Kerbside Collection (wheelie bins)


​​​​​Wheelie Bin Notice 2019-2020

Council provides a kerbside collection service to residential properties in most urban areas and to some commercial premises and rural households along service routes. This is one of Council's most popular services, consistently scoring over 90% in resident satisfaction surveys.
Each property has two 240 litre wheelie bins, a yellow-lidded bin for recyclables and a red-lidded bin for residual waste. The service alternates between collection of recyclables one week followed by general rubbish the next.
Recycling was introduced to the service in 2012 in response to community demand, to meet our environmental responsibilities and to minimise the costs of waste disposal for ratepayers. By reducing the amount of waste going to landfill, we reduce the amount we have to pay in waste levies and emissions charges, while saving space in our district's landfill.

The service is funded by rates on the properties that Council is prepared to provide the service to.  For the 2019/20 rating year, the cost for kerbside collection for each household is $133.50.​​

What can and can't go in my wheelie bin

What to put in your recycling wheelie bin (yellow lid):

YES - they can go in​NO - they can't go in
Clean rigid plastic containersGlass​
​Paper and cardboard​Plastic bags
​Clean aluminium/steel cans and tins​Food or garden/green waste

 What to put in your rubbish wheelie bin (green/red lid):

​YES - they can go in​No - they can't go in
​General (non-recyclable) waste, for example:​Hot or un-bagged​​ ashes
​Glass​Paint and chemicals
​Food waste​Sharp objects,  demolition waste
​Cold, bagged ashes​Explosives, flammables, gas bottles
​Nappies​Car batteries
​Plastic bags and plastic cling film​Liquids, fats, oils
​Green/garden waste​Bricks, timbers, metals
​Polystyrene and meat trays​Hazardous waste, medical waste

See our Brochures page for a downloadable guide to sorting your waste.


  • By separating and recycling what we can, we reduce the amount of waste going to landfill and therefore reduce the amount we pay in waste levies and emissions charges. Recycling also contributes to meeting our environmental responsibilities.
  • Glass is excluded from kerbside recycling collection because of the significant costs involved in collecting and sorting this material. You can drop your glass for free at the Mt Cooee Landfill and the Clinton, Lawrence, Milton, Owaka and Tapanui transfer stations.
  • Soft plastics such as plastic bags, chip packets, and gladwrap can't be recycled through the kerbside collection because of the process at the sorting plant in Dunedin. The first part of the sorting process is done by machine and plastic bags and film are so light that the machinery recognises it as paper, meaning that the paper gets contaminated with plastic. Because of this only rigid plastic containers, numbered 1 -7 should be put in your yellow-lidded bin.
  • The rules around what can and can't go in each bin are to protect the health and safety of staff and to ensure a cost-effective and efficient service is provided to ratepayers. The success of the service relies on everyone putting the right items in the right bins. Contamination is taken seriously, with a 'three strikes' system meaning that you get two warnings before your service is suspended for three months if it is found to be contaminated a third time.
  • Our contractor Delta takes recyclables to Dunedin for sorting. From there it is sent to places through New Zealand and overseas for processing and turning into new products. The waste from your rubbish bin is disposed of at Mt Cooee.

Wheelie bin collection information

Having trouble remembering which bin to put out each week? Download our Waste App or print our collection calendar.

 2020 Kerbside Collection Calendar​​ (PDF, 99.4KB)

Your bin needs to be out by 7am on the day of collection (you have the same collection day each week). Rural households that have opted into the service will be collected once a week when the truck passes your property.

​MondayTuesday​​Wednesday ​Thursday​Friday
​Balclutha (part), Kaka Point, Owaka​Balclutha (part), Benhar, Inch Clutha, Stirling​Clinton, Heriot, Tapanui, Waipahi​Kaitangata, Milton (part), Waihola​Lawrence, Milton (part), Waitahuna

There are no collections on Christmas Day, New Year's Day or the morning of Anzac Day (25 April). In general, bins usually collected on these days are collected the following day or Anzac Day afternoon. Council advertises any changes to the collection schedule.

If bad weather closes roads, your bin will be collected on the next available day. Notification will be issued to confirm what day this is.

Joining the wheelie bin service:  Visit our Forms & Guides page for a Wheelie Bin Service application form. If you're on the collection route, you should have your new bins within a week. If you're not on the collection route, we may still be able to provide you with bins, as long as you are prepared to transport them to a collection point yourself. We will be in touch if this is the case.

Stopping the wheelie bin service: For public health reasons, residential properties in defined urban areas cannot opt out of the service. You have the choice not to use them, but you will still be charged for them through your rates. If you have voluntarily joined the service you can stop at anytime by calling 0800 801 350.

Swapping your bins: You cannot have extra bins or swap one for another. Only one set of bins is provided to each property. Extra waste can be disposed of at Mt Cooee or in one of Council's 10 waste transfer stations. Because the bins are rated for as a set, they come in pairs, one yellow and one green/red lidded bin.  

Wheelie bin problems

Too much waste to fit in your bin: If you're finding that your green/red-lidded bin is filling up quicker than it is emptied there are some simple things you can do to solve this:

  • Make sure that all your recyclables are going in your yellow-lidded recycling bin.
  • Reduce the amount of garden and food waste going in the bin by composting, worm farming and/or using Bokashi buckets. More information on reducing food waste can be found here.
  • Reduce the amount of waste you create;
    • say no to un-necessary packaging and
    • avoid buying products you know will only have a short life, such as disposable and one-use items.
    • Think reduce and re-use before recycle or dispose.
  • Drop off your glass bottles and jars for free at the Mt Cooee landfill and the Clinton, Lawrence, Milton, Owaka and Tapanui transfer stations.
  • If you still have too much waste for your bin remember that you can dispose of excess waste at one of Council's ten transfer stations or the Mt Cooee landfill. As from 1 July 2012 a 50% discount is applied to garden waste disposed at Mt Cooee meaning the cheapest option if you have excess waste is to is take your garden waste to the landfill and use your green/red-lidded bin for other waste.
  • If you have more recyclables than can fit in your yellow-lidded bin you can recycle these for free at Mt Cooee and the Clinton, Lawrence, Milton, Owaka and Tapanui transfer stations.

My bin was only half-emptied: A small number of people have found that their bins have only been half emptied on their collection day. This seems to be happening when rubbish is compacted too tightly in the bin and gets stuck. To ensure that your bin is fully emptied in the future don't compact the rubbish in the bin. Remember, the bin must not weigh more than 30kg, if you need to compact your waste your bin probably weighs more than this.

Help, I have a smelly wheelie bin:  Some people may find that their green/red-lidded wheelie bin is a bit smellier now that it's only emptied once a fortnight. However, there are some easy ways to reduce the risk of this happening:

  • Reduce the amount of garden and food waste going in the bin - consider home composting, using a bokashi bucket or visit here to learn how to reduce your food waste.
  • If you must put food waste in your bin place it in a plastic bag and tie firmly before putting in the bin.
  • Store the bin in a cool, shaded place.
  • Keep the lid closed at all times.
  • Yellow-lidded bins should not get smelly as they should only contain clean, non-organic material.

My bin has gone missing: Contact Council on 0800 801 350 or email

Page reviewed: 23 Jan 2020 10:55am