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Household Garbage

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Residents are to place garbage, recycling, and/or bulky items, at the curb on their collection days no later than 6 a.m. Do not block sidewalks or driveways. One bag of overflow garbage is allowed. It must be placed on top of the green garbage cart.  Remove emptied container from the curb within 24 hours after pick-up.
What is my collection day
For information, call (919) 560-1200.
                                               Garbage truck with automated arm


The City of Durham services the majority of its customers with automated trucks. The truck has a mechanical arm that grabs, empties, and returns the cart to its original position. This makes cart placement essential to collection.
Proper Cart Placement
-  Carts must not be blocked by vehicles or other obstructions.
-  Lids must be closed.
Remember the rule of 3’s
-  Place the cart no more than three feet from the curb.
-  Carts must be placed at least three feet apart.
-  Carts must also be at least three feet from other objects such as mail boxes, fire hydrants, trees, or utility poles.
Example of Improper Cart Placement: Too close. Please allow three feet of clearance on all sides of the cart.
                                             picture of garbage and recycling cart positioned to close together.

Prohibited items
If the following items are placed in green carts, the carts will be not be emptied and they will be tagged, alerting the residents of the reasons they did not receive service that day.
Do not put these items in the carts:
- Targeted recyclables
- Construction materials*
- Loose ashes** (Must be cold and tightly bagged)
- Tires*
- Car parts
- Carpets (Set out as bulky item pickup)
- Paints***
- Pesticides***
- Glass window panes*
- Dead animals (Place at curb and contact Durham One Call)
- Loose pet litter (Feces that is not bagged)
- Yard waste or other organic matter (No leaves, grass, branches, dirt, rocks, etc.)
*Contact the City of Durham Waste Disposal & Recycling Center for proper disposal options.
** Bagged ashes should only be placed in the green garbage cart and not the brown yard waste or blue recycling cart.
***These items can be taken to the City of Durham Household Hazardous Waste Disposal Facility.
 No construction materials
             No Construction Materials
 No tires
                       No  Tires
No paint
 No Paint
Must be taken to Household Hazardous Waste facility
Driver Misses or Late Set Outs
If your cart was not serviced before 5 p.m. on collection day:
- First, verify that you set your cart out on the correct day. Reminder: Holidays normally push collections back one business day.
- If the cart was set out on the proper day, check to see if your cart was tagged by a driver.
- If the cart was set out on the correct day and was not tagged, call (919) 560-1200 to report your missed collection. Reminder: Please call by 5 p.m. on the day of collection.
Reasons household garbage cart could be tagged:
- Any of the prohibited items listed above are found in the green cart.
- Cart is too heavy for the truck to lift.
- Cart contains hazardous materials.
- Cart contains fluorescent light bulbs.
- Cart contains large amounts of liquid.
- Cart is more than five feet from the curb.
- Cart was not set out on time.
- Trash was not disposed of in a City-issued cart.