Garbage and Recycling at Your Home

COVID-19 Updates:

Waste Collection

  • At this time, garbage, recycling and organics collection continue as scheduled. Large appliance collection continues, as well.
  • The garbage limit is 3 items per garbage collection day. Items over the 3 item limit must have a garbage tag attached.

Waste Bins and Garbage Tags

Visit the Garbage Tags and Bins page for details.

Used PPE Belongs in the Garbage

Used masks, gloves, wipes and tissues belong in a tied garbage bag, not the blue box. If these items are found in the blue box, your recycling will not be collected and crews will place an educational sticker on your blue box as a reminder. Please remove these items and place your blue box out for collection the following week or you can drop off your recyclables at one of the Region’s depots.

York Region Public Waste Depots

  • York Region’s Public Waste Depots remain open during regular service hours. Please visit york.ca/wastedepots for information on what waste items are being accepted at their respective sites. Please also note that to protect customers and staff, the depots are no longer accepting cash until further notice. You can pay by debit, MasterCard or Visa. 

Waste Collection Safety Guidelines

To help keep our residents and contracted waste collection staff safe, please:

  • Continue to carefully bag and tie all garbage and green bin materials in plastic bags.
  • Dispose of masks, gloves, wipes and tissues in a tied garbage bag, not the blue box. If these items are found in the blue box, your recycling will not be collected.
  • Dispose of paper towels and tissues in the green bin, not the blue box. If these items are found in the blue box, your recycling will not be collected.
  • Do not flush any wipes down the toilet. Sewer blockages can occur.
  • Do not litter. Dispose of masks, gloves, wipes and other hygiene products in the garbage.
  • If someone in your home is ill, place all items they use in the garbage, not the blue box or green bin. 
  • Wash your hands before and after handling waste and waste containers. Regularly clean your containers using soap and water.
  • Support our collection staff by keeping the required 2 metre physical distancing.

Garbage and Recycling at Your Home

Houses in Richmond Hill are provided with curbside collection for recycling (blue box), organics (green bin), garbage and yard waste. 

Waste Management Calendar 

My Waste app changes

The My Waste app has been discontinued and replaced with the Recycle Coach app. To get the same great information and services regarding Richmond Hill’s waste collection programs and schedule, please download the Recycle Coach app from the App Store or get it on Google Play.

Collection schedule 
  • Recycling (blue box) - weekly collection
  • Organics (green bin) - weekly collection
  • Garbage - bi-weekly collection
  • Yard waste - bi-weekly on garbage collection day (April 13 to October 8); weekly on your collection day (October 12 to December 3)
  • Appliances - collected monthly by appointment

When is my waste collected?

To find your collection week and day, use one of the following tools:

Holiday collection

If your normal collection day occurs on a statutory holiday (with the exception of Boxing Day), your collection will be moved by one day during that week (for example from Thursday to Friday). Any regular collection days following this statutory holiday during that week will also be moved forward by one day. Please see the waste management calendar for specific dates or contact Access Richmond Hill for more information at 905-771-8800.

What goes where? 

If you aren't sure what goes where, you can use one of the tools below to find out:

Garbage

Garbage is collected bi-weekly and includes furniture.

Collection guidelines

  • Garbage must be placed at the curb no later than 7 a.m. on the day of collection and no earlier than 6 p.m. on the night preceding collection.
  • If garbage has not been collected it must be removed from the curb by 9 p.m on collection day.
  • Richmond Hill's current waste limit is three bags or items per collection.
  • A garbage item means a garbage bag, bundle, garbage can (max. 125L or 33G) or a piece of furniture (max. 150lbs and/or 1.83m in length).
  • The maximum weight is 18 kgs (40lbs) per item. This does not apply to furniture.
  • Tie loose items into bundles no longer than 1.2m (4ft)
  • If you have more than three items you must use garbage tags for extra items to be collected. Garbage tags are sold in sets of five for $10.90 (includes HST). Visit the Garbage Tags and Bins page to buy garbage tags online or find out where you can get them in person.
  • For safety reasons, toilets set out at the curb must be separated into two pieces (tank and bowl) unless it is a one piece toilet. If you are unable to separate a two piece toilet, please dispose of it at a waste depot
  • Glass and mirrors must be securely wrapped in cardboard and marked as 'glass for disposal'.
  • When complaints are received from the community about others leaving uncollected waste at the curb for long periods of time, City staff will investigate the property and provide the resident with an educational notice (in the form of a door hanger) noting that the waste must be removed from the curb immediately. If the resident does not comply within 48 hours, they could be subject to a fine of up to $100 for being in contravention of the City’s Waste By-law
Recycling (blue box)

Recycling is collected weekly. 

Collection guidelines

  • Blue box recycling must be placed at the curb no later than 7 a.m. on the day of collection and no earlier than 6 p.m. on the night preceding collection.
  • If recycling has not been collected it must be removed from the curb by 9 p.m. on collection day.
  • All soiled recyclable materials (such as tubs containing food) must be rinsed and can be mixed in the same blue box, you do not need to sort your recyclable material.
  • Flatten cardboard and tie in bundles that should be no larger than 60 cm x 60 cm x 30 cm.
  • Each blue box and bundle should not exceed 18kg.
  • There is no limit to the number of blue boxes or bundles you set out.
  • Recyclables set out at the curb in plastic bags will not be collected (shredded paper must be set out with organics).
  • When complaints are received from the community about others leaving uncollected waste at the curb for long periods of time, City staff will investigate the property and provide the resident with an educational notice (in the form of a door hanger) noting that the waste must be removed from the curb immediately. If the resident does not comply within 48 hours, they could be subject to a fine of up to $100 for being in contravention of the City’s Waste By-law

For more information about the recycling system, including recycling contamination and how to avoid it, please visit York Region's website.

Where can I get a blue box? 

Visit the Garbage Tags and Bins page to find out where you can buy a new blue box or pay to exchange a broken/damaged blue box.

Organics (green bin)

Organic waste is collected weekly.  

Collection guidelines:

  • Organics must be placed at the curb no later than 7 a.m. on the day of collection and no earlier than 6 p.m. on the night preceding collection. To prevent issues with pests, set out your organics the morning of collection.
  • If organics have not been collected they must be removed from the curb by 9 p.m. on collection day.
  • Your organics must be in a green bin for collection.
  • It is recommended to use certified compostable bags in your green bin (look for the compostable logo) or paper bags as these are better options for the environment.
  • Each green bin cannot exceed 18kg or 12gal.
  • There is no limit to the number of green bins you can set out.
  • Shredded paper is collected with organics. Please place in a transparent bag beside your green bin. 

Where can I get green bins and compostable bags?

Visit the Garbage Tags and Bins page to find out where you can buy a new green bin or kitchen container, as well as pay to exchange a broken/damaged green bin.

Compostable bags can generally be purchased wherever garbage bags are sold. 

How do I keep pests away from my organic waste?

  • Between collection days store your green bin inside (for example in your garage or shed).
  • Set your green bin out in the morning (by 7 a.m.) instead of the night before if possible.
  • Always securely latch your green bin.
  • Make sure all contents are inside the bin and the lid is closed.
  • Hang your green bin from a hook in the garage or on the porch.
  • If you store your green bin outside, you can use a short bungee cord to secure the lid. Please remove cords before placing your green bin at the curb.
Yard waste collection 

Yard waste includes leaves, pine cones, fallen fruit, trees, shrub trimmings, pumpkins, clean straw and dried corn stalks. Soil, sod and grass clippings are NOT ACCEPTED. 

Yard waste is no longer collected on Mondays. Yard waste is now collected on your regular waste collection day.

2021 yard waste collection schedule

  • April 13 to October 8 - Bi-weekly on garbage collection day* 
  • October 12 to December 3 - Weekly on your regular waste collection day

*If you live in the “yellow zone” collection begins the week of April 13. If you live in the “blue zone” it begins the week of April 20.

Collection guidelines

  • Yard waste must be placed at the curb after 6 p.m. on the night before your collection day and before 7 a.m. on the day of collection.
  • Yard waste must be set out in a large Kraft paper bag (available at most retailers), cardboard box or in a reusable, rigid, open top container, such as a garbage can or bushel basket (max. 125L or 33G), which must be clearly labelled with a yellow yard waste sticker. Yard waste stickers are available for free at Access Richmond Hill (225 East Beaver Creek Road, Ground Floor) and at the Operations Center (1200 Elgin Mills Road East). 
  • Brush must be tied and bundled with twine (branches/bush may not be longer than 1.2m/4ft in length and no branches may be larger than 10 cm in diameter).
  • Each container or bundle must not exceed 18 kg/40lbs.
  • If yard waste has not been collected it must be removed from the curb on the collection day.

What goes where?

If you aren't sure what goes where, you can use one of the tools below to find out:

Drop off your yard waste

Richmond Hill residents can drop off their yard waste at the Bloomington Yard Waste Depot located at 1351 Bloomington Road, Richmond Hill. Visit york.ca/wastedepots for hours and fees*.

*Please note that new fees apply as of July 2, 2020.

Where to place your waste in winter 

On waste collection days, place your garbage, blue boxes, green bins and/or yard waste away from the curb on the right side of your driveway (if you're facing the house). This will allow our plows to clear the pile of snow from the bottom of your driveway without disturbing the waste.

Image of waste bins away from curb on right side of driveway

Appliance collection
Large appliances are collected free of charge by appointment only. Visit the large appliance collection page for details and to schedule your collection.

Household battery recycling

Used household batteries are accepted in the collection boxes at Richmond Hill’s main Municipal Offices (225 East Beaver Creek Road), the Operations Centre (1200 Elgin Mills Road East) and all community centres and libraries. They can also be taken to York Region Waste Depots. For safety reasons, please tape the ends of primary lithium, button cell, rechargeable and 6 and 9 volt batteries.

Textile waste reduction

In Canada, 500,000 kilograms of clothing and other textiles are put in the garbage each year! The best way to limit the environmental impacts of clothing and other textiles is to make sustainable choices.

Learn how on our Textile Waste Reduction page.

Reducing single-use items

Single-use items are products and packaging designed to be used only once before they are discarded. Examples include disposable cutlery, straws, stir sticks, shopping bags, water bottles, Styrofoam and take-out containers.

Single-use items can negatively affect our natural environment. These items can often be avoided or replaced with more sustainable, reusable alternatives.

For more information and a list of reusable alternatives, visit the Reducing Single-Use Items page.

Double-up Days for garbage collection

To make seasonal cleaning easier, we're offering Double-up Days! You can put out up to 6 garbage items during Double-Up Days, as opposed to the regular 3 items, without purchasing garbage tags. A garbage item means a bag, bundle, garbage can or piece of furniture. Please set out your items on your regular garbage collection day.

Use the colour zone map on page 1 of the Waste Management Calendar to determine which week applies to you.

Spring Double-Up Days

Yellow zone: March 30 - April 3

Blue zone: April 6-9

Fall Double-Up Days

Blue zone: September 21-24

Yellow zone: September 28-October 1 

Christmas tree collection

Christmas trees will be collected on your regular waste collection day during the weeks of January 4 and 11, 2021. 

Collection guidelines:

  • Maximum height 2.1 m (7').
  • Remove all decorations and nails.
  • Trees must not be bagged.
  • Place trees at the curb by 7 a.m.
  • Ensure that trees are not frozen to the ground or on high snow banks. 

Richmond Hill residents can also drop off their Christmas tree at the Bloomington Yard Waste Depot located at 1351 Bloomington Road, Richmond Hill. Fees apply. Visit york.ca/wastedepots for details.

Electronic waste 

Electronic waste (e-waste) is any electronic equipment in your home that no longer works and cannot be repaired. E-waste is not collected through curbside pickup and should not be thrown in the garbage because these items contain hazardous materials and often have recyclable parts.

Find out how and where to dispose of e-waste.

Waste By-law

The Waste By-law regulates and maintains a system for the collection and disposal of household waste in the City of Richmond Hill.