Accounts and Borrowing

Access Your Account

Use the Library Catalog Account Login page to manage your library card account. After login, you'll be able to view checked out items, renew items, update contact information, write reviews, manage RSS feeds, and pay fines.

Accounts & Borrowing Materials

Borrowing Materials:
Checkout Periods | Checkout LimitsRenewals

Library Cards: 
How to Get a Library CardOnline RegistrationTeacher CardsLost Cards

Fines for Late Return of Materials: 
Fines for Late Return of Materials | Online Fines Payment

Hold Materials:
Place a hold on a Sunnyvale Library itemPlace a hold on a non-Sunnyvale Library itemFreeze holds

Checkout Periods

1 week: Feature DVDs/Blu-ray; Bestseller Express materials
3 weeks: Everything else that can be checked out

Checkout Limits

Limit of 20: Feature DVDs/Blu-ray
No limit: Everything else that circulates
A limit of 99 items can be checked out any given time.

Renewals

Borrowers may renew most materials up to three times, unless the item has been reserved by another user. Feature movies, adult magazines, music CDs, board books, Sams Photofacts and Bestseller Express materials are not renewable. You can renew items online by logging into your account. You may also call the automated renewal line at (408) 730-7310.

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How to Get a Library Card

To borrow materials from the Sunnyvale Public Library, you need a Sunnyvale Public Library card, available to anyone whose permanent residence is in the State of California. Here is how to get your free library card.

If you are 13 or older, just come in to the library and bring identification that shows your name and current street address. Some acceptable forms of identification are:

  • A current California driver's license
  • A current identification card showing your name and street address
  • A bill for utilities or other services printed with your name and street address
  • A rental contract
  • A check printed with your name and current address
  • A letter or magazine with a printed label that has been sent through the mail and postmarked.

If you are 12 or under, your parent or guardian may get a library card for you by showing any of the above identifications for themselves.

If you have no proof of address, we can mail a postcard to you at your residence. When it arrives, bring it to the library as proof of address.

Register Online for a New Library Card

If you qualify for a new library card according to the requirements listed above, you may register online now for a library card and pick it up at the library. Follow all instructions and fill out the online form carefully as information submitted will be verified against your identification and proof of address. Do not use online registration if you have ever had a Sunnyvale Library card, even if it is expired. Contact the Circulation division at (408) 730-7300 for renewal information.

Teacher Cards

Teachers may get cards for their classes of students under 13 years old by picking up forms at the Children's desk in the library, sending these forms home with the students, checking the forms when they are returned for verification of address, and bringing the forms to the library at least a week before the cards are to be picked up.

Lost Cards

If you lose your Sunnyvale Public Library card, please call the Circulation division at (408) 730-7300. Replacement library cards cost $2. Please notify us as soon as you're sure your card is lost so that no one else who finds it can use it.

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Fines for Late Return of Materials

Materials must be returned or renewed before midnight on the due date to avoid an overdue fine. Please access your account to view due dates of your materials.

30 cents per day ($10 maximum):
Audiobooks
Books
CDs
DVDs, Blu-ray
Pamphlets
Magazines
Sam's Photofacts

$1 per day ($115 maximum):
Link+ Materials

Online Fines Payment

You can now securely pay your fines online with a credit card. Login into your account, view the fines/fees, and select "Pay Online." View FAQs about paying online. 

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Place a Hold on a Sunnyvale Library Item

If the item you want is checked out to another user, you may place a hold on it:

  • by coming in to the Library - Librarians will be glad to assist you in placing a hold.
  • by calling the Information Desk - Have your Sunnyvale Public Library card ready, and librarians will be glad to assist you in placing your hold.
  • by locating the item in the Library's Catalog, then clicking on the 'Place Hold' or 'Request' button on the item page.

Feature movies, magazines, music CDs and board books may not be placed on hold. When you place a hold, you will be notified that it is available to be picked up at the Library for up to a week. You may choose to be notified by e-mail or telephone. You may update your own account to indicate which method you prefer and to update your contact information, or call the Circulation division at (408) 730-7300. You may check your account online to see a list of items for which you've placed holds. Holds may be cancelled if you wish.

Place a Hold on a Non-Sunnyvale Library Item

If the item you want is not in our collection or is missing or unavailable, you can try to obtain materials through the LINK+ service, which allows patrons to obtain materials from dozens of libraries across California, or by Interlibrary Loan (ILL).

The easiest way to access the LINK+ catalog is through our Sunnyvale Library catalog. Run your search normally through the online catalog. If the catalog does not find a match for your item, click on the LINK+ on the right side of the screen, and your original search will automatically run in the LINK+ system. If you do find the item you want in our catalog but it is unavailable, you can also click on the blue LINK+ button on the right side of the screen. You will be taken directly to the matching item in the LINK+ system.

Once you find the correct item in the LINK+ catalog, verify that the item is available for loan by clicking on the link that says "X number of LINK+ libraries own this item." You will see the status of all copies in all our partner libraries. Once you have verified that there are copies available for loan, click on the link that says "REQUEST THIS ITEM" and follow the on-screen instructions.

Once you have successfully placed the request, you will receive pick-up notification in the same form as your regular library notices. See the above section for information on choosing or changing your notification preferences.

LINK+ requests typically take 3-4 business days to fulfill, although it can take longer especially during holiday periods. Contact the Circulation division to check the status of your request if it has been over a week.

There is NO CHARGE to make a LINK+ request, but the loan periods and fines are different. The item will be loaned for 3 weeks and can be renewed for an additional 2 weeks, if there are no requests at the owning library. Fines are $1.00 per day overdue and $115.00 for lost items.

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Freeze Holds

Are you going on vacation?
Don't want to lose your place on the hold list?
Freeze your hold!

Freezing a hold allows you to maintain your place in the hold list while you are away. Patrons behind you in line will jump ahead until you unfreeze your hold, at which point you will move ahead normally. If you become first on the list, we will not fulfill your hold until you unfreeze, and then you will get the next available copy. You cannot freeze an item that is already awaiting pickup.

Follow these simple instructions to freeze holds:

  • Log in to your account.
  • Click on your list of holds. You will see a "Freeze" column on the far right side with a check box for each item you have on hold.
  • Click the check box for each item you wish to "freeze".
  • To apply the freeze, click the "Update List" button at the top of the list. Your frozen holds should change color and display a row of icicles.
  • IMPORTANT! When you are ready to receive holds again, you must unfreeze. To unfreeze, follow the same instructions as freezing, but this time, click in the check box to remove the check mark. When you click "Update List" you will see the color return to normal.

After you unfreeze a hold, check to see if copies of the item became available while you were away. If this is the case, call us and a Reference Librarian can immediately hold the item for you.

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City of Sunnyvale

Normal City Hours of Operation are
8 a.m. until 5 p.m.

(408) 730-7500

  • Sunnyvale City Hall
  • 456 W. Olive Ave.
  • Sunnyvale, CA 94086
  • TDD (408) 730-7501
  • Map and Directions 
  • City of Sunnyvale Logo
 

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