Skip to main content
Mobile Navigation Icon
Twitter YouTube Print E-mail a friend this page Share this page

Trash, Recycling & Compost

Need Assistance?
Billing question?
Residents can contact Utility Billing.
Businesses can contact Waste Management.
Missing or damaged cart?
Contact Waste Management.
Not sure how to recycle something? Contact us at (425) 587-3812 or
Need recycling help at your business or multifamily property? We provide on-site assistance and free resources.
Other issue? See our contact page.

The Solid Waste Division manages Kirkland's curbside trash, recycling and food + yard waste collection service for people who live in single-family homes, apartments and condos, as well as businesses.  Kirkland's contracted hauler Waste Management provides collection service.

Waste less, recycle right & protect our lake!
twitter sm  Twitter | facebook sm  Facebook | email  Monthly Email

What do I do with...?

While extra household recycling is free, some common items cannot be recycled in your household recycling cart. Here's how you can recycle or safely dispose some common items that aren't accepted in your cart or dumpster.

Upcoming 2018 events:
Nov 3StyroFest Styrofoam Recycling
Dec 1StyroFest Styrofoam Recycling

How to Recycle Items That Can't Go In Your Recycling Cart:

Looking for something else? Search King County's "What Do I Do With?" directorylinks to external site or ask us at (425) 587-3812 or

Kirkland Recycling News

Celebrating One Year of Helping Kirkland Businesses Go Green with EnviroStars
18 Kirkland businesses - and more than 150 businesses across Western Washington - have taken action over the last year to reduce their environmental impact and been recognized as EnviroStars green businesses. To become an EnviroStar, businesses must complete actions that reduce their energy and water usage, minimize their waste, prevent pollution, and utilize safer products. Learn more about Kirkland’s EnviroStars.

Learn How You Can Waste Less Food
The average American family throws out about a quarter of the food they buy – worth about $1000 a year! Our email course shares ways that your family can eat more of the food you buy, and waste less. Get tips delivered to your inbox about grocery shopping, food storage, sharing food, and more. Sign uplinks to external site for the 7-email series.

Curbside Collection Program Updates

Keep Your Recyclables Clean, Dry and Empty
clean dry empty

Please make sure that everything you put into your recycling cart or dumpster is clean, dry, and empty:

  1. Clean - scrape out food residue, also rinse if possible
  2. Dry - don't leave cardboard out in the rain, keep cart lid closed
  3. Empty - pour out liquids, scrape out food

Food and liquid contaminate recyclables, making them harder to recycle and reducing their value. When paper and cardboard gets wet, the fibers become lower quality. Recycling with food on or in it may become moldy before it arrives at the processing facility (often overseas). That's why it's so important to fully empty aseptic cartons like milk cartons or soup boxes. China used to be a major destination for selling recyclables, but at the beginning of 2018 they increased their cleanliness standards for imported paper and plastic.

Do Not Bag Recyclables
do not bag recyclables
no bagged recyclables iconoops tagDo not put your recycling inside of plastic bags -- plastic bags are not allowed in the recycling in Kirkland. Instead, place recyclables loose in your cart. Plastic bags used to be allowed, but we learned that they jam equipment at the Recycling Center, causing the center to shut down multiple times a day so that plastic bags can be removed manually. Recyclables in plastic bags are also easy to confuse with bags of trash. 

If your recycling driver notices that there are plastic bags in your recycling, the driver may not pick up your recycling that week and will leave you an "Oops" tag on your cart explaining what the problem was. After removing the plastic bags, you can put the recycling out for pickup the following week. Extra recycling is free in Kirkland. You can always put out extra recyclables in your own can (labeled Recycling) or a cardboard box (labeled Recycling). 

Plastic Bag Reduction Policy in Effect as of March 1, 2016

Kirkland's plastic bag policy took effect on March 1, 2016. The policy restricts disposable plastic bags at checkout and is similar to policies adopted by Seattle, Issaquah, and other cities.

Large paper bags now cost five cents at grocery stores, convenience stores and gas stations, pharmacies, and supercenters. The requirement to charge for paper bags has been permanently suspended for other retailers as of April 18, 2017. Retailers keep all five cents of the bag fee to defray the higher cost of the bags.

Public Works
Mon-Fri, 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.
123 5th Avenue, Kirkland WA 98033
Operations & Maintenance
Mon-Fri, 6:30 a.m.-3:30 p.m.
915 8th St, Kirkland WA 98033

General Inquiries

Engineering: T. 425.587.3800 | F. 425.587.3807
Operations & Maintenance: T. 425.587.3900 | F. 425.587.3902