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Container Guide


Container Guide

We have some cost saving tips on how to choose the right can liner for your business. How to choose the right liner for your application can be a bit confusing. We have added some tips and charts on how to determine the right liner for you.

How high and wide is your trash can? What is the intended use of the liner? What is the gallon capacity for your receptacle? Remember to include a 3-to-4 inch overhang when determining the length for best results.

Determine a Size

Determine a Size

Ice Buckets

Print or Download Container Size Guide
Print / Download
Container Guide!

Size Liner
3 quart 12 x 12
Waste Baskets
Size (gallons) Liner
4 17 x 17
7 20 x 21
7 24 x 24
10 - 15 24 x 32
20 - 30 30 x 36
33 33 x 39
40 - 45 40 x 46
Round Top
Size (gallons) Liner
33 33 x 39
Size (gallons) Liner
23 28 x 42
40 - 45 40 x 46
56 43 x 47
Size (gallons) Liner
4 17 x 17
7 20 x 21
7 24 x 24
10 - 15 24 x 32
20 - 30 30 x 36
Size (gallons) Liner
33 33 x 39
40 - 45 40 x 46
55 36 x 58
60 38 x 58
Round Brute / Husky
Size (gallons) Liner
10 - 15 24 x 32
20 - 30 30 x 36
33 33 x 39
40 - 45 40 x 46
60 38 x 58

Calculating the Correct Bag Size

The most effective way to save costs is to size your liner correctly!
Round Containers
Calculating Correct Bag Size on Round Containers
Square or Rectangular Containers
Calculating Correct Bag Size on Square Containers
Convert MIC to MIL Equivalents
When you need tough bags, low density is the best choice. For thinner, more economical bags, see high density plastic bags below. Low density bags are measured in mils which is one thousandth (.001) of an inch. A higher mil count means a thicker bag.
MIC MIL Convert MIC to MIL Equivalents
6 .23
7 .27
8 .31
9 .35
10 .39
11 .43
12 .47
13 .51
14 .55
15 .59
16 .63
17 .67
18 .71
19 .75
20 .79
21 .83
22 .87
Case Weight Calculation
(width x length x mil) divided by 15 = Lbs (per 1000 bags)
Can Liner 101
Lesson 1 | Can Liner Basics

The Fundamentals

1: Plastic Type
Plastic Key Characterisitics
High-Density (HD)
  • Makes 'crinkley' noise when you move it
  • Harder to start or puncture a hole in than Low Density (LLD)
  • Once a hole is started, will spread quickly or "zipper"
  • Thinner than LLD, but can hold same or greatere weight as LLD liners
  • Gauge (thickness) measured in Micron (MIC)
  • Some suggested applications: cans without edges, paper, food, smooth heavy objects
  • Substantial cost savings on a per-liner basis
Linear Low-Density (LLD)
  • Quiet when moved - No "crinkly" sound
  • Easier to start or puncture a hole in than HD
  • A hole will spread less quickly than HD
  • Gauge (thickness) measured in MIL
  • Most common type in the industry
  • Recommended for sharper objects and tough transport conditions
2: Bottom Seals
Bottom Key Characteristics
Star Seal
  • Most common type in the market
  • Bottom of the bag looks like a star or appears "bunched up"
  • Conforms well to large round trash cans
  • Minimum leak potential
  • Most expensive and highest quality
  • Star seal liners are designated by two dimensions (i.e. 40 x 46)
Gusset Seal
  • A flat style bag
  • Both sides tuck in to form a gusset
  • If bag is lying flat it will have a third dimension like an expandable envelope
  • Conforms reasonably well to the shape of the trash can
  • May leak - potential for weak bottom
  • Least expensive
  • Gusset seal liners are designed by three dimensions (i.e. 23 x 17 x 46)
Flat Seal
  • Bag will lay out perfectly flat like a tube with a seal on one end or resemble a pillow case
  • Does not conform to the shape of the trash can
  • Holds 20-30% more than a star sealed
  • Medium leak potential
  • Flat seal liners are designated by two dimensions (e.g. 40 x 46)
3: Package Dispensing
Flat (Bulk Pack) Individually folded and boxed for one at-a-time dispensing
Coreless Rolls Does not have a cardboard cylinder center. Features perforated edges, or interleaved for non-perforated dispensing.
Cored Rolls Liners rolled together on top of a cardboard cylinder with perforated edges.
4: Static Load
Static load (lifting strength) is the best way to choose bag strength. Approximately gauge equivalents for static load are listed below:
Weight Linear Low Density High Density Strength Grade
Light Weight 0.36 - 0.49 Mil 7-9 For crumpled papers, cups, light waste, etc.
Medium Weight 0.50 - 0.60 Mil 10-12 Mic For packaging waste, wet paper, etc.
Heavy Weight 0.61 - 0.74 Mil 13-14 Mic For light wood, metal scraps, wet cardboard, etc.
Heavy Weight 0.75 - 0.80 Mil 15-17 Mic For heavy, sharp or wet trash
Super Tuff 0.81 - 1.0 Mil
Super Heavy 1.1 - 1.2 Mil
XXH 1.3 - 1.9 Mil 18-24 Mic
XXXH 2.0 - 3.0 Mil
Lesson 2 | Can Liner Considerations

The Helpful Tips When Choosing a Bag...

1. Choose bag size and bottom seal of the liner based on type of trash can being used
  • Some manufacturers will state liner sizes in "gallons" in an attempt to offer smaller liners that use less plastic
  • Most manufacturers use the item number to indicate the liner size even though it is not the actual size of the liner
  • Star searled can liners are the most expensive and highest quality since they conform better to larger, round trash cans
  • Gusset sealed bags are the least expensive and will tend to leak, unlike star seal or flat seal
2. Choose plastic type (HD or LLD)
  • High density liners are lower in cost than low density liners
  • Recycled plastic or repro liners yield a bag with a lower capacity for weight at a lower cost.
  • A thicker repro liner is needed to lift the same aount of static weight as a virgin resin bag
3. Verify the gauge or thickness of the liner
  • Some manufacturers avoid stating the actual thickness of the liners, an attempt to sell less plastic for a higher price
  • There is not governing agency to ensure that thicknesses listed on the carton is what is actually in the box. Weighing the case and comparing against other brands will help identify any differences. Less weight equals less plastic.
  • Many manufacturers will test liner samples in their lab to give you the actual mil/mic thickness of a competitive product for comparison purposes
4. Check how many liners are in the case and calculate the cost per can liner pricing
  • Fewer liners in a case gives the appearance of a better value because of the lower price
  • Calculating the cost per can liner will give you the true cost per use
5. When in doubt, weigh the case! This will help determine what's really in the box!
Brochure Courtesy of Novolex™

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