53 Frugal Uses for FREE Buckets

53 Frugal Uses for FREE Buckets

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53 uses for FREE buckets! I LOVE 5 gallon buckets, well I THOUGHT I did until I found how how expensive they were. Then I found out how I could get FREE buckets

I LOVE 5 gallon buckets… well… I THOUGHT I did until I found how how expensive they were.   BUT then…I found out how I could get FREE buckets that were 2.5-3 gallons and were even BETTER than the 5 gallon ones! Because 5 gallon buckets are SO expensive (I mean, they are just a bucket), I am 100% willing to transition to a smaller FREE bucket! Check out my post HERE on how you can get them for free!

I now prefer the 3 gallon ones because they aren’t as bulky, and are so much lighter when I use it for bulk food storage.

Outside uses for Buckets


  • Garden planters (drill holes in the bottom), and easy to move towards the sun
  • Grow hanging tomatoes-  click HERE for a tutorial
  • Use it for composting HERE 
  • Create a hanging strawberry garden HERE
  • Learn how to grow potatoes with them HERE
  • Grow a Mushroom farm HERE


  • Carry warm water out to the chickens in the winter time
  • Make a chicken watering device like THIS  or THIS
  • Use it for chicken nesting boxes like shown HERE
  • Make a chicken feeder HERE
  • Turn it into a bee hive  HERE
  • Love Birds?  Make them a house like THIS


  • Store garbage
  • Put old car oil or grease in
  • Store Charcoal
  • Store camping gear such as bungee cords, tent stakes, ect.
  • Great for Extension Cord Storage like HERE


  • Create outdoor chairs for camping like HERE
  • Make a “Hillbilly Washing Machine” by clicking HERE*Create a camp shower- learn how HERE
  • DIY Bucket Swamp cooler instructions HERE
  • Create a “pump” outdoor sink HERE
  • Turn it into a “fishing gear” bucket
  • Turn them into a fish trap HERE
  • Use it as a bucket backpack HERE
  • Make a Bucket Light  like THIS
  • Check out how they made a rain water purifier HERE

Indoor Uses


  • toy storage
  • clothing storage
  • “water table”  be sure to supervise your children and do so at your own risk
  • Foot stools (Use with caution, they aren’t the most stable when empty)
  • Store outdoor toys in with lid to keep from getting wet
  • Re-purpose it into a kids chair like they did HERE  or HERE
  • Make a camping toilet like THIS or THIS
  • Use as sensory “bin”.  fill full with rice and/or beans.  OR store your sensory items in it
  • Create a bucket swing  HERE
  • Use as a cloth diaper pail like HERE
  • Create a “Pediatric seat” HERE
  • Make a wishing well  HERE
  • Create a PVC frame use the buckets for toy storage like THIS

Food Storage

  • Store bulk items such as wheat, flour, sugar, rice, beans, ect.  Click HERE  to see how I use it to store my food.  (You may want to use Mylar bags if they will be store for long periods)  THIS is a great blog with tips on how to use those.
  • 72 hr kit storage
  • Learn how to make a Water Filter with them HERE

Home Improvement

  • Mix cement or mud for drywall
  • Great use for using a paint roller… see HERE
  • Seems like tools are always scattered in the garage, you can create a “Tool Bucket”  HERE

In the Home

  • Foot stools
  • Turn it into a cute Ottoman like HERE
  • Use as laundry baskets/buckets
  • Garbage cans- Pretty much EVERY room in our house where our “Guests” don’t really visit or use our garbage
  • Create a “Gift Wrapping Bucket” HERE
  • Make a mouse trap HERE
  • Build an “Art Bucket”  HERE Like shown in #5
  • Finally, fill it full of tools for a “house warming gift”
  • Store your 72-Hour Kit or Bug out Bag in it

As a result, 53 outdoor and indoor uses for buckets!  Now, go to your closest grocery store with a larger bakery and ask away to take a few home!  It’s usually easier to find them in the winter vs summer times.

This post may contain affiliate links.  Read my affiliate link disclosure here

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