Frequently Asked Questions:

General Residential Service Questions

Helpful Links I Important Numbers

Why was I charged for extras?
The driver will charge you for extra if your can is overflowing or if you have anything next to your can. You are charged according to the size of can, which means you can fill it to the top of the container without being charged for extra. If your can is overflowing, you may need to increase your level of service. Bags, boxes, or other items that are too close to the container may be taken as extra. If you do not want it picked up, keep it away from the container to avoid confusion.
What happens if my garbage is missed?
Depending upon the circumstances, weather, construction, etc. our drivers may not always be able to access your account. Should this occur, and our driver is able to pick you up on the next regular scheduled pick up day, we will take the equivalent of your missed service at no additional charge.
Why is my bill so high?
In some areas, we bill two months in advance. If your account was started in the middle of a billing cycle, you may have been billed for three months. Your future bills will only be for two months. Depending upon where you live and the type of service you have you may be billed monthly or bimonthly.
Can I stop my service while I am on vacation?
Most residential service can be placed on vacation hold while some commercial and container accounts cannot as you are paying for the rental of the container. Please contact your local office to determine whether or not your service can be placed on hold.
How do I make changes to my account?
Please call your local office to make any changes. Do not write the change on your bill or give the information to your driver.
When I am required to supply my own can, what are the can requirements?
Cans must have a water tight, close fitting cover and two handles. A mini can should not exceed 20 gallons or weigh more than 35 pounds when full. A standard can should not exceed 32 gallons or weigh more than 65 pounds when full or 12 pounds when empty.
What are the charges for Recycle Program Adjustment and Value of Recyclables on my bill?
The Recycle Program Adjustment is the portion of the garbage rate that is allocated to the recycle program. The Value of Recyclables is the average value of the recycle materials collected from recycle customers, it is refigured annually.
Why am I being charged for recycle when I don’t recycle?
In 1989 the state mandated that all residents would pay for the recycle program. This was passed in the form of the “Waste Not Washington Bill”.
Why can’t I recycle glass in my comingle recycle toter?
Breakage during collection leaves glass shards in the paper that damage processing equipment and pose a danger to sorting crews. This reduces the recyclability of recycled paper and increases processing and disposal costs.
What can I put in my commingle recycle toter?
Newspaper, cardboard, cans, mixed paper, magazines, plastic bottles, and paper milk-style cartons. Please do not put pizza boxes, plastic tubs, bags, jars, juice boxes/pouches, or waxed cardboard into your recycle toter.
Where can I get more information about recycling?
Call your local office, or 1-800-RECYCLE or go online to:
What should I do with recyclables that won’t fit in the cart?
Items left outside the cart will not be collected. Recyclables also can be taken to staffed recycling stations throughout the county. For a list of recycling locations call 1-800-RECYCLE or go online to:
Can I leave a message when the office is closed?
Yes, your local office has voicemail. Most calls are returned the next day.
How can I pay my bill?
Bills can be paid By Phone, in person at any of our offices with cash, check or money order, through the mail with check or money order. In our Tacoma office only we accept Visa and Mastercard.
When will we be able to pay by phone?
You currently can pay by phone service.
Why has my pick up time changed?
Though our drivers try to pick up at the same time each week this is not always possible. For this reason we ask that service be available by 6:00 a.m. to ensure pick up.

General Container Service Questions

How long can I keep the container?
On the smaller containers (1-2yds) we offer temporary on-call service which has a time restrictions of 2-90 days. Other containers can be used for as long as needed.
How long does it take to get a container?
Containers are usually delivered 1-3 working days after the order is taken.
What can I put in a dumpster (1 - 6yd)?
One to two yard containers are for large amounts of household trash. Three to six yard containers can only be used at commercial properties. There can be NO hot ash, petroleum products, insecticides, hazardous waste, car batteries, engine parts, construction debris, roofing materials, concrete, or refrigerator/freezers (other appliances are alright) in the containers.
What is demurrage?
Demurrage is the rent on a drop box.
What is E & R?
E & R stands for empty and return. This is the hauling charge when we empty a drop box then take it back to the customer’s site.
When will I be billed for my drop box?
We only bill drop boxes once a month. Since we bill after the fact we bill at the beginning of the month for service provided in the previous month.
What can I put in a drop box?
Drop boxes are for large amounts of garbage, construction, etc. There can be no hot ashes, petroleum products (or car parts that contain petroleum products), insecticides, corrosive materials (ex. car batteries), liquids or other hazardous wastes. Appliances and tires may have additional charges.


Washington Utilities and Transportation Commission
Pierce County Public Works and Utilities

Recycle Sites

Washington Department of Ecology Kids Page
Natural Resources Defense Council

Important Numbers

Disposal Sites and Services
Recycle Centers
Local Utilities

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Air Quality/Burn Ban 800-422-5623
Chemical Spills 253-591-6047
Credit Bureau-Equifax 800-685-1111
Credit Bureau-Experian 800-682-7654
Credit Bureau-Trans Union 800-916-8800
Hazardous Waste Line-Statewide 800-287-6429
Hazardous Waste Line-Hawks Prairie 360-786-5457
Hazardous Waste Line-Tacoma 253-591-5418
Illegal Dumping 253-798-4636
Olympic Region Clean Air Agency - Dean 360-586-1044
Pierce County Sheriff non-emergency 253-798-4721
Puget Sound Clean Air Agency - Max Scarberry 206-689-4033
Puget Sound Clean Air Agency - Asbestos 206-689-4058

Disposal Sites

Cascade Yard Waste 253-589-6993
Landfill-304th office 253-875-1976
Landfill-Hawks Prairie 360-786-5494
Landfill-Hidden Valley 253-847-7555
Waste Tires 253-591-6047

Disposal Services

Jaco Environmental - appliance removal 800-414-5072
LeMay Mobile Shredder 877-898-0112
Mason County Garbage 360-426-8729
Murrey's Disposal 253-414-0345
Olympia City Disposal 360-753-8340
Parkland Metal Recycling 253-548-8303
University Place Refuse 253-564-3212


Get more from recycle brochure  
Puget Sound Recycling (BUY Metal) 253-536-2260
Recycling Computers - Pierce 253-460-8322
Recycling Computers - Thurston 360-923-0613
Recycling Styrofoam Peanuts 800-828-2214


City of Eatonville 360-832-3361
City of Olympia 360-753-8368
City of Lakewood 253-589-2489
City of Roy 253-843-1113
Town of Steilacoom 253-581-1912
City of Tacoma 253-591-5544
City of Yelm 360-458-3244
Pierce County Health Dept 253-798-6440
Pierce County Sewer 253-798-4050
Pierce County Solid Waste 253-798-4115
Pierce County Utilities 253-798-4020



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