Are you wondering how to find free pallets for DIY projects? Well, you are not alone! We receive this question so much that we decided to write an article on how to find free pallets so that you can create your projects with a lot less money.
In fact, pallet projects are one of the top all-time DIY projects on Pinterest, Facebook, and the web. Even on our site, the pallet projects we share are the #1 DIY posts.
So we get it! Pallets are awesome. Free pallets are even more awesome!
We want to share a few spots that we have found and seen free pallets for the taking. There are probably more ideas as well, so if you have ideas, please share in the comments below to help everyone out!
How To Find Free Pallets
Search the classifieds
The first place to check for how to get free pallets and one that we check and end up using the most are the free classifieds in our area. We live in the suburbs of a small big town, so if we can find a plethora of free pallets just on the local classifieds, then you likely will too.
Here are some examples I found in the first minute of searching our local classifieds as I prepared this article:
We have a well-used local classified listing in our area that even beats out Craig’s List, but Craig’s List is always an option too.
And if you live in a small rural area without a big town close by, your chances are still high because rural areas mean small businesses and rural businesses whose equipment often comes on pallets more so than a big city. That leads us into our next point.
Visit small businesses
Small businesses actually have a better likelihood of having free pallets vs. corporations and large businesses.
Because large business, chain stores, and corporations generally have a recycling contract with pallet manufacturers or distributors for the pallets to be picked up and reused.
Small businesses don’t generally generate enough business to have a program in place like this, but they get enough shipments on pallets that they are wanting to find ways to get rid of them that doesn’t cost them money. Thus FREE pallets for DIYers!
Ask on social media
This might be the least obvious place on how to get free pallets, but in someways, it should be the first place you start!
I know I mention using social media a lot as a tip for a lot of things in life, but this is yet one area. If you just simply ask on your Facebook wall, you might be surprised how many of your friends have the exact answer you need, and even more helpful for those friends that live in your local area. Your friends are the best source of answers to a lot of things! You will probably get more responses and offers for free pallets than you will know what to do with!
Visit online garage sales
Also, we are a part of local online garage sales that are in our area. Like three of them, and each has several thousand locals selling anything and everything. Watch for pallets in these garage sale groups, including free stuff. You can also ask if anyone has free pallets! Again, you will receive a ton of response. People (and small businesses) would rather have someone pick these up for free then themselves having the expense and time trying to trash them!
Search Construction sites or businesses
It’s probably obvious that many construction sites or construction businesses will have pallets. The question becomes if they are giving them out for free or giving them out at all. Since there are thousands of possibilities here, it’s best to visit a local one and ask! We often hear that there is a good percentage of the construction sites or businesses that people are able to take some free pallets off their hands.
Visit or Call the Newspaper Agency
When we were growing up, my mom always stopped by the newspaper agency to pick up super cheap newspaper end rolls for craft projects galore. I do the same today, but the other benefit of stopping by these spots is that they very often have too many pallets to know what to do with. They will often give pallets for free or a small fee. It’s a goldmine of pallets that are probably not tarnished with nasty chemicals and other questionable uses.
Finally, similar to the newspaper agency, many bookstores, magazine distributors and printers ship their materials on pallets. So you can often find a free source if you live near any of these types of businesses. And like the newspaper pallets, they are likely a safer source due to untreated pallets.
Finally, there are a few rules when looking for pallets.
You will certainly want to find pallets “safe” for use. Many can be treated with chemicals that would be unsafe for most reuse and DIY project purposes. We have shared some of this in a previous article called Everything You Need To Know About Pallets.
There are also pallets that have special codes and markings, which often means these pallets are actually owned by someone and taking them is against the law. It is also something that is strictly enforced by the owners and can often lead to unpleasant legal ramifications. Here’s an article that lays out what the markings mean and what to watch for when searching for free pallets.
See the DIY Projects for ideas for those Pallets!