If it can be recycled, it isn't garbage and can be diverted from landfill. Blue and Grey Boxes go out on alternating weeks. The maximum weight for Blue or Grey Boxes and their contents is 20 kgs (44 lbs). Please remove bungie cords or tie-downs when placing Blue or Grey Boxes at the curb for collection. To find out when your scheduled pick up day is, check out the garbage and recycling calendar. Please set out your recycling by 6 a.m. the morning of your collection day.
If you're not sure if an item is recyclable, or where it goes, you can consult the waste lookup tool for help.
For the safety of Collectors, who sort recyclables by hand at curbside, please use City of Kingston Blue and Grey Boxes, or similar-sized recycling boxes. Collection staff are not permitted to collect from recycling boxes taller than 16 inches or from laundry baskets, cardboard boxes, etc.
Select a heading for more information.
All items should be clean and placed loosely in the Blue Box.
- Plastic food and beverage containers, and "blister" packaging (like the kind they use to package tools or children's toys).
- Styrofoam – but not popcorn and Styrofoam pieces must be no larger than 3'x 2'x 8'' "(90 cm x 60 cm x 20 cm).
- Aluminum and steel cans – including paper cans with metal ends. Put can tops into can and pinch shut.
- Glass food and beverage bottles and jars – but NOT broken glass, drinking glasses or light bulbs.
- Alcohol containers can be returned to The Beer Store for deposit refund.
For additional info please review the Blue & Grey Box guide.
The following items go in your Grey box:
- Paper products – including glossy magazines, newspapers, junk mail and telephone books
- Boxboard, like cereal and cracker boxes.
- Milk & juice cartons, juice boxes and paper coffee cups (lids removed and placed in Blue Box)
- Plastic bags – including shopping bags, milk bags, bread bags and any bag that passes the "stretch test." If you can stretch, it goes in the Grey Box, if you can't, it doesn't. Please stuff plastic bags into one bag, so they don't blow away.
Corrugated cardboard goes out on your Grey Box week. Boxes should be flattened and cut down to pieces no larger than 3' x 2' "(90 cm x 60 cm x 20 cm). Pieces may be tied together with string in bundles no larger than 3' x 2' x 8". Pieces may also be placed loosely in a separate recycling box. There is a limit of six-bundles or boxes of cardboard per collection. Please keep cardboard separate from boxboard (cereal and cracker boxes). Cardboard can be distinguished from boxboard by its wavy layer, or corrugation, in the middle of pieces. Do NOT put wax-coated boxes or soiled pizza boxes out with your cardboard- these go in the Green Bin.
For additional info please review the Blue & Grey Box guide.
Live in an apartment?
Look for large blue recycling carts in your building's waste disposal area. In this area you should find signage that shows you how to sort and recycle anything you could put in a Blue or Grey Box.
The multi-residential Green Bin program operates in a similar fashion.
Kingston Area Recycling Center (KARC)
The Kingston Area Recycling Centre (KARC), 196 Lappan's Lane, is open Monday to Friday 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. and Saturdays 8 a.m. to 4 p.m.
Here are six things you can do at KARC:
- Pick up extra Blue and Grey Boxes. Your first Boxes are free. Additional Boxes are $5.15 each. Lost/stolen/broken Boxes are replaced at no charge. You can also pick up Blue and Grey Boxes at City Hall, 216 Ontario St.
- Bring your yard waste and recyclables for disposal.
- Pick up your first Green Bin or exchange a broken one. Kitchen Containers are provided with your Green Bin; broken Kitchen Containers are replaced at a charge of $3.45.
- Bring your Household Hazardous Waste (see HHW section for hours of operation).
- Bring your printer cartridges for disposal.
- Bring your batteries and compact fluorescent light bulbs.
Household Hazardous Waste
Household Hazardous Waste (HHW) does not go in your garbage and must be diverted from landfill. The City operates a HHW facility at 196 Lappan's Lane, open April through November (inclusive) on Thursdays, 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. and Saturdays, 8 a.m. to 4 p.m.
Residents of the City of Kingston and Loyalist Township may drop off hazardous wastes at no charge. Residents of South Frontenac, Central Frontenac, North Frontenac, the Township of Frontenac Islands and the Township of Leeds and the Thousand Islands are required to purchase a one-time use pass from their municipal office and bring their receipt of purchase before dropping off hazardous wastes. All residents must provide proof of residency (i.e. driver's license) when dropping off hazardous waste.
- It accepts: aerosol containers, antifreeze, batteries (all kinds), compact fluorescent lights and tubes, fire extinguishers, fuels, household cleaners, oil, paint, pharmaceuticals, propane cylinders, solvents, syringes and needles (in sealed plastic containers).
- About Needles: If you find a needle in a public place contact the KFL&A Public Health via the Street Health Centre (KCHC) at 613-549-1440, and if unable to speak directly to the receptionist, leave a detailed message about the location of the needle found in the community and a contact number, and someone will pick the needle up during business hours.
- It does not accept: asbestos, incandescent lightbulbs or smoke alarms. To dispose of explosives, flares or ammunition, contact Kingston Police for assistance at 613-549-4660.
Orange Drop your Hazardous Household Waste at retail stores
Under Stewardship Ontario's Orange Drop program, local retailers accept many hazardous waste items for proper disposal. Visit www.makethedrop.ca for a full list of locations or 'Drop Zones' and what hazardous wastes they accept.
Compact fluorescent light bulbs
Compact fluorescent light (CFL) bulbs contain mercury, which makes them a hazardous waste and as such they should not be placed in regular household garbage. Residents can take CFL bulbs to the following locations for safe disposal:
- Kingston Area Recycling Centre, 196 Lappan's Lane
- Canadian Tire Kingston Centre, 59 Bath Rd
- Canadian Tire, 1040 Division St
- Canadian Tire, 2560 Princess St
Compact fluorescent tubes can be brought the Household Hazardous Waste facility located at 196 Lappan's Lane. Please see the top of this section for hours of operation.
Looking to get rid of batteries? Drop them off at:
- City Hall, 216 Ontario St.
- The INVISTA Centre, 1350 Gardiners Rd.
- KARC, 196 Lappan's Lane
- See Call2Recycle
To find more locations that accept batteries for recycling, please visit the Raw Materials Company website and use their site finder search tool.
Pharmaceuticals and sharps
Kingston residents can now return unused or expired medications and sharps, for free, to a pharmacy in Kingston. For a list of collection locations near you visit http://www.healthsteward.ca/returns/ontario
Electronic waste and tires
Electronic waste and tires can be recycled and diverted from landfill.
- Electronic Waste: go to www.recycleyourelectronics.ca to find out where you can drop off electronic waste. Printer cartridges can be dropped off at the Kingston Area Recycling Centre at 196 Lappan's Lane.
- Tires: go to www.greenmytires.ca to find out where you can drop off tires. Call the collection site ahead to find out about drop-off limits.