How can I reuse or recycle washing machine drums?

Washing machine drum turned into an ottomanWe’ve had an email from Nathalie, telling us about the fab ottoman she made from an old washing machine drum (links includes full instructions). She also links to another site where one has been turned into a floor lamp – very cool.

Involving less crafts, I’ve also seen them used as planters in allotments (since the holes let excess water drain away) and an outside toy bin in a garden – so they’re obviously versatile little chaps but has anyone else got any other suggestions?

(Image courtesy of Nathalie and Esprit Cabane)

(Oh, and we got a mention on Zaproot yesterday – a cool eco-show. If you’re already here, you already know about us of course but still, it’s nice to be mentioned.)

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66 Responses to “How can I reuse or recycle washing machine drums?”

  1. Thifty Misty says:

    i have seen them made into chandeliers. it looked pretty cool.

    Also i think they could be neat as a pet bed. Turn it on its side and attach a pillow (or make your own) and there you go. it will give your loving companion shade outside while you work in the garden.

  2. Grammar14564 says:

    I’ve been hearing about people who use them as a fire pit. One person even made a stand to take it with them when camping.

  3. Missy says:

    That floor lamp is pretty groovy, not to mention it looks super sleek.

    Great re-use project!

    P.S. Thanxs for linking to our green blog, Keetsa.


  4. Anonymous says:

    compost tumbler

  5. Anonymous says:

    I have seen the fire pit and it is entrancing!

  6. Saccades says:

    Turned into a garden heater


    With the drum included

    Having the 2 seperate means I can replace the drum when it gets burnt/rusted through. Got my drum free from the recycling centre.

  7. Susie says:

    I really love this table made out of a washing machine drum:

  8. festi says:

    hi, these drums make wicked fire pits. you can make a tripod to rest them on so they are slighty risen of the ground. we take one with us on all our camping trips and its great!

  9. Flu-Bird says:

    I makes a neet table and the cute little bird is taking a rest

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    Please can I have one that would fit a larger hot water bottle. It says so size 13 on the top the bottle. We have lost ours and it’s brand new. I will pay postage. It must be in working order.

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  29. Ms L. says:

    BBQ! Have the open end of the drum facing upwards and load with coal or wood. We put a thin sheet of metal over the top and cook on it in the summer. When it’s colder, makes A great campfire that can be easily monitored (also, you can spin it – not that I condone playing with fire!)

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  32. GlenG says:

    I’ve seen one used as a “drainage well”. In a damp part of a garden a hole was dug and the drum put in, open end upwards. After a time, it filled with water which could be used for buckets or a watering can. The area has to be boggy or wet, and of course the water should only be used for watering plants or similar, It can take up to 24 hours to refill depending no how wet the area is.

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