Review of the Lifetime Compost Tumbler

Have you seen this tumbler? It’s $98 bucks at Costco!  But hold off a bit before you lay down a hundred smackers on this seemingly great deal.


Our first batch of compost came out pretty good. It took 2.5 months to get this:

Review Lifetime Compost Tumbler Cheap Composter

18 days after start of batch:

If you have the patience and tools (or a handy friend that can put this together for you) give it a shot. More tips below.


It seems most of the reviewers online at Amazon and other sites have not produced compost yet in the Lifetime Compost Tumbler. The majority of comments online revolve around the low price instead of actual performance.
So when you see 5 stars, keep this point in mind. In fact, it looks like people are so proud that they paid such a low price for a composter, it is overshadowing the pain they went through putting it together!
  1. PRICE: Amazon has it listed at around $175 but Costco was selling it for $98. (as of Spring 2011)
  2. SIZE: It’s huge! The bigger, the better when it comes to composters. If you are healthy eaters you’ll produce a lot of scraps. Visit our page that lists all the things you can compost for ideas.  See the video of our Composting Fair for a look at what we mean by “Green” and “Brown” materials.
  3. EASE TO TURN: It’s fairly easy to turn but we have not filled it to the max and tried turning it. It can lock into place with the built-in pin.
  4. PERFORMANCE: We used compost starter granules in the mix and believe this helped with our first successful batch. It took a couple of months but it worked well.
  1. ASSEMBLY: You will need a drill, combination wrench, socket with a ratchet and #2 Phillips screwdriver. Toward the end of assembly you may need help from another person. It will take you more than an hour, maybe two, or more if you are not mechanically inclined.
  2. METAL PARTS: Many exposed metal parts could mean rust and corrosion down the road.

Would we recommend this composter to a friend? Yes, if they were handy or had help to assemble, and understood that down the road, metal parts may start to degrade. For the price, it IS worth a try.

You may also be interested in vermicomposting – see our Video and Tips on Composting witth Worms and Solving Common Problems.

Take a look at an inspiring video we recently created about the Composting Fair we put on at our daughter’s elementary school with awesome music from Gogo Bonkers.