Multi-family garbage service applies to those residences with four or more residential units. Property owners or managers may contact the City's Utilities Customer Service at (408) 730-7400 to establish service, make changes to current service and order garbage bin or carts and recycling carts. City Council determines garbage service rates each July 1. Specialty Solid Waste & Recycling (Specialty) is the City's franchised hauler and the only authorized hauler for residential garbage and recyclables collection.
AB 341 Mandated Recycling
As of July 1, 2012, multi-family community property owners and managers of five or more units, must provide recycling carts for tenants to recycle. The City offers tools and support in helping owners and managers establish a successful recycling program. Contact the Recycling Program at (408) 730-7278 for more information or to arrange a waste audit at your property. Remember, the more tenants recycle, the less they throw away, the lower your garbage costs.
Right-sizing service is choosing the appropriate level of service for tenants' disposal needs and minimize overfilled bins or carts that contribute to litter which can make its way into storm drains, creeks and open waterways and eventually into the Bay. Owners or managers may choose from the following service options.
City-provided carts or bins:
- 35-, 65-, or 95-gallon garbage carts
- 1 to 30 cubic yard garbage bins (5 or 7 cubic yard bins unavailable)
Customer-provided garbage compactors:
1 to 30 cubic yard compactors can be serviced on a weekly or on-call basis. Contact Specialty at (408) 565-9900, in advance of purchasing a compactor, to discuss service charges and container compatibility with collection equipment.
Garbage bins and carts are used for regular garbage only. Lids must remain in a closed position, other than when in use, to reduce odors, litter and vector problems, and to prevent water accumulation inside containers. Specialty may not service overfilled or overloaded bins.
Overfilled bins or carts can spill contents outside of the truck during collection causing litter around waste areas or on roadways. Litter can enter storm drains, which flow directly to the Bay, and harm wildlife as it contaminates waterways. Drivers may tag overfilled bins or carts and the property owner or manager will be responsible for removing excess materials so that lids will close before service is rendered. Specialty may assess return trip fees for overfilled bins. If overfilled bins are a frequent problem, consider ordering a larger garbage bin or increasing weekly service.
Overloaded bins may contain inappropriate materials such as concrete, sod, construction or demolition materials making bins unusually heavy. Drivers may tag overloaded bins or carts. Property owners or managers will be responsible for removing inappropriate materials before service may be performed and be assessed a return trip fee for overloaded bins.
Other reasons for non-service to garbage bins are if they:
Learn more about additional service and maintenance options available for containers.
Debris Box Service
For remodeling, construction, landscaping or general clean-up projects, owners or managers may wish to order a debris box. The City recommends placing debris boxes on the property rather than on the street where possible. Boxes placed on the street have a 30-day limit for removal. Residential debris box service:
- Is available in 8-, 15-, 20- and 30-cubic yard boxes; and
- Includes a monthly rental fee.
Contact City Utilities Customer Service at (408) 730-7400 to determine which debris box size is appropriate to your needs and the cost of service. Learn more about the City's debris box service.
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