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Recycling

Garbage and recycling collection calendar

Use this tool to confirm your collection day and see what will be collected. You can also:

  • View, download and print the collection calendar
  • Sign up reminders* (email, phone or Twitter)
  • Upload to your personal calendar (iCal, Google Calendar, Microsoft Outlook)
  • Request a calendar be sent to you by mail.

*ReCollect (ReCollect Systems Inc.) collects contact information for the sole purpose of providing reminders and related notifications. Recollect will never share your information with a third party. See the Recollect privacy policy.

Service provided byReCollect

Get a blue box, black box or green bin

  • Get a blue, black or green bin at Canadian Tire stores.
  • The City will supply one blue and one black bin and one green bin per household.
  • Extra recycling bins and green bins can be purchased at Canadian Tire stores in Ottawa.
  • The Green Bin Program is available in apartment and other multi-residential properties. Please contact your property manager for more information.

Damaged or Missing Containers?

If you have a damaged, broken or missing recycling bin or green bin, you can request a replacement by calling 3-1-1.

New Property

Did you recently move and containers are missing from your new property?  Request coupons for replacement bins to be redeemed at any Ottawa Canadian Tire. Please use the following to request coupons:

Do not use other bins for organics collection

Please use the City of Ottawa green bin for organics collection. The bins have been specially designed and tested and are fitted for pick up by an automatic lifter on the collection vehicles.

Approved containers

For more details on approved container sizes, visit the City’s Solid Waste By-law.  

What goes in your blue bin

Important Blue Bin Reminders:

  • All recyclables must be placed loose in an approved City of Ottawa blue bin to help with sorting at the recycling facility.
  • Plastic bags should not be used to package recyclables. They cannot be opened by the automated sorting process at the recycling facility and the plastic bags get caught in the equipment.
  • Clear/blue/biodegradable plastic bags are not accepted. Clean plastic grocery bags should be reused or brought to a Take it Back! partners.
  • Your blue bin should not weigh more than 15 kg when full.
  • Have a specific question about an item? Check the Waste Explorer.

What goes in your blue bin

Blue bin recyclable:

Glass

  • Bottles and jars

Metal

  • Metal cans
  • Soft drink cans
  • Jar lids
  • Aluminum containers (clean or food soiled)
  • Aluminum foil (clean or food soiled)
  • Empty paint cans with lids removed
  • Empty aerosol cans (hairspray, paint, whipping cream)
  • Spiral-wound canisters with metal ends (frozen concentrate cans, potato chip tube)

Plastic

  • Food and household containers numbers 1 to 7
  • Take-out containers, bakery and produce containers (clam shells)
  • Pails (remove metal handle)
  • Planting trays
  • Flower pots
  • Single serve yogurt containers
  • Clear plastic egg cartons
  • Plastic bottles, jars and jugs
  • Tubs and tub lids (yogurt, ice cream, margarine containers)

Cartons

  • Milk and juice cartons
  • Drink boxes
  • Soup boxes

Empty Alcohol Containers

Empty wine, beer and spirit containers greater than 100 ml purchased in Ontario must be returned, for refund at The Beer Store.

Non-recyclable 

Place these items in your regular garbage.

Glass

  • Ceramics such as dishes, cups and pottery
  • Other glass such as drinking glasses, window glass, light bulbs, and mirrors
  • CFL bulbs (compact fluorescent) can be returned to a Take it Back! partner or a Household Hazardous Waste Depot

Metal

  • Metal clothes hangers
  • Scrap metal
  • Chip bags

Plastic

  • Styrofoam containers and packaging
  • All plastic bags
  • Hard plastics such as dishes, cups, toys, make-up jars, laundry baskets
  • Motor oil containers

Find out what happens to your recycling.  

What goes in your black bin

Important black bin reminders

  • Paper and cardboard must be clean.
  • Your black box should not weigh more than 15 kg when full.
  • Have a specific question about an item? Check the Waste Explorer.

What can I put in my black bin?

  • Newspaper and flyers
  • Magazines and catalogues
  • Corrugated cardboard
  • Telephone books
  • Cereal and cracker boxes (remove plastic liners)
  • Shoe and laundry detergent boxes
  • Writing and computer paper, paper pads
  • Hard and soft cover books
  • Paper egg cartons, toilet paper and paper towel rolls
  • Gift wrapping paper and greeting cards
  • Clean paper shopping bags or paper packaging
  • Frozen dinner boxes
  • Clean pizza boxes 

Place these items in your green bin:

  • Waxed paper
  • Food soiled pizza boxes
  • Other soiled paper products
  • Tissues and paper towels (soiled or clean)
  • Coffee cups (wax lined)

Place these items in your garbage:

  • Cereal and cracker box liners, chip and cookie bags and canisters
  • Chocolate bar and candy wrappings
  • Wooden clementine and orange crates
  • Foil wrapping paper, bows, ribbons
  • Paper and cardboard lined with foil
  • Fast food drink cups (plastic)

Find out what happens to your recycling

How recycling works

What happens to our recyclables?

Many everyday items don't belong in the landfill and can instead be made into something new.

Did you know... most car parts, t-shirts, parkas, sleeping bags, home insulation, garden furniture, playground equipment and CDs use material from what you recycle in your blue and black bins.

Ottawa's recyclables are sorted and sold to different companies to reuse or to make into new products:

Recycled materialNew product
Plastic tubs and lidsFlowerpots, plastic lumber, other plastic
Old newspaper and magazinesNew newspapers and magazines
Telephone booksEgg cartons
Aluminum soft drink cansAluminum sheeting for auto and general use
Steel cansSteel construction products
Old glass bottles and jarsNew glass bottles and jars
Plastic 2L soft drink bottlesPolyester yarn for carpet, clothing, packaging
Juice boxesPaper towel and tissues

Recycling creates jobs in the manufacturing and service sectors and boosts the economy.

Recycling protects our natural resources. One tree filters up to 60 lbs of pollutants each year.

Together, we can do better.

Ottawa diverts just under 50% of garbage from the landfill. We're great at recycling cardboard and newspaper, but we could do better on recycling juice cartons and aluminum foil.

Here's how we're doing so far:

Item

Percent Recycled

Cardboard

92%

Newspaper

90%

Aluminum cans

73%

Soup and food, steel and tin cans

70%

Boxboard

69%

Plastic Bottles (#1)

68%

Plastic Bottles (#2)

61%

Computer paper, envelopes and other household paper

57%

Glass

57%

Milk/drink cartons

52%

Yogurt and margarine containers

40%

Juice boxes

35%

Aluminum foil and trays

11%

Report a problem with blue box collection

  • Waste collection contractors operate between 7 am and 6 pm; please wait until after 6 pm before submitting a request for missed collection.
    • If your request concerns a missed collection, all material must remain at the curb to be collected once reported.
  • If the week had a statutory holiday, your regular collection day may occur one day later.
  • Your bin may not have been collected if it contained prohibited items.

Report a problem with blue box collection

Report a problem with black box collection - houses

  • Waste collection contractors operate between 7 am and 6 pm; please wait until after 6 pm before submitting a request for missed collection.
    • If your request concerns a missed collection, all material must remain at the curb to be collected once reported.
  • If the week had a statutory holiday, your regular collection day may occur one day later
  • Your bin may not have been collected if it contained prohibited items

Report a problem with black box collection