Waste collecting is an important duty that every community needs. Garbage truck toys like similar construction toys are a fun and engaging way to encourage development. They invite young children to play out these real-life practices using role play. Children love learning about the world around them and seeing how things work.
Waste and recycling truck toys offer a great way for kids to learn early on about the importance of sanitation. They can put their imagination to work as they carry out the important tasks of collecting and disposing of waste. These toys are great for young boys and girls alike so they are ideal for siblings and play dates.
Why Do Kids Like Garbage Trucks?
You might be surprised to learn how common it is for children to find a fascinating with garbage truck. To a child these loud trucks are captivating to watch as they come every week to pick up and take off with your trash. The science behind this fascination suggests it has to do with object permanence. The truck comes on a regular schedule, it picks up your garbage or recycling bin, collects the waste, then takes off and your trash is never to be seen again.
To get a better understanding on why kids are so drawn to these service vehicles we asked the experts for their thoughts! To quote the opinions of a 7 year old and a 4 year old ‘Garbage trucks are so cool. They have that arm that comes up and dumps all your trash inside. They’re fun to watch.” There you have it! Here’s a guide on some top picks of garbage truck toys sorted by age range.
Garbage Trucks for Toddlers
These garbage truck toys are big time favorites among toddlers and preschoolers. These are fun and engaging to play with to ignite imagination while helping build important motor skills. These are suitable for children 3 years and up.
Recommended ages: 18 months and up
- Garbage bins: comes with 2 detachable bins that fit perfectly in the lift.
- Movable parts: hatch opens, empty the toy bins with the lever and check on the engine.
- Soft wheels: soft and rubbery wheels are easy to roll anywhere – even the sandbox.
- Driver included: recycling toy truck’s friendly driver knows the route forward and back.
- Vintage look: sure to bring back lots of memories while your child discovers the power of imagination.
- Made of strong durable plastic
Trash day can be fun and exciting with this classic garbage truck toy. It comes with its own driver and two trash bins. A lever opens up the back where the trash cans are placed to be ready to load into the truck. The trash bins can hold small waste items such as paper or materials to unload into the garbage truck for your child’s imagination! The cab of the truck also lifts open to access the friendly driver inside who can be taken out to play with as well.
This little garbage truck is made toddler tough with durable plastic to withstand the demands of playtime. It’s also designed for small hands in mind making it easy to grip and manipulate the moving parts. The wheels are made with a soft rubber to roll smoothly along floors without scratching them. It will even roll in the sandbox! It has some parent-friendly features as well. For instance, the truck is easy to clean off after outdoor play. When playtime is over the trash bins fit conveniently inside where they can be easily found for the next play date.
Model 60220 | Recommended ages : 4 years and up
This kit allows young preschoolers to build their own garbage truck to keep LEGO City clean. It is designed with young builders in mind to be fun and easy. It’s a great starter for first time LEGO builders to construct a vehicle with moving components. The garbage truck also makes a great addition with other LEGO City sets your child might have to complete their collection. Every city needs a waste collection company after all.
There are 90 LEGO brick components and accessories to build from. A simple guide is included that is easy for young children to follow with detailed pictures. The garbage truck vehicle consists of a Starter Brick base, a 2 mini-figure cab, and tilting container. Also included are 2 LEGO mini-figures, a dumpster, a trash can, and additional garbage elements. The cab of the truck opens for the 2 waste collector mini-figures to sit inside. The additional accessories and garbage components encourage active imaginations as they role play.
The recommended age according to the manufacturer is listed for ages 4 and up due to small parts that can pose a choking hazard. With adult supervision this would be a fun toy for toddlers as young as two without the small accessories. As they get older they’ll continue to enjoy playing with it and adding role playing elements using the accessories.
Melissa & Doug Garbage Truck Wooden Vehicle
Recommended ages: 3 to 5 years
If you’re a fan of Melissa & Doug toys then you know they make great quality toys that inspire learning and creativity. This cool 3-piece wooden garbage truck set is no exception. The durable wooden toy truck features a rear-loading trash bin with arms that lift it up to dump waste into the back of the truck. The ‘garbage’ block empties out of the trash bin and can be reloaded again and again.
The truck rolls forward and backward so little movers can roll it around wherever there’s trash to be picked up. The trash bin is hand-operated to lift up the bin and empty into the garbage truck. It’s a simple yet classic toy favorite toddlers will enjoy as they let their imaginations run free.
Recommended ages: 3 to 15 years
This Tonka truck is one that can easily appeal to young preschoolers and grow with them. It is designed to look and sound just like the real thing with great attention to detail. The front fork lift is motorized to go up and down with the push of a lever. Additional buttons activate a horn beeping and flashing lights. The back of the truck opens for access.
The truck comes with a dumpster bin that fits on the front arms. Small items can be put in the loader to dump into the truck encouraging active imaginations. It is a pretty sizeable toy truck measuring 8 ½” tall and 16 ½” long. It requires 3 AA batteries to operate the power arm, lights and sounds.
Realistic Garbage Truck Toys
For school aged kids that love vehicles these garbage trucks have some major cool factors. These truck models offer realistic features and functions that are a little more advanced to appeal to older kids.
Matchbox Garbage Truck
Recommended ages: 3 to 7 years
This is a large-scale garbage truck that really measures up! It’s 15-inches tall and has many cool features for that realistic factor kids will love. This garbage/waste truck has a side loading bin to dump trash or recycle waste into the large truck container. A lever allows the ‘operator’ to move the trash bin up and dump waste or recycling into the truck while activating realistic sounds. The truck can also be unloaded for endless hours of play time.
There are many cool sounds that are activated with motion. Pushing the truck forward or pulling it back will activate beeping sounds imitating the real truck’s beeping when in reverse. This element adds a valuable learning skill on cause and effect for toddlers. Additional buttons on top of the truck activate a beeping horn and lights to come on. So many neat and realistic functions of this truck inspire young minds to carry out the duties of our everyday heroes through interactive play. This truck requires 3 AA batteries.
Bruder Toys Man TGS Side Loading Garbage Truck 03761
Recommended age: 4 years and up
This garbage truck is not your typical toddler toy. This bad boy is massive scaling 1:16 and the makers didn’t skip attention to detail. It functions just like a real waste collecting truck with a loading arm that grasps the trash bin and lifts it to dump trash into the loader. A hand-operated lever on the other side of the truck operates the screw-type compactors inside to move garbage. The tailgate of the truck opens and the loader tilts to empty the contents.
The MAN TGS garbage truck comes with 2 trash bins that load onto the arm (manually). It features a cab with doors that open and is compatible with other Bruder World figures. These are sold separately. It’s a really fun toy to watch in action as young kids turn the knob to grab and lift the little trash bin and operate the lever for the compactors.
The durable build of this truck made from high quality plastics provide a suitable toy for indoor or outdoor play. The moving parts of the truck are all operated by hand so no batteries are required. It’s a great development toy to help build fine motor skills in young preschoolers.
PLAYMOBIL Green Recycling Truck
Recommended ages: 4-10 years
If you have multiple children close in age, this recycling truck offers fun and engaging play between siblings or for play dates. It has many cool features with a lift to empty the recycling bin into the truck. The truck comes with two mini figures and a recycling waste bin with additional ‘trash’ accessories. What’s really cool is the action figures have movable parts that bend to sit, stand and turn their heads.
The truck build is very durable to withstand playtime. It features rubber wheels so it won’t scratch up floors as it glides along. The truck comes mostly pre-assembled but many of the parts come off and can easily be placed back on. This factor allows the truck to withstand abuse from falls or drops without actually breaking. There are no batteries required as it relies all on your child’s imagination and fine motor skills.
Bruder Toys MACK Granite Garbage Truck
Recommended ages: 3 to 15 years
This is another Bruder Toys garbage truck designed to imitate a real garbage truck with additional features. It’s a fun and engaging toy that is great for honing fine motor skills and can easily grow with your child. There are many movable components throughout the truck from front to back. The front hood opens up to reveal an engine and the cab doors open. The side mirrors can move as well.
On the back side there is a lever that lifts the two garbage bins included to be dumped into the loader. There is a functioning compactor mechanism that scoops up the trash with the turn of a dial on the side of the truck. A knob on top of the truck activates a mechanism inside that pushes the ‘trash’ to the rear of the truck and lifts the tailgate to empty it. All of the movable components throughout the truck are activated by hand. There is a light and sound module available for purchase separately that can be installed to this truck if you wish to add more fun elements.
These garbage truck toys are sure to excite your truck loving enthusiast for their next birthday or Christmas gift! While your young fan awaits the next visit from their favorite waste collector they can partake in their own waste collection at home!