Dumpster Diving in Pennsylvania: A Comprehensive Guide

Wondering how to start your dumpster diving quest in Pennsylvania? Well! understanding the laws and regulations of your state is a great start. We’ll go over a range of trash diving strategies and rules in Pennsylvania in this comprehensive guide. Moreover, I’ll give you some tips along the road on how to make the most of your treasure quest.

Dumpster Diving in Pennsylvania

The Keystone State offers a total of 134 shopping malls and complexes, making it one of the country’s most popular trash diving locations. The good news is that there are 9563 stores in these shopping centers and malls. In wealthier areas of Pennsylvania, such as Jefferson Hills, Fox Chapel, Pleasant Hills, Franklin Park, and Kennett Square, dumpster diving is also very popular. As a result, Pennsylvania has everything, whether you want to go trash diving in these rich neighborhoods or shop at malls and retail stores.

Related: Dumpster Diving in Indiana: A Comprehensive Guide

Is Dumpster Diving Illegal in Pennsylvania?

In Pennsylvania, dumpster diving is not illegal. In fact, dumpster diving is entirely legal in this state. You must, however, adhere to your state’s trespassing laws as well as the city or municipality’s policies and statutes. In Pennsylvania, trespassing tickets may be issued for dumpster diving without permission, as every business and private residence is considered private property.

In most Pennsylvania communities, there are no regulations forbidding you from diving into dumpsters located on public property, such as garbage collection curbs.

According to the landmark United States Supreme Court case California v. Greenwood, a person or a business has effectively abandoned ownership rights to items tossed in public dumpsters across the country.

You could be charged with trespass or theft if you try to search through the dumpster while it is still inside a private house in Pennsylvania. If you enter private property to try dumpster diving despite a clearly visible ‘No Trespassing’ sign, you may be charged with trespassing, and the business in Pennsylvania has the ability to permanently ban you from their premises. You could be prosecuted for disorderly behavior, illegal dumping, or littering.

As a result, you might want to reconsider trash diving in that region if you need to unlock a fence, a gate, or enter private property. Those aren’t the best trash diving places in Pennsylvania, especially if you lack all of the necessary permits and licenses.

Is Dumpster Diving at night illegal in Pennsylvania?

In Pennsylvania, dumpster diving at night is not forbidden. In truth, the restrictions are the same whether you dive dumpsters during the day or at night. Trash scavenging in residential areas at night, on the other hand, appears to be highly hazardous. It’s possible that an officer will be sent to your place. Furthermore, trash diving in Pennsylvania late at night attracts a considerably larger crowd. Because they prefer seclusion, most dumpster divers prefer to go dumpster diving at night. Dumpster diving in Pennsylvania is best done early in the morning or just after dusk, in my opinion.

Best places to go dumpster diving in Pennsylvania

There are a lot of great trash diving places in Pennsylvania. However, I’ve compiled a list of the top places in PA where you can start dumpster diving while making money.

  1. Construction Sites
  2. Hardware Stores
  3. Grocery Stores
  4. Yard and Garage Sales
  5. Cosmetic Stores
  6. Retail Stores (Walmart, Target, K-mart, etc.)
Related: Dumpster Diving at Walmart: Legal or Illegal?

How much money can you make dumpster diving in Pennsylvania?

A variety of factors influence the answer to this question. Many people in Pennsylvania go trash diving to uncover recyclable items that they can sell and profit from. Others may wish to begin garbage diving in order to obtain food or groceries for personal consumption. Many people go trash diving to find electronics, gadgets, books, and furniture to sell on eBay or Facebook Marketplace.

In Pennsylvania, garbage diving as a full-time career will be really hard to continue. I don’t mean to imply that it’s impossible. This New York dumpster diving couple found goods worth over $155,000 within 2 years of the quest as a side hustle. It demonstrates that it is doable, but if you want to earn a living dumpster diving in Pennsylvania, you must commit yourself full-time.

So, how much money can you make trash diving in Pennsylvania? We spoke with five full-time professional trash divers in Pennsylvania. They all agreed that full-time garbage diving can pay up to $1800 per week in Pennsylvania. (At least 40 hours per week)

Final Thoughts

Overall, trash diving is not against the law in Pennsylvania. However, there may be rules forbidding trash diving depending on your city or county. As a result, double-check each municipality’s city code, which may be found for free online. Follow the “Trespass after Warning” statute in Pennsylvania, as well as local ordinances and some common sense.