Garbage, recycling and compost
Contact your property manager with questions about the garbage, recycling, or compost service or for help disposing of large or hazardous items.
Please use the information below to make sure your garbage, recycling, and food and yard waste are properly sorted at your building.
When non-compostable or non-recyclable items, such as plastic bags, are placed in the food/yard waste or recycling container, the entire container must be collected as garbage and taken to the landfill. Proper waste sorting reduces our contribution to the landfill and helps reduce our carbon footprint.
- Use Seattle Public Utilities’ Where Does It go? search tool to make sure you’re putting waste in the right place.
- Check out tips on managing your compost.
- Download and print our guide to properly dispose of compost, recycling, and garbage in different languages.
For items other than regular household waste, see below.
Bulky items include beds, box springs, mattresses, furniture, dressers, cabinets, tables, chairs, sofas and other large items. Before bringing items outside, contact your property manager to arrange for these items to be collected. If collection is not pre-arranged, this is considered illegal dumping and you may be fined.
Electronic devices labeled “E-Waste” including TVs, computers, and cell phones cannot be thrown away in your garbage. Learn more about what items are considered E-Waste here.
- Schedule an electronic waste pickup with your property manager. (All electronics must be stored indoors and kept dry prior to collection.)
- Visit King County's Take it Back network to find a free drop off location near you.
- Find a Fix-It Fair or a repair shop to repair and reuse appliances and electronics instead of throwing them away!
It is illegal to dispose of hypodermic needles, lancets, and syringes in the garbage. Ask your health care provider if you can return used sharps to their clinic, or look up where to dispose of sharps here.
Motor oil or cooking oil may be sealed in one-gallon jugs and placed next to the recycling bin or dumpster on collection day. No more than two jugs of oil can be recycled per household at a time and all jugs must be labeled with your address.
All undecorated Christmas trees will be picked up on food & yard waste collection days at no charge from December 26 through January 31. Place the Christmas tree in the same location that food & yard waste carts are set out for collection. Trees must be trimmed to six feet or shorter, and branches to less than four feet. Any objects such as stands, lights, ornaments and bows must be removed prior to collection.
Adorned and plastic trees will be charged as extra garbage. Trees collected after January 31 will be charged as extra yard waste.
If you have more garbage than will fit into containers, contact your property manager for instructions. It is illegal to dump waste on SHA or public property and you may be charged for overweight or overflowing bins.
Special items containing hazardous chemicals must be handled with care and require Special Collection. These items include compact fluorescent lightbulbs (CFLs) and fluorescent light tubes, propane canisters, household batteries, and small electronics. To schedule a pickup, contact your property manager or reach SHA Solid Waste at firstname.lastname@example.org or 206.716.1310.
Light bulb details:
- Up to two 1-gallon bags per collection for a single family residence
- Up to two 1-gallon bags per recycle cart or dumpster for a multifamily residence
- Place unbroken bulbs in a sealed clear bag in a small box
- Place next to your garbage cart on collection day after receiving confirmation that pick-up has been scheduled
- CFLs and Household Batteries can be placed out on the same collection day (in separate bags) for a single charge of $5.00
- Residents will be charged by property management at the following bill cycle
Special Items Box details:
- $20 per pickup and residents will be charged by property management at the following bill cycle
- Up to 2’x2’x2’ box
- Up to four small propane canisters, plus other items like a 1-gallon bag of household batteries or CFL bulbs, and several small electronics.
- Contents of box may not weigh more than 60lbs.
- Place next to your garbage cart on collection day after receiving after confirmation that pick-up has been scheduled