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5 Places You Should Never Keep Your Trash in Your Home

These storage solutions may cause you more problems in the long run.

Many of us strive to keep our place pristine, treating our home like it was pulled straight from the pages of Architectural Digest. But the messy reality of actually living in a house is that trash will build up in one way or another, and you're gonna need somewhere to store it. In an effort to maintain a tidy aesthetic, you may be tempted to try out different storage ideas to get your can out of sight or otherwise disguise your garbage. But not every spot in your home is a safe one, according to experts. Read on to find out the five places you should never store your trash.

READ THIS NEXT: 5 Items You Should Never Store in Your Pantry, According to Experts.

Under the kitchen sink

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Many people keep their trash in the kitchen because of the convenience. But in order to lessen smells and prevent an unsightly look, some of us prefer to store these garbage cans in unused cabinet space—like under the kitchen sink.

Matt Hagens, general contractor and founder of Mr Kitchen Faucets, advises against this practice, however.

"Think about the classic 'under the sink' spot. It's neatly tucked away and handy, right? But, let me tell you, it's a potential disaster zone," he says. "Those sink pipes have a knack for springing a leak. Next thing you know, your garbage is drenched, stinking up the place and sending out a welcome mat for pests. Not exactly what you signed up for while discarding dinner scraps, is it?"

Next to your dishwasher

Closeup of dishwasher with a plates, cups and other dishware

You should also never keep your trash next to your dishwasher, according to Jay Sanders, a home contractor and owner of the Baltimore-based home remodeling company Castle Dream Basement Waterproofing. As it turns out, the moisture and heat coming from your dishwasher and seeping into your garbage can create a health hazard.

"Storing your trash in a moist, warm, or damp environment is a breeding ground for mold and mildew," Sanders explains. "As a contractor I have witnessed mold infestations from damp trash cans that were left in areas that were not ideal. Mold is very dangerous for your health and breaks down the structure of your home over time."

Near your air conditioner

A old window unit air conditioner still being used by people whom don't have central air.

Even as a temporary measure, Ahmad Jamal, a professional cleaner and content manager for CleanersAdvisor, says one of the biggest mistakes homeowners can make is leaving their trash near an air conditioner.

"This can lead to an unpleasant odor that can potentially run from the trash to the whole house through the ventilation system," Jamal warns.

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Inside your pantry

Woman in pantry with groceries, wooden rack for storing food in the kitchen.

While you may not have ever considered keeping your trash in your pantry, Hagens says many people actually use this as a secret storage spot for their garbage can. But that doesn't mean it's the right thing to do.

"Not the brightest idea, unfortunately," Hagens says. "The pantry is for food, not foul odors seeping into your breakfast cereals. Add in the allure for bugs drawn to food scraps and you're staring at a pantry-turned-bug-motel. An unpleasant picture, isn't it?"

Areas with direct sunlight

Living room with part of sofa in sunny day and white cushion interior background concept.

If you're thinking about sneaking your trash can into whatever empty corner you can find, just make sure it's not near any windows. Muffetta Krueger, a cleaning expert and founder of housekeeping company Muffetta's Domestic Assistants, says putting your garbage in an area that is exposed to direct sunlight can easily speed up the decomposition process.

"This may lead to the release of foul odors and attract flies and other pests," Krueger warns. "Additionally, excessive heat can cause trash bags to break or leak, causing further mess and potential contamination."

Kali Coleman
Kali Coleman is a Senior Editor at Best Life. Her primary focus is covering news, where she often keeps readers informed on the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic and up-to-date on the latest retail closures. Read more
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