Trash & Recycling Collection Guidelines for Sanitary Districts

Your Basic Service  |  Curbside Recycling  |  Disposal Don'ts  |  Special Collections  |  Special Services  |  Numbers to Know  |  Disposal Facilities

Your Basic Service:

Your base service fee of $345.00 covers once-a-week collection of trash and recyclables and up to 5 special collections from July 1, 2014 to June 30, 2015. This fee is included as a separate line item on your real estate tax bill. Additional fees may apply for special services such as MegaBulk.

County Code requires household trash and recyclables to be collected weekly. To ensure collection, please have it at the curb or street line by 6 a.m. on your collection day. Household waste in closed plastic bags may not be set out earlier than 6 p.m. the night before collection.

Carts: All customers are provided with a gray rolling cart for trash and a blue rolling cart for recycling. Carts provided by the county should not be loaded to more than 100 lbs. Personal trash containers and plastic bags must not weigh more than 50 lbs. each when full. Fairfax County is not responsible for damage to or loss of personal trash containers.

Accessibility: Customers living along private roadways must ensure a hard, packed surface free of potholes and obstructions with a minimum width of 12 feet and cleared of overhead vegetation up to 13 feet above the roadway.  Do not place your trash containers in drainage ditches. Customers living on pipestems must set materials out at the public right-of-way to ensure pickup.

Set Out Instructions: Carts should be set out approximately 3 feet apart and at least 6 feet away from vehicles and other personal property. Carts must be placed at the curb with the handles facing your home. Carts must not be overfilled (the lid must close tightly on its own). Additional materials should be in plastic bags and placed next to the containers (recyclables should be in clear bags). Cardboard should be flattened.

Holiday Schedule: Regular trash, recycling, brush and bulk collection services are provided on all holidays except Christmas Day. The Customer Service Center is closed in observance of all county holidays.

Severe Weather/Emergency: In the interest of safety, trash and recycling collection may be suspended in severe weather or in emergency situations. For emergency and severe weather status updates, call 703-802-3322, TTY 711. Subscribe to receive email updates at Solid Waste email lists are under “Public Works & Utilitites.”

Curbside Recycling:

mixed paper and cardboard
Recycle any clean paper that tears -- including old photographs.
Cardboards should be flattened.

plastic bottles, jugs, pails, buckets, tubs, lids and caps
After rinsing containers, please replace the cap and recycle.

metal cans, foil and glass bottles/jugs
The recycling facility where materials are delivered is now accepting foil baking trays and wrap, and empty aerosol cans (hair spray, air freshener, deoderant, etc.)

Yard waste (grass, leaves and brush)
Between March 1 and December 24, yard waste must be placed at the curb in a separate container, clear plastic or paper bags or tied in bundles (no longer than 4 feet) all weighing no more than 50 pounds. Wood must not exceed 6 inches in diameter. More than 4 bundles of tied yard waste require a scheduled special collection

 Christmas trees will be collected during the first two weeks of January for recycling. Lights, decorations and stands must be removed to ensure collection.

Disposal Don’ts:

In order to maintain our equipment, protect our employees from health and safety risks, and dispose of waste in accordance with environmental best practices and regulations, there are several items which cannot be disposed of through our normal curbside collection service. Unless otherwise indicated, these materials can be disposed of at either the I-66 Transfer Station or the I-95 Landfill Complex.

Animal Waste & Remains: Large amounts of animal waste will not be collected. Small amounts are acceptable if double bagged.

Very small animal remains (mice, birds, etc.) are acceptable if double bagged. Larger animals may be buried. To report a dead animal found along the roadway, please call VDOT at 1-800-F0R-ROAD (367-7623), TTY 711.


Construction Debris: Drywall and similar materials, shingles, ceiling tiles, floor tiles, wall tiles, asbestos, dirt and sod, sand, stones, rocks, bricks, concrete, asphalt, railroad ties.

Oversized Brush: Stumps, root balls, whole trees and/or brush longer than 6 feet in length and greater than 6 inches in diameter will not be collected as a part of normal collection service.

Tires: No more than four automobile tires per collection day. Rims must be removed. Larger quantities and repeat set-outs will not be collected. No truck tires.

Explosives: Live ammunition or weapons will not be collected (contact your Police Department for disposal instructions).

Propane, Oxygen, Helium and any other tank containing flammable or explosive gas will not be collected.

Gas-powered lawn equipment containing gas or oil will not be collected. These items can be collected as a special collection (see Special Collections, below) once the gas and oil are removed.

Large Glass Items and Sharps: Glass windows, sliding doors, glass sheets and mirrors will not be collected at the curb. Broken glass and sharp objects will be collected if they are carefully packaged and sealed in a rigid container - such as a liquid detergent bottle (needles must go in rigid bottles) or cardboard box. Clearly label the container “SHARPS.”

Household Hazardous Waste: Household hazardous waste materials will not be collected. These materials may be taken to the household hazardous waste disposal site at the I-95 Landfill Complex or the I-66 Transfer Station.

Commercial Waste: Waste from commercial businesses will not be collected.

Special Collections:

Special collections are for collecting household items that are too large to collect with a standard garbage truck. Your base service includes 5 special collections per fiscal year (July 1 - June 30). You must schedule special collections for all oversized items and piles. . To schedule a special collection, contact the Customer Service Center at 703-802-3322, TTY 711 (7:30 a.m. - 4 p.m., M-F) or schedule your collection online.

To qualify for a special collection, piles are limited to 12 cubic yards of material (a pile about 5 feet x 6 feet x 10 feet). Piles of heavy/dense materials are limited to 6 cubic yards. Materials must be no bigger than 6 feet long and 6 inches in diameter. Larger piles and multiple piles will be charged an additional fee through the MegaBulk program.

We can collect large logs or branches, root balls and stumps resulting from the removal of whole trees for an additional fee with the MegaBulk Program.

NEW Curbside E-cycling: No more storing your old televisions, computers and peripheral devices in your garage or waiting on special recycling events. Fairfax County will now provide e-cycling collection at the curb. Each collection must be scheduled and will count as one of your five special collections granted for the year. All it takes is two easy steps:

  1. Schedule a special collection online or by calling the Customer Service Center at 703-802-3322, TTY 711.
  2. Set your old TVs, computers or peripheral devices at the curb apart from other waste materials.

The recycler to whom we deliver old electronic devices provides data destruction as part of the recycling process.  However, Fairfax County cannot assure the security of data stored on electronic devices placed at the curb prior to collection for recycling.

Set Out Instructions:

  • Separate metal items, appliances, furniture, electronic waste, and large piles of brush. Do not mix lumber with brush.
  • Do not put normal trash with special collection materials.
  • Special collection items must be placed within 6 feet of the curb/street line by 6 a.m. on the scheduled collection day.
  • Items must be placed in the open, away from parked vehicles, low hanging tree limbs or wires (minimum of 20 feet clearance on all sides and overhead is required).
  • Do not obstruct manhole covers, fire hydrants, storm drains, ditches, sidewalks or streets.
  • Materials set out for collection for more than one week may not exceed the Zoning Ordinance outdoor storage size limitation of 100 square feet.
  • All smaller items included for collection must be properly bagged.

Special Services:

The following services are offered by Fairfax County, but are not included in your base service fee.

Leaf Collection: Fairfax County provides seasonal vacuum leaf collection for approximately half of our collection customers who pay an additional fee to receive this service.

Leaf collection typically takes place between Oct. 31 and Jan. 31. To be collected, leaves must be raked to the curb - clear of storm drains and kept away from cars or other obstacles. Collection times will be advertised on roadside signs, on our website and via email to customers. Subscribe to receive email alerts and notifications (Solid Waste email lists are included under “Public Works & Utilities.”)

MegaBulk: The MegaBulk Program is designed to help customers remove whole trees and very large loads of waste from their properties - including construction and demolition waste. We will provide you with a written MegaBulk cost estimate, valid for 10 days, based upon items at the curb. Set out must follow the special collections set-out instructions. The minimum charge for a MegaBulk collection is $60, but prices will vary depending on the volume of material.

You are responsible for removing the material within 10 days either with the MegaBulk Program, another contractor or by self-hauling the waste. Failure to do so may result in Fairfax County removing the materials at your risk and expense. The minimum cost for county removal of abandoned materials is $250 plus actual labor, equipment and disposal costs.

Household Hazardous Waste Disposal:  This program is a free service for county residents. Both the I-66 Transfer Station and the I-95 Landfill Complex have permanent sites for the disposal of household hazardous waste (see material list below).

   • Aerosol Sprays
   • Asbestos Products
   • Automotive Fluids
   • Car Batteries
   • Coal Tar Products
   • Creosote Products
   • Driveway Sealers
   • Floor Care Products
   • Fluorescent Lamps
   • Fungicides
   • Glue (solvent base)
   • Herbicides
   • Inks & Dyes
   • Insecticides
   • Mercury Products
   • Moth Balls
   • Paint (oil base)
   • Paint Thinner
   • Pesticides
   • Poisons
   • Pool Chemicals
   • Rust Removers
   • Stains
   • Varnish
   • Weed Killers
   • Wood Preservers

For facility locations and hours, call 703-324-5068, TTY 711, or go to the Recycling Website.

Numbers to Know:

Customer Service Information Line: 703-802-3322, TTY 711
Staffed 7:30 a.m. - 4 p.m., M-F 
Closed on county holidays

Subscribe to receive email newsletters/notifications.
(Solid Waste email lists are included under “Public Works & Utilities”)

Recycling InfoLine: 703-324-5052

Household Hazardous Waste InfoLine: 703-324-5068



Disposal Facilities:

I-66 Transfer Station
4618 West Ox Road
Fairfax, Virginia
703-631-1179, TTY 711

I-95 Landfill Complex
9850 Furnace Road
Lorton, Virginia
703-690-1703, TTY 711


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

ADA Accessibility | Website Accessibility
Awards | FOIA | Mobile | Using this Site | Web Disclaimer & Privacy Policy | Get Adobe Reader
Official site of the County of Fairfax, Virginia, © Copyright 2013

Website Feedback Website Feedback    Globe with various flags representing Web site language translations   Language Translations

Return to Graphic Version