Vacuum Process


Crews and Equipment

Vacuum leaf collection is managed by the Solid Waste Management Program. Our crews work with private contractors to provide adequate personnel and vehicles for leaf collection operations. You will see these contract crews in your neighborhood operating the vacuum leaf collection equipment.

vacuum leaf collection truck and two employees

The county's vacuum equipment performs three functions: vacuuming, leaf blowing and mulching. As leaves pass through the fan or impeller, they are ground into mulch. When items other than leaves (i.e., rocks, bottles, tree limbs) pass through, the fan or motor can be damaged.

In addition to costly equipment repairs, excess debris can injure our crews and result in scheduling delays. We work with you, our customers, to provide an efficient, economical service schedule. You can help us by making sure there are no additional items mixed in with the leaves. Detailed set-out requirements follow

Set-Out Information

The Leaf Collection Program is for leaves only. Leaves mixed with brush, rocks, tree trimmings, sticks or trash, etc., will be left behind.

  • Place the leaves no further than four feet from the edge of the streetline.
  • Please remove all debris from leaves prior to set-out.
  • Leaves raked out after the last scheduled round of collection will not be picked-up.
  • Do not block streets or pile leaves over storm drains or ditches.
  • Do not block leaf piles with cars or any type of equipment that could limit our accessibility to the pile or create hazardous conditions.
  • Do not park vehicles on piles of leaves -- this is a fire hazard!

Help Us Serve You Better:

  • Please remember to rake your leaves out in advance of the timeframe we are estimated to be in your area.
  • Follow the guidelines referenced above.
  • Keep up with your leaves; it could snow!
  • Call the Trash/Leaf Collection Office if you have additional questions or concerns. Customer Service is available Monday - Friday, 7:30 a.m. - 4 p.m. by calling 703-802-3322, TTY 711.

Leaf Mulch

Once leaves are vacuumed from neighborhood streets, they are taken to Pine Ridge Park on Woodburn Road.  There, they are ground into mulch and distributed to various public sites around the county.  Free leaf mulch is available for pickup while supplies last.  You will need your own tools for loading and transporting the mulch.  For information on mulch availability and locations, call the mulch infoline at 703-324-5995, TTY 711.

Severe Weather Policy

For the safety of our crews and vehicles we have a Severe Weather Policy. In case of severe weather, collection dates may be adjusted. If weather-related delays occur, we assure you that the leaves will be picked up as soon as possible. It is not necessary to make a customer service call. We appreciate your patience.


Contact Fairfax County: Phone, Email or Twitter | Main Address: 12000 Government Center Parkway, Fairfax, VA 22035
Technical Questions: Web Administrator

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