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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.

As of May 9, 2016, coloured/dyed Styrofoam is garbage and will not be accepted in the blue box. Companies that buy Styrofoam from the City only want to buy white Styrofoam – and that means coloured/dyed Styrofoam can no longer be recycled. Please continue to put white Styrofoam in your blue box.

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.

Blue box

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 or coloured/dyed 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. Place broken glass and other garbage glass items in a cardboard box, label as broken glass and set out beside your garbage. This will not count as a separate garbage item or bag.
  • Alcohol containers can be returned to The Beer Store for deposit refund.

For additional info please review the Blue & Grey Box guide.

Windy-weather tips

Prevent recyclables from becoming blowing litter with the following tips:

  • Place heavier recyclable items on the top of your recycling box (i.e. glass bottles/jars in the Blue Box), and lighter items (i.e. plastic containers in the Blue Box) on the bottom.
  • Place an unattached piece of wood, like a piece of plywood, over top of the box. The collector will simply flip the piece of plywood off the box, and then empty your recycling.
  • On days when you know it will be windy, place your recycling box out for collection by 6 a.m. the morning of collection, and not overnight.

Grey box

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.

Windy-weather tips

Prevent recyclables from becoming blowing litter with the following tips:

  • Place heavier recyclable items on the top of your recycling box (i.e. cardboard in the Grey Box), and lighter items (i.e. plastic bags in the Grey Box) on the bottom.
  • In the Grey Box, place loose papers in untied plastic bags, like shopping bags, or stack paper vertically.
  • Place an unattached piece of wood, like a piece of plywood, over top of the box. The collector will simply flip the piece of plywood off the box, and then empty your recycling.
  • On days when you know it will be windy, place your recycling box out for collection by 6 a.m. the morning of collection, and not overnight.

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 $5.30 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 $3.30.
  • 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 for disposal.
  • Bring small scrap metal items such as pots and pans, metal coat hangers and small appliances, such as toaster ovens, toasters and microwaves.

Household Hazardous Waste

The household hazardous waste facility closes for the season on Saturday, Nov. 26, 2016.

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, 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: adhesives, aerosol containers, antifreeze, batteries (all kinds), compact fluorescent lights and tubes, fire extinguishers, fuels, household cleaners, mercury devices (switches, thermometers and thermostats), oil, paint, propane cylinders, solvents,
  • 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.

Logo for Orange DropOrange 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 for a full list of locations or 'Drop Zones' and what hazardous wastes they accept.

Pharmaceuticals and sharps

As of October 1, 2014, the City of Kingston no longer accepts pharmaceuticals and sharps for disposal at the Household Hazardous Waste facility.

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

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

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.

Electronic waste and tires

Electronic waste and tires can be recycled and diverted from landfill.

  • Electronic Waste: go to 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 to find out where you can drop off tires. Call the collection site ahead to find out about drop-off limits.

Scrap metal

What is scrap metal? Scrap metal can be – small household items such as pot, pans and coat hangers; kitchen appliances such as toasters, and microwave ovens; larger appliances such as washers, dryers, water heaters; and renovation materials such as bathtubs, sinks, and doors

Scrap metal cannot be recycled in the blue box, but can be recycled at these private scrap metal recyclers:

  • ANS Scrap Metal, 1158 McAdoos Lane, 613-544-3038
  • KIMCO Steel, 1327 John Counter Blvd., 613-544-1822
  • Mulrooney Metal Recyclers, 1290 McAdoos Lane, 613-548-8665
  • Progressive Waste Solutions, 1266 McAdoos Lane, 613-548-4428
  • Westerndorp Disposal Service, 1709 Westbrook Rd, 613-384-8555

The Kingston Area Recycling Centre (KARC) also accepts these items:

  • Pots and pans
  • Metal coat hangers
  • Small appliances(ie toaster ovens, toasters, microwaves)
  • Other small to medium metal items

KARC cannot accept: garbage, large appliances, air conditioners or Freon-containing appliances.

About freon:

Certain household appliances (e.g. refrigerators, freezers and dehumidifiers) contain Freon, which must be removed from the appliance. Many scrap-metal recyclers will accept Freon-containing items, but charge for its removal. Call ahead to ensure a recycler accepts Freon-containing devices and to inquire about charges.