Household garbage
Major changes have been made to the collection of residual materials since July 15, 2018. Consult the Updates section.

Household garbage is collected every two weeks for every residential unit that pays the residual materials management tax.

Information about the collection

Place your household garbage in garbage cans or bags. The bags must be strong and well sealed, and the cans must be waterproof, metal or plastic, with handles and lids. Alternatively, you can use bins on wheels of up to 360 litres, other than blue or brown.

There is a limit of six household garbage items per collection. An item is equivalent to approximately 120 litres and a maximum weight of 25 kilograms. Each residual materials container is considered an item, except for 240-litre bins on wheels, which are equivalent to two items, and 360-litre bins on wheels, which are equivalent to three items.

Bin storage and collection day

Bins may be stored outdoors in the side yard or backyard at least one metre from the property line. If you live in a townhouse with no side yard, you may store your bins in the front yard.

On collection day, place garbage cans or bags next to the other bins at the curb or on the sidewalk, with the wheels facing the house. In the winter, bins left at the curb or on the sidewalk may slow snow clearing operations.

Put your bins out no earlier than 7 p.m. the day before or no later than 7 a.m. on collection day. Collection is between 7 a.m. and 6 p.m. If your bins have not been emptied, submit a request.

Distribution of gray bins

Every unit receiving curbside collection will receive a 120-litre gray bin in the fall of 2018. The bins will be free and will be dropped off in front of each residence.

What size of gray bin will be provided to residential buildings using bins?
Owners of multi-unit residential buildings and condominiums that use bins will receive a letter this summer asking them to indicate their preference in terms of the size of gray bin they will receive.

What will happen to the existing bins and containers?
Residents may use their existing bin or trash cans as an additional container for green residues by clearly identifying them with a V (for “vert”) or for surplus recyclables by clearly identifying them with an R (for “recycle”). Gatineau will introduce a container and trash can recovery program after the new gray bins have been delivered. Details will be released in the fall of 2018.

When will the 120-litre limit come into effect?
The 120-litre limit per residential unit will come into effect on July 15, 2019. Residents will have a few months between the time they receive their bin and that date to adapt to the new container format and to figure out ways to reduce their household garbage before the 120-litre limit comes into effect.

Composting and recycling are mandatory, and are very helpful in reducing the volume of household garbage.

What if a household generates more than 120 litres of household garbage after July 15, 2019?
If a household generates more than 120 litres of household garbage, even while composting and recycling, it will be able to get tagged overflow garbage bags, which will be collected in several parts of the city. The cost of those bags will be announced in the spring of 2019, as will the locations where they can be purchased.

Will there be special measures for specific cases?
A public consultation will be organized in the coming year on specific cases where the 120-litre volume may not be sufficient, in order to:

  • provide an overview of specific cases (day cares, large families, seniors' residences, rooming houses, low income families, etc.); and
  • ease the burden for those specific cases.

The fee model will be adopted by the Municipal Council in the spring of 2019 for implementation effective July 15, 2019.

Why would a large family be entitled to the same volume as a single person or a couple without children?
Every residential unit entitled to household garbage collection currently pays $129.50 for that service. The current system discriminates against households that produce little garbage but still pay the same as those that generate large amounts. Gatineau would like to correct this situation, and have households generating more than 120 litres pay for the excess by requiring them to get tagged overflow garbage bags.

Not accepted

  • Compostables
  • Dead animals (other than those small enough to fit into a hermetically sealed plastic bag)
  • Asphalt shingles
  • Automobile carcasses
  • Bulky items, including construction residues, bulky waste and metal bulky waste
  • Liquids, used oils
  • Electronics
  • Hazardous materials, including household hazardous waste (HHW)
  • Recyclables
  • Tires
  • Green residues
  • Soil, sod, rubble and plaster, cement, masonry or asphalt pieces
  • Tree trunks, branches or any wood with a diameter larger than 7.5 cm or longer than 1.5 m

Useful tips

  • If you need to dispose of diapers, in order to reduce the odour, flush solids from the diapers down the toilet. Then refold and seal the diapers using the tabs, and place them in the same plastic bags you use for your garbage. You can also use disposable diaper compactors to reduce their volume and odours. Or you can use reusable diapers.
  • In order to reduce the odour of animal droppings and litter, wrap them in a plastic bag before placing them in your garbage bin. Some litters (depending on the composition or brand) are more or less scented or absorb odours better.
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