Our Top Picks
Best Overall: Whirlpool Undercounter Compactor at Home Depot
"Reduces household waste by 75 percent and has a sleek design."
Runner-Up, Best Overall: KitchenAid Built-In Compactor at Home Depot
"Comes with noise-reduction technology and an odor management system."
Best Budget: Step N Sort Compacting Trash Can at Amazon
"An effective trash compactor that's also one of the cheapest on the market."
Best Portable: Gladiator Freestanding Compactor at Home Depot
"Its four heavy-duty rubber wheels make it easy to maneuver."
Best Manual: Household Essentials Trash Krusher at Amazon
"All you have to do is press down on a handle placed at the top of the lid."
Best Freestanding: Whirlpool Convertible Compactor at Home Depot
"The item’s design allows it to stand freely or be installed under the counter."
Best Undercounter: GE 15-Inch Built-In Trash Compactor at Home Depot
"Can be ordered panel-ready, perfect for blending in with your cabinets."
01 of 07
Best Overall: Whirlpool 15-Inch Undercounter Trash Compactor
With a powerful 4-to-1 compression ratio, Whirlpool’s undercounter trash compactor reduces household waste by 75 percent and turns garbage night from a weekly chore to a simple once-a-month affair. Say goodbye to pricy trash bags and hectic early-morning trips to beat the garbage truck to the end of your driveway.
The product’s other key features include a storage capacity of 10.5 gallons, a convenient touch-toe pedal for when your hands are full, and a 1/3 HP motor. Thanks to its sleek stainless steel design, this trash compactor blends in with any home décor and fits discreetly beneath your kitchen counter.
Whirlpool is one of the most trusted names in home appliances, and this is their most trusted trash compactor. Its price is slightly higher than many other undercounter trash compactors, circling the $1,000 mark, but it still provides one of the best combinations of price and quality on the market.
02 of 07
Runner-Up, Best Overall: KitchenAid 15-Inch Built-In Trash Compactor
Top-quality comes at top cost. While the price of this trash compactor from KitchenAid does vary, you should expect to pay at least $1,000 for the unit.
All that being said, however, trash compactors are typically a pricey endeavor, so paying a few hundred bucks more for one as outstanding as KitchenAid’s 15-Inch Built-In Trash Compactor might be worth it in the long run.
With outstanding customer reviews, a powerful 5-to-1 compression ratio, and an array of high-end features, this is one of the best trash compactors you can buy. It will save you time, putting fewer garbage days on the chore wheel; it will save you money, cutting down on the cost of garbage bags; and it will shrink your environmental footprint by reducing your household waste by 80 percent.
The item also comes with noise-reduction technology, an odor management system (here are more tips on how to get rid of garbage smells), and a long-lasting 1/3 HP motor. So, it’s no wonder the product has received glowing praise from customers across various retailers, with the majority of people awarding it five stars.
03 of 07
Best Budget: Step N Sort Compacting Trash Can
The Step N Sort Compacting Trash Can is a double money saver. Not only will it help you cut back on pricy garbage bags, but it’s also one of the cheapest trash compactors on the market.
The bargain price doesn’t affect the reviews, however. Most customers praised the product for its effectiveness, ease-of-use, and for how well it blends in inside the home. This model compacts garbage to a third of its size, holds up to 11 gallons of waste, and has a removable inner trash bucket for easy disposal. Its small size and stainless steel design make it as discreet as a normal trash can, and a step pedal at the bottom of the can is convenient for when your hands are full.
Take note that this is a manual trash compactor, not an automated one. Users simply compact the trash by pushing down on a handle placed on the lid of the can.
Still can't decide on what you want? Our round-up of the best garbage disposals can help you find what you're looking for.
04 of 07
Best Portable: Gladiator 15-Inch Freestanding Trash Compactor
No trash compactor is easier to move and maneuver than Gladiator’s 15-Inch Freestanding Trash Compactor. Its four heavy-duty rubber wheels allow you to take the item from the kitchen to the pantry and then to the garage without breaking a sweat.
While some customers note that it isn’t the strongest trash compactor on the market, it still has a 4-to-1 compression ratio, which will certainly put a big dent in your household waste.
Other specifications include a convenient foot pedal to help open the bin, an anti-jam feature that ensures reliable compaction even with a heavy load, and a hammered granite finish that makes the trash compactor both durable and modern looking.
Aside from scattered critiques regarding the item’s strength, the vast majority of users give the product positive reviews. Praise ranges from its slightly below average price to its ease-of-use to, of course, its portability.
Looking for a regular trash can for your kitchen, too? Check out our guide to the best kitchen trash cans.Continue to 5 of 7 below.
05 of 07
Best Manual: Household Essentials Trash Krusher Manual Trash Compactor
From cars to screwdrivers to coffee makers, going manual saves loads of money. And trash compactors are no different.
Household Essentials’ Trash Krusher is a bargain, clocking in around $100 at most retailers. Compare that to automatic trash compactors, many of which run over four figures, and a little elbow grease doesn’t sound so bad.
The Trash Krusher isn’t going to be the most powerful trash compactor on the market, but it will still reduce your household waste while saving you plenty of garbage bags and trips to the curb. The item has a 10-gallon capacity, which is comparable to many high-end trash compactors, and it also comes equipped with a soft-touch foot pedal and a slow-close lid.
Plus, manual compaction is much easier than it seems. All you have to do is press down on a handle placed at the top of the lid to crush your garbage to a fraction of its original size.
06 of 07
Best Freestanding: Whirlpool 15-Inch Convertible Trash Compactor
We chose this Whirlpool option as the best freestanding trash compactor precisely because it offers more than that. The item’s convertible design allows it to stand freely or be installed under the counter, making it the best of both worlds.
The Whirlpool 15-Inch Convertible Trash Compactor is also a great aesthetic choice because of its multiple color options. Whether you leave the trash compactor out in the open for everyone to see or tucked discreetly under your counter, you can choose the perfect color to complement your kitchen décor.
The product is slightly more expensive than the average trash compactor, but it comes with a solid 4-to-1 compression ratio, a capacity of 10.5 gallons, and a toe-touch pedal that’s extra useful when your hands are full.
If you’re looking for other appliances to help keep your home tidy, take a peek at our round-up of the best washer and dryer sets.
07 of 07
Best Undercounter: GE 15-Inch Built-In Trash Compactor
One major concern when purchasing an undercounter trash compactor is how it will look in your kitchen. They can often be bulky, gaudy, or a flat-out disaster with the décor.
That’s why GE’s 15-Inch Built-In Trash Compactor, with its sleek and stylish design, separates itself as the best undercounter appliances you can buy. The item is available in three color options—white, black, and stainless steel—and it can also be ordered panel-ready, perfect for blending in with your cabinets and cupboards. Even the control panel is hidden away to enhance the seamless design.
But this trash compactor isn’t all beauty and no brawn. It compresses waste by 75 percent, holds up to 10.5 gallons of garbage, and it comes with a variety of handy features, including a toe-touch pedal, rear wheels, and a removable drawer for quick and easy cleaning. The product varies in price depending on which color option you choose, but most lean toward the more expensive end of the trash compactor spectrum.
Our writers spent 20 hours researching the most popular trash compactors on the market. Before making their final recommendations, they considered 15 different trash compactors overall, screened options from 5 different brands and manufacturers, read over 50 user reviews (both positive and negative).