Ville de Gatineau
Garbage (gray bin)
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Garbage (gray bin)
Garbage (gray bin)

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Gray bins and labelled overflow bags

Gatineau provided a gray bin on wheels for household garbage to every residential unit with curbside collection. If you have not received yours, be sure to call 311 as soon as possible. An information kit is included with five labelled overflow garbage bags with each new gray bin to help with the transition.

Those bins belong to the municipality, and each one contains a chip connecting it to the address where it was delivered. If yours is lost, damaged or stolen, call 311 or make a request.

Gray bin lid locks are available at all five service centres or in libraries.

Labelled overflow bags

If you have too much garbage to fit into your gray bin, you can use labelled overflow bags for the excess garbage. A maximum of five 80-litre bags will be allowed per collection, in addition to the gray bin. The maximum allowable weight per bag is 15kg.

Buying bags

Where How much (pack of 5)
Service centres $2.50
Ecocentres $2.50
Online for home mailing $2.50 + mailing

Labelled overflow bags are not meant to be placed in gray bins. They are meant to hold surplus garbage, and are to be placed next to the gray bin. Those are the only bags that will be taken on garbage collection day.

Buildings with commercial spaces

Buildings with commercial spaces that have curbside collection will be receiving their gray bins shortly. As of September 15, 2019, those buildings will have to use the gray bins delivered to them as well as the labelled overflow bags for their garbage.

For commercial, industrial or institutional properties, click here for information about the municipal garbage collection service.

Bin storage

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 bin in the front yard.

Gray bin repair or replacement

If your gray bin is damaged, broken or stolen, call 311 or make a request. Property owners are responsible for paying the cost of repairing or replacing bins that were broken by the owner, a tenant or an occupant of a dwelling.

Bin maintenance

The owner of or tenant/occupant responsible for the unit to which the gray bin is delivered must mark the address in the space provided for that purpose on the bin provided by Gatineau. Bins must be kept clean and checked for leakage by the owner of the unit.

Requesting bins/containers

If you do not have a gray bin and get curbside collection by Gatineau, make a request. Your bin will be delivered free of charge along with a starter kit.

Gray bins on wheels provided by Gatineau are municipal property.


Household garbage is collected every two weeks for residential and non-residential units that pay the residual materials levy.

Place your gray bin and your labelled overflow garbage bags next to the curb or the sidewalk after 7 p.m. the day before or by 7 a.m. on collection day, on your driveway or on your property, not on the street, to avoid interfering with snow clearing operations. Bins and containers must be removed from the curb no later than 9 p.m. on collection day, as per municipal by-law.

Only the contents of gray bins and labelled overflow bags are collected. A maximum of five bags will be allowed per collection, in addition to the gray bin. No other bag or container will be picked up.

Reporting a missed collection

Collections take place between 7 a.m. and 6 p.m. If your garbage has not been collected, make a request. You can make a request between 6 p.m. on the day of your collection and 6 p.m. the following day. If your collection is on a Friday, you have until noon on Saturday to make your request.

Accepted and not accepted garbage


Can your item still be used? Before placing it in the gray bin, check whether there may be another option, for instance reuse.

  • Clothing and textiles
  • Diapers
  • Dishes (ceramic, melamine, porcelain or glass)
  • Laminated packaging (chip bags, cereal bar packaging, etc.)
  • Personal hygiene products
  • Pet droppings and litter
  • Plastic items not identified by a number
  • Styrofoam* and number 6 plastic containers
  • Toys

* Styrofoam can now be brought to the ecocentre for recovery. Details

Not accepted

  • Bulky items and construction residues
  • Compostables and green residues
  • Electronics
  • Household hazardous waste
  • Recyclables
  • Tires

When in doubt, consult DTRITUS to find out how to dispose of your items.

Frequently asked questions

Limit on household garbage

  • Why all these changes, and why limit the volume of garbage to 120 litres per collection?
    In order to comply with the new provincial government requirements.

    Every year, 17,000 tonnes of compostables, 2,600 tonnes of wood, 1,800 tonnes of construction residues and 11,200 tonnes of recyclables end up as landfill. That adds up to 28,100 tonnes of materials that could be composted, recycled or valorized, and thereby kept out of landfill. In order to comply with the provincial government requirements, Gatineau aims to reduce household garbage by 45%. Limiting the volume of garbage to 120 litres per unit is one way of achieving that.

  • Is it possible to get an additional brown or blue bin?
    An additional blue bin can be provided in the case of large families, multi-unit buildings and other special circumstances. Make a request or call 311. Surplus recyclables can also be placed in 64-litre (green or blue) recycling bins, transparent plastic bags, cardboard boxes or trash cans marked with an R (for "recycling"). Alternatively, recyclables can be dropped off at one of the ecocentres.

    If the brown bin is too small for all of your green residues, place them in paper bags or trash cans marked with a V (for "vert"). If the surplus is mainly excess food, you can order a second brown bin by making a request or calling 311. An inspector will come by and you may receive a second brown bin free of charge. Alternatively, surplus table scraps or yard waste can be dropped off at one of the ecocentres.

Gray bin delivery

  • I have not received my gray bin or my gray bin was stolen or broken. What should I do?
    Make a request or call 311.
  • The gray bin I received did not contain an information kit (pamphlet and white bags with the Gatineau logo). Can I get a kit?
    There are no more information kits for the gray bins dropped off during the mass distribution in the fall of 2018 and winter of 2019. In the case of recently delivered gray bins, you have 14 days after the delivery to make a request or call 311.
  • Why did I receive white bags with my gray bin?
    The white bags with the Gatineau logo are for surplus household garbage. Since September 15, 2019, households generating more garbage than will fit into the gray bin must use those bags or buy additional labelled overflow garbage bags for the surplus. A maximum of five labelled overflow garbage bags will be allowed per unit per collection, in addition to the gray bin.

    Five white bags are provided free to residents to help with the transition to cutting back the volume of garbage.
  • Why are we using 120-litre bins instead of 240 or 360-litre sizes?
    Bins come in four standard sizes: 80, 120, 240 and 360 litres. In 2013, each unit was found to generate an average of 252 litres of garbage per collection. The 360-litre format would not have provided any incentive to reduce the amount of garbage generated, while the 240-litre format would not have been conducive to reaching the 45% reduction target.
  • Will multi-unit residential buildings with curbside collection receive one bin per unit or one bin per building?
    The owners of multi-unit residential buildings using bins on wheels have the option of using a large container for the household garbage of all residents or individual bins for each unit. For example, a six-unit building could get six 120-litre gray bins or two 360-litre gray bins on wheels for curbside collection. Either way, the maximum is 120 litres per unit. Owners who decide to opt for another format must make a request by calling 311.
  • Can I get a lid lock for my gray bin?
    Gatineau provides its residents with free lid locks for 120-litre gray bins and for 80 and 120-litre brown bins. These can be picked up at any municipal service centre or library.

    Those locks canot be used on larger (240 and 360-litre format) bins. A different mechanism is available to rural residents, as required, and can be obtained by calling 311.

Labelled overflow garbage bags

  • What do the labelled overflow garbage bags look like?
    Labelled overflow garbage bags have the Gatineau logo. They are plastic and are of 80-litre volume size. They measure approximately 61 cm by 86 cm (24 inches by 34 inches), and can hold up to 15 kg of household garbage.
  • Am I supposed to use the labelled overflow garbage bags in my gray bin?
    No. Labelled overflow garbage bags with the Gatineau logo are only for surplus household garbage placed next to the gray bin. Any garbage bag can be used in the gray bin.

Special circumstances and vulnerable groups

  • Will there be accommodations for special cases?
    An in-depth analysis was conducted to assess certain special cases that may have difficulty making do with the gray bins' volume limitations and to better understand the repercussions of the incentive system on them. For the purpose of that analysis, the Service de l'environnement also consulted a number of groups and conducted two waste characterization studies over the past year.

    It should be noted that every unit receiving the waste management service is subject to the same$126.45 annual tax and is, therefore, entitled to the same service. Moreover, the by-law on waste management was adopted in accordance with the waste reduction objectives imposed on municipalities in Quebec. Given that no special accommodations can be made for the time being due to applicability considerations, the Municipal Council has set the price of labelled overflow bags at $0.50 each as a way to accommodate all residents.

Old garbage cans

  • What can I do with my old garbage cans?
    Residents can reuse their old garbage cans by clearly labelling them with a V for green (“vert”) residues or an R for surplus recyclables. Alternatively, they can be marked as "À jeter" and set out during special construction residue collections. Residents can also drop off their old garbage cans at no charge at one of the two ecocentres for recycling. If they do this, they should empty and rinse them out.

Rogue garbage

  • What can I do if neighbours leave their garbage in front of my place?
    By-law 839-2018 prohibits leaving trash in a container that belongs to someone else or on someone else's property. Minimum fines of $300 (natural person) and $600 (legal person) are set for a first offence. However, proof (photo, video) is required to identify the offender and the infraction.

    Residents should call 311 or make a request to report an infraction.

By-law concerning packaging

  • What can Gatineau do about overpackaging? Is it considering banning plastic bags?
    For the time being, Gatineau is focusing on optimizing the collection of compostables and recyclables, as well as on oversized items and construction residues. However, it intends to assess the feasibility of regulating certain non-recyclables, such as polystyrene (Styrofoam) and plastic bags. Gatineau is working with several organizations to find solutions for certain materials that are not currently recycled (e.g. polystyrene (Styrofoam)).

    We encourage residents to remain mindful of the environment (reusable cups and bags, non-packaged food, etc.), to reduce their consumption and the amount of garbage they generate, and to reuse products as much as possible before discarding them.



About Gatineau

Recognized for its quality of life, Gatineau is a city of 291,000 inhabitants. It is located on the north shore of the Ottawa River, and extends east and west of the Gatineau River.

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