Curbside garbage collection takes place every week, usually on the same day every week, except for holiday exceptions. Use the ReCollect tool to find your collection date and schedule reminders.

What time to place garbage at the curb
Place garbage at the curb after 4 pm on the day previous to collection, or before 7 am on the day of collection. It is important to make sure garbage is at the curb on time, as collection schedules can vary.

 Garbage item limit

Waste collection staff will pick up two non-tagged garbage items. A third item of garbage will be collected if it has a $2 garbage item tag is attached. Only one tagged garbage item is allowed per collection day.

An item is a separate bag or garbage can.

Thunder Bay Solid Waste & Recycling adopted a two-item limit in 2017, in keeping with recommendations of the Solid Waste Management Strategy, and best practices in Ontario.

 Garbage item tags

Garbage item tags are sold in groups of five for $10.

Garbage item tags can be purchased over the phone during the hours of 8:30 am - 4:30 pm, by calling 625-2266. Credit card payment only. Tags will be mailed out to residents.

Tags can also be purchased in person at the Landfill (5405 Mapleward Road) site or at the following Thunder Bay Public Library locations:

  • Brodie Community Hub (216 S. Brodie Street)
  • County Fair Community Hub (inside County Fair Plaza)
  • Mary J. L. Black Community Hub (901 S. Edward Street)
  • Waverley  Community Hub (285 Red River Road)

The garbage item tag should be wrapped around the neck of the garbage bag, or around the neck of the top item in the garbage can. Make sure the tag and its serial number are easily visible to waste collection staff. Learn more: How to use a garbage item tag.

 "One Free Bag" days
On the first collection date after New Year's Day, Victoria Day and Labour Day, residents can put out a third item of garbage with no tag.
 How to put garbage out
Garbage should be in securely closed garbage bags, or in cans containing bags of garbage. Use durable plastic/metal garbage cans with handles and secure lids (not tied to can), or 1.5mm thick black or green garbage bags, securely closed. Cardboard boxes may not be used for waste. Make sure to wrap broken glass or sharp objects for safety. Please wrap, double-bag and seal animal waste. Place garbage at ground level at the end of your driveway.
 Garbage item size and weight

The maximum weight per item is 18kg/40 lbs. An item is a separate bag or garbage can.

A garbage can may not exceed a maximum volume of 135 litres, maximum height of 81cm (32 inches) without the lid, and a maximum combined weight of can and contents of 18kg (40 lbs).

A garbage can may contain several bags. Do not put out liquid waste, medical sharps (needles and lancets) or construction waste.

 Medical exception to garbage item limit
Certain Thunder Bay households may need to set out more than the weekly garbage item limit due to medical circumstances. Under these circumstances, you may apply to increase the limit of waste to a maximum of three items per collection day. Approved applicants may be provided up to a maximum of 52 garbage tags per year, enough for an extra item of garbage each week. To be eligible for the exemption, complete and return the medical exception application.

Reduce waste with the six Rs!

  • Rethink: Think about waste before you buy. Avoid ‘disposable’ products.
  • Refuse: Say no to plastic bags in stores – bring your own instead.
  • Reduce: Take reusable containers and bags instead of disposable ones.
  • Reuse: Charitable organizations and thrift shops can take reusable items you no longer need.
  • Repair: Be handy! Fix items instead of replacing them.
  • Recycle: Recycle everything you can.

For more information on garbage collection, call Infrastructure and Operations Dispatch at 625-2195.

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