A five gallon bucket is what you are most likely to be getting your paint in for many home painting projects. A bathroom or similar small area you’ll likely get a gallon or two.
The vast majority of the paint we purchase is in fives so that brings with it the question of what to do with that bucket when it is empty. One thing is certain, we try to never throw those buckets away. It is worth the time and effort to clean them out. Especially when you consider how long that bucket is going to be sitting in a landfill. We typically go through hundreds in a month so we give them away to schools, daycare centers, etc.
A five gallon bucket has so many uses from storage to gardening, etc. No point in going into all the uses for them. There are actually some “books” out there on what you can do with them. Some of them have good ideas and some rather silly ones. The point is that if you had latex paint in that bucket it is very easy to clean out and you should do so.
The biggest trick to making the job of cleaning out that bucket easy is to put the lid on it when empty. Wet paint is much easier to remove and clean. If the bucket has dried paint in it we will usually line them up and fill them with water to soften the paint and then into the sink it goes. We pour the water from the dirty bucket into the next one to be cleaned so we don’t waste more water then necessary.
A little hot water and a plastic scrubby makes for an easy clean.