbler
- Size: 26 x 26 x 30.8 inches (8.7 Cubic Foot)
- Capacity: 65 Gallons
- Weight: 16.9 pounds
- Material: Post Consumer Polypropylene (UV stabilized material)
- Best Feature: Four Access Doors
Best Starter Compost Bin
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.
- Award: Best Starter Compost Bin
- Size: 27 x 27 x 32 inches
- Weight: 30 pounds
- Capacity: 89 Gallons
- Material: 100% Environmentally Friendly Materials
- Compost Time: 6 to 8 Weeks
- Warranty: 25 years
Best Compost Bin For Your Garden
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.
- Award: Best Compost Bin For Your Garden
- Size: 28 x 28 x 34H
- Capacity: 89 Gallons
- Material: 100% Recycled Process
- Best Feature: Rain catching lid
Best Large Capacity Composting Bin
Tierra Garden Large Thermo King: Are you seeking the biggest and best in the composting business? Tierra Garden has the bin for you. 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.
- Award: Best Large Capacity Composting Bin
- Size: 39.3 x 39.3 x 39.3
- Capacity: 160 or 240 Gallons
- Weight: 40 lbs.
- Material: 100% recycled polypropylene
- Best Feature: Holds 240 Gallons of compost
Composter Reviews: Best Composting Tumblers of 2018
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, listed in order of price from low to high.
Best Composter for the Money
Miracle Gro Dual Chamber Tumbling Composter: One of the most affordable compost tumblers comes from one of the kings of home gardening. If you already trust miracle grow with feeding your plants, then you just trust their design for an effective backyard composter. Dual compartments make it easy to rotate different humus brews at different times, ensuring that each one decomposes properly.
With an ideal aeration system, the composting process will be accelerated for all of your gardening waste. The doors are completely removable which makes emptying of the compartments no hassle.
- Award: Best Composter for the Money
- Size: 25 x 32 x 23
- Capacity: 18.5 Gallons/Chamber
- Weight: 19lbs
- Material: Plastic
- Best Feature: Individual Turning Chambers
Best Selling Dual Chamber 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 mixing – you can rotate the 37 gallons worth of compost all at the same time.
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!
- Award: Best Selling Dual Chamber Compost Tumbler
- Size: 36 x 31 x 28 inches
- Capacity: 37 Gallons
- Weight: 80 lbs.
- Material: Light Weight HDPE Panels
- Best Feature: Separate Chambers in One Turning Unit
Best Single Chamber Tumbler
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 EnviroTumbler 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.
- Award: Best Single Chamber Tumbler
- Size: 28 x 24 x 25 deep
- Capacity: 47 Gallons
- Weight: 40 lbs
- Material: 100% recycled and BPA free plastics
- Best Feature: Arrives Assembled with 1 year warranty
Best Large Capacity 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.
- Award: Best Large Capacity Compost Tumbler
- Size: 36 x 35 x 45 Deep
- Capacity: 65 Gallons
- Weight: 55 lbs.
- Material: High Density Polyethylene
- Best Feature: Lightweight and similar design comes in many sizes
Best Large Capacity Compost Tumbler
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 pre-assembled and with a one year warranty.
- Award: Best Large Capacity Compost Tumbler
- Size: 25 x 25.5 x 31
- Capacity: 82 Gallons
- Weight: 28 lbs
- Material: 100% recycled, BPA Free plastic
- Best Feature: Compost Tea Collecting Base
Best Tall Bin Composter
Spin Bin Composter: This tumbler turns composting on it’s head- well, at least on it’s side. The spin bin allows for more space for the compost to mix when you turn it. It boasts it’s design as one that add ease and increases the speed of compost creation. There’s also a 2 Year Manufacturer Guarantee backing this composter, with no questions asked.
- Award: Best Tall Bin Composter
- Size: 26 x 32 x 45
- Capacity: 60 Gallons
- Weight: 22lbs
- Material: Plastic w/ Steel Legs
Best Small Dual Composter
HotFrog Dual Body Tumbling Composter: FCMP Outdoor made the HotFrog dual composter to look good and work well. Due to it’s ease of use we highly recommend it for beginners. The separate sides allow for proper processing in smaller batches. Continue to swap sides as much as possible so that you can continue to produce healthy compost regularly.
- Award: Best Small Dual Composter
- Size: 30 x 36 x 28
- Capacity: 37 Gallons
- Weight: 30lbs
- Material: BPA Free Polyethylene
Best Small Batch Composter
Mantis Easy Spin ComosTumbler: There’s nothing too glamorous about this compost tumbler, but sometimes it’s just not needed. This is a smaller capacity tumbler suitable for small gardens or those who are just getting into composting. It’s fully equipped with two vents, one for air circulation and one for drainage. It turns easily and and fits virtually anywhere, for added ease of use.
- Award: Best Small Batch Composter
- Size: 31 x 26 x 30
- Capacity: 37 Gallons
- Weight: 35lbs
- Material: Polyethylene
Best Composter for City Living
Envirocycle’s The Most Beautiful Composter in the World: We get it, the title seems a tad braggy. One thing is for sure, it’s unique and effective, so we think that earns Envirocycle the right to call it whatever they’d like to. Another thing we can say about the looks of this composter is that it does fit in any environment, even a balcony or rooftop space.
It’s available in two size, and can produce both liquid and solid compost. There’s no assembly required, and it’s made from BPA free materials that are UV and antioxidant protected materials.
- Award: Best Composter for City Living
- Size: 25 x 21 x 27
- Capacity: 17 or 35 Gallons
- Weight: 24lbs
- Material: BPA free Plastics
Best Dual Chamber Steel Compost Tumbler
Jora 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.
- Award: Best Dual Chamber Steel Tumbler
- Size: 44 x 52 x 28 deep
- Capacity: 70 Gallons
- Weight: 82 lbs
- Material: Metal Exterior/Insulated Interior
- Best Feature: Insulated interior
Bonus Composter Review
Hungry Bin Flow-Through Worm Farm Composter: We threw this last one into the mix just to give you a third composting option. If you want to learn more about Wormeries and composting with worms, you can read more here.
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 an 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 than 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.
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.
If you’re not sold on composting, you can read more about the methods here. Also check out this quick video to hear about benefits to your garden.
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.