Collection Tips & FAQs

We’ve compiled the below list of frequently asked questions and answers.
Click on questions for answers. If you don’t see your question, please contact us.

Click here for FAQs, services and COVID-19.

How do I start/stop my service?

Property owners/managers need to contact us to start or stop service. A form is required in order to start/stop service. 

I moved from a single-family home to a multi-family complex. What is different about garbage and recycling pick up?

The biggest difference you’ll notice is that you won’t have to push your cart to the curb! You’ll be sharing centrally-located bins with other residents. Click here for our multi-family service guide and downloadable copy.

What belongs in each of my collection carts/bins?

Proper sorting makes a difference! Garbage goes in the gray, recyclables in the blue, and organics (food/yard waste) in the green. Visit our multi-family service guide page.

Click here f or searchable list of what belongs in each container.

Blue Recyclables Cart and what belongs insideGreen Organics Cart and what belongs insideGrey Garbage Cart and what belongs inside


If a product has the three arrows symbol on it, doesn’t that mean recyclable?

The three arrows symbol is not an automatic indication that an item can be recycled. The recycling symbol is unregulated, meaning that no authority controls who places the symbol on what product, be it recyclable or not.

For example, the plastics industry uses the chasing arrows symbol as an “in house” coding system to identify resin types, not recyclability.

It is important to follow the guidelines issued by the City of Livermore and Livermore Sanitation, not the labeling on the product.Click here for service guides, posters, and a list of what goes where.

The goal of zero waste is for everything that is manufactured to be recyclable. To accomplish this, a reliable end-buyer and use for the material is required. Product recyclability is dependent upon a demand and market for the material – for example, manufacturers buying products/materials back for the remanufacture of goods. The demand and available markets are what determine what can and cannot be accepted in recycling collection programs.

When an industry or manufacturer designs, produces, and sells a product without the recyclable material market in mind, it must use virgin materials to manufacture its products. Natural resources are used up and unrecyclable material (waste) is produced.

What can you do to help? Be mindful of your purchasing habits! Buy products that are made from or use recyclable materials. Do your best to reuse, repair, repurpose, and rethink what you have before you buy something new! For more tips and ideas, click here.

I have questions regarding my last invoice. Is there someone who can help me?

It’s important to us that our customers understand their invoices and correct any mistakes as soon as possible. Contact us with your questions. 

How do I dispose of electronic waste, motor oil/filters, paint, fluorescent bulbs, pesticides, expired medications, and other hazardous items?

Hazardous items cannot go in a Livermore Sanitation cart or bin. Please visit our Household Hazardous & E-Waste Program information page for information on proper disposal.

I have more or larger items than will fit in our collection carts/bins. How can I arrange for an extra or special collection?

Please have your property manager or owner contact us to coordinate additional service.

What can I do about items that have been illegally dumped?

Report it! Use the online form on the “Contact Us” page.

I’m sick of all this junk mail! Is there a way to make it stop?

Visit To cut back on unsolicited catalogues, visit

I’m about to move/just finished moving. Where can I get/ get rid of boxes?

Post reusable boxes on

Click here for our Move In Guide.

Click here for our Move Out Guide.

I cleaned out my closet and found lots of good stuff I no longer wear. What should I do with it?

Passing your things back into circulation helps other people AND keeps your landfill from overflowing. You can contact:
your favorite local consignment shop

I’m moving and have an entire pantry full of food I can’t use. I’d hate for it to go to waste- any suggestions?

Good for you. There’s too much need to throw away food. Visit the Alameda County Food Bank to pass on your bounty.

I’m looking for basic waste reduction and recycling information. Any good sites to visit?

Sure! Try these:

I’m interested in teaching my child more about the environment. Any suggestions?

Review our Resource List for teachers and our Suggested Reading List

I’d like to reward companies that go out of their way to do the right thing. Is there a way to find local green businesses?

Yes! Visit the California Green Business Network.

I’m apartment hunting and I’d like to know which residential complexes offer recycling & organic services. Do you have a list?

Yes we do! Please refer to our Green List of multi-family residential complexes.

Still need help?

Contact us for assistance or visit our Publications & Resources.