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7 Best Garbage Truck Toys (2022 Reviews)

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It’s no secret that kiddos love watching garbage trucks make their early morning rounds. The lights, sounds, and functions of garbage trucks have captured the imaginations of children for generations and have even inspired popular cartoons to integrate the vehicle into their shows. From remote-control garbage trucks to the recycling vehicle driven by Paw Patrol’s Rocky, here are the seven best toys celebrating waste management.

Best Garbage Truck Toys

  • 1. Fisher-Price Little People Recycling Truck

    (Best for younger kids — $)

    Why it’s great: One of the more affordable recycling truck toys available, this Fisher-Price Little People toy plays lots of fun songs, sounds, and phrases about recycling. Kids will love putting the sanitation worker in the driver seat, which activates a slew of sound effects. This push-along truck also has a working arm that kids can maneuver to put items into the back of the truck. Parents praise this recycling truck toy for helping little ones learn about recycling and develop their fine and gross motor skills.

    Keep in mind: This recycling truck requires two AA batteries to operate, which are included with purchase.

    Good for: Younger kids as this recycling truck toy is recommended for children ages 1-5.

  • 2. Educational Insights Design & Drill Bolt Buddies Recycling Truck Toy

    (Most educational — $$)

    Why it’s great: This Design and Drill recycling truck toy is designed to introduce kids to early STEM concepts and comes with a working (but kid-friendly) power drill. Little ones will love using the drill to screw in the wheels and bolts as well as to activate the truck’s lift arm. This recycling truck toy also comes with a Bolt Buddy figurine and cat co-pilot, both of which can ride inside the truck.

    Keep in mind: This recycling truck requires three AAA batteries to operate, which are NOT included with purchase.

    Good for: Kids ages three and up as this truck has small parts that can pose a choking hazard for younger kids.

  • 3. DOUBLE E Benz Licensed Remote-Control Garbage Truck

    (Best remote-control garbage truck toy — $$$)

    Why it’s great: This Benz-licensed remote-control garbage truck is perfect for kids who want a top-tier toy modeled after their favorite sanitation vehicle. This garbage truck comes with all the bells and whistles, including real-life lights and sounds, 4-wheel drive, and durable rubber tires that are suitable for multiple types of terrains. This garbage truck is designed to move forward and backward, turn left and right, and pick up garbage. Best of all, a 2.4Ghz radio control allows multiple remote-control trucks to work together.

    Keep in mind: This garbage truck toy requires one AA battery to operate, which is included with purchase.

    Good for: Older kids as this garbage truck toy require more advanced cognitive and motor skills to operate.

  • 4. PAW Patrol - Rocky’s Recycle Truck Vehicle with Collectible Figure

    (Easiest to assemble — $)

    Why it’s great: This adorable Paw Patrol toy is perfect for fans of the hit show, especially the character Rocky, who drives a recycling truck. This toy is sold as a set and includes a Rocky figurine as well as his signature recycling vehicle. Designed to look just like the recycling truck on the show, this toy has working wheels, a moving forklift, and a back hatch that opens and closes.

    Keep in mind: Some customers say they expected this toy to be bigger than it is.

    Good for: Paw Patrol fans as this recycling truck looks just like the one featured on the show.

  • 5. Friction Powered Waste Management Truck Toy

    (Best special effects — $$)

    Why it’s great: This garbage truck toy comes with lots of fun accessories that lend to an engaging and interactive playtime. Kids will love assembling this garbage truck using the included pieces, which are designed for a DIY experience. This garbage truck also features lots of realistic lights and sounds as well as a sorting game that helps kids learn how to organize waste. Parents praise this garbage truck for its high-quality special effects and educational value.

    Keep in mind: Some customers say their garbage truck didn’t come with all the necessary parts, so be sure to check your shipment closely in case you need to exchange or return it.

    Good for: Gifting as this garbage truck hits all the marks—affordable, entertaining, and educational!

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  • 6. Toy Vehicles 3 Pack - Sanitation Truck, Garbage Truck & Water Tanker

    (Best value — $)

    Why it’s great: This set of friction-powered waste management vehicles comes with a sanitation truck, garbage truck, and water tanker. Each vehicle’s accessories can be lifted or rotated to simulate real-life role-play. This set of vehicles also comes with two sanitation worker figurines and a collection of road cones and signs. Best of all, none of the vehicles require batteries as they’re all friction powered.

    Keep in mind: Some customers say these sanitation vehicles weren’t as durable as they’d hoped.

    Good for: Kids who want a smaller set of sanitation vehicles to add to their collection of toy cars.

  • 7. Blippi Recycling Truck

    (Most durable — $$)

    Why it’s great: This adorable Blippi recycling truck will look familiar to fans of the show. This recycling truck has a working arm that can lift and dump garbage into the back of the truck. Featuring seven Blippi sounds and phrases, this recycling truck also comes with a Blippi figurine as well as two garbage cans with trash inside. Parents praise this set for being popular with kids and built to last.

    Keep in mind: Some customers say that this toy can be tough for kids younger than three to operate on their own.

    Good for: Fans of the show Blippi, which happens to have a popular song about sanitation vehicles.

Best Overall

The Fisher-Price Little People Recycling Truck is our overall top recommendation. It's the highest quality product we have found with the most affordable price making it the best value on our list..

FAQs about Garbage Truck Toys

  • 1. What should I consider when shopping for garbage truck toys?

    The most important things to consider when shopping for garbage truck toys are your child’s age and capabilities as well as a product’s durability and design. You’ll want to find a garbage truck toy that’s age appropriate to ensure your little one will enjoy playing with it. You’ll also want to find a garbage truck toy that’s made from quality materials and built to last. Garbage truck toys come in many different sizes and with a variety of functions, so you’ll want to find one that fits with your little one’s interests. For example, if your kiddo loves Paw Patrol, Rocky’s recycling truck might be a good option. For older kids interested in learning about STEM, a DIY garbage truck designed to be built from scratch might be the best choice. Cost is another important factor but fortunately, most garbage trucks are sold at an affordable price point.

  • 2. What’s the best age for garbage truck toys?

    Garbage truck toys are designed for a wide range of ages and capabilities. Garbage truck toys intended for younger kids are typically smaller and include features that help develop fine and gross motor skill. Garbage truck toys intended for older kids will have more advanced features, such as remote-control capabilities or building components. If you’re not sure whether a garbage truck toy is right for your little one, check the product’s age recommendations and any available customer reviews for additional insight.

  • 3. Are there any safety hazards when it comes to garbage truck toys?

    Most garbage truck toys are designed to be safe for kids to play with and are made from non-toxic materials. However, some garbage truck toys do come with small parts that can pose a choking hazard, making them a better option for kids over the age of three.

  • 4. Do garbage truck toys require assembly?

    This depends on which type of garbage truck toy you purchase. Some garbage truck toys come assembled straight from the box. Others are designed to be a DIY building experience that kids put together themselves. Which type of garbage truck toy will be right for you will depend on your child’s age and capabilities as well as the type of playtime experience they’re looking for.

  • 5. What’s the difference between a garbage truck toy and a recycling truck toy?

    There’s not much difference between toys that are marketed as a garbage truck versus a recycling truck. In recent years, there has been a shift toward recycling truck toys in an effort to teach kids the importance of recycling for the environment.

Conclusion

Garbage trucks are loud, messy, and have lots of moving parts, making them an exciting sight to behold for kiddos. Garbage truck toys aim to capture the magic of the real thing with lights, sounds, and functional features like working lifts and hatchbacks that open and close. There’s a wide variety of garbage truck toys on the market, including those inspired by kids’ cartoon shows and those that incorporate STEM components for a more educational experience. Garbage truck toys are generally affordable and appropriate for a wide range of ages. They’re also a safe and easy way to support your little one’s enthusiasm for their local waste-management team.