Storage Area, Containers and Collection Frequency

Choosing your storage area

To have recycling service at your apartment, you must have a storage area that is:

  • Hard, flat and level
  • Convenient for tenants and collection vehicles to access
  • At least 4 feet x 8 feet

Choosing your containers

Your collection contractor will advise you on the type and size of containers your property needs and your expected collection frequency. Depending on your property's needs, you may have a combination of recycling carts and dumpsters. Glass is accepted in your combined recycling containers. You can re-label your old glass container for use for combined recycling, or you can call (206) 684-7665 to request removal.

Cart specifications


96 Gallon
28w x 30d x 43h inches

Dumpster specifications


1 cubic yard
78 x 30 x 40 inches


1 ½ cubic yard
78 x 35 x 40 inches


2 cubic yard
78 x 41 x 41 inches

Choosing the number of containers

Recycling materials usually make up about half of the garbage volume. Most units generate about one 32-gallon can of recycling every two weeks. For example, a 14-unit building might require the equivalent of about 14 cans for weekly garbage collection (or 2 cubic yards per week) and 14 for every other week recycling collection (or 2 cubic yards every other week).

Choosing your collection frequency

Most apartment buildings and houses have their recycling collected every other week. Apartment recycling can be collected once a week or once a month depending on the building and hauler.

Adjusting your containers or collection frequency

If your property's recycling often fills up before collection, you can call SPU Solid Waste Customer Service at (206) 684-3000 to increase the size of your container or the frequency of collection.