140l black bin

Weekly food waste collections begin from 1 February. Collection days will also change for most homes in Reading. Check your new collection day here.

Some properties will have a delay of 3 weeks between red recycling bin collections. If you are affected by this delay, please place any excess recycling in clear bags or cardboard boxes at the side of your red bin on collection day.

As part of our programme of activity to increase Reading’s recycling rate to 50%, we’re swapping 240 litre grey bins for 140 litre bins. Analysis shows that around 18% of the waste put in grey non-recycling bins could have been put in the red recycling bins or taken to bottle or textile banks. Research across the country shows that higher recycling rates are achieved where the residual (grey bin) waste capacity is reduced, because it encourages people to maximise the items they sort for recycling.

We successfully introduced weekly kerbside food waste collections and 140 litre grey bins to 3,000 early adopter properties in October 2020. We will roll out the new service to the rest of the borough from 1 February 2021 and will provide you with all the information and equipment you need to take part.

If you have any problems or queries about the new service which aren’t covered by the questions below, please contact us.

Frequently asked questions

Why are you changing the size of the bins?

Swapping 240 litre bins for 140 litre bins is part of an initiative to help us increase the recycling rate in Reading.

Analysis of household waste bins in Reading shows that on average 18% of the waste in grey bins could have been put in the red recycling bins or taken to bottle or textile banks.

As well as changing the size of grey bins, we successfully introduced weekly household food waste collections from 5 October 2020 to 3,000 early adopter properties in October 2020.

When will my bin be changed?

We will be swapping the current 240 litre bin for smaller 140 litre bins over the next eight weeks on your scheduled collection day. Please continue to use your grey bin as normal until it has been removed, even if you have received your new 140l black bin.

Can I keep my grey bin?

It is not possible to keep your grey 240 litre bin as it will be swapped for a smaller 140 litre bin.

If you have an additional grey bin, you can keep it but you will not be able to use it to have your household waste collected. If you would like to keep it for other purposes, such as storage, please do not present your additional bin for collection and remove it from the front of your property so that it isn’t taken away.

If you have a large or additional grey bin and still require extra waste capacity, you can request extra waste  capacity.

Will my bin collection day change?

From 1 February 2021 most homes will have a new collection day. The changes to collection days have been made so that your food waste can be collected on the same day as your recycling and household waste. You’ll receive more details nearer the time, including all the information and equipment you need to take part. This will include information about your collection day and a bin calendar.

Garden waste collection days will not change.

What if the rubbish bin you provide is not big enough?

Our aim is to help all residents use the recycling services available. Your red recycling bin will remain 240 litres. You can order extra red recycling bins for free if you need them and you will have your food waste bin and kitchen caddy.

The new 140 litre black non-recycling bins will hold around three black sacks of rubbish. This should be enough for most households who recycle all that they can through the weekly food waste collections and fortnightly recycling collections. You’ll receive more details nearer the time.

We can provide extra waste capacity in some circumstances and will consider each case individually. You can apply for extra waste capacity so that we can assess your needs. If approved, we will provide you with RBC branded white sacks which you can put out with your grey bin on collection day.

What do I do if I have lots of nappies and absorbent hygiene products?

If you have children in nappies please flush the contents down the toilet before putting it in your bin. You can find more information about reusable nappies here.
If you, or a member of your household are producing hygiene waste, you can apply for extra waste capacity and we will assess your need for a larger bin, or in exceptional circumstances, a clinical waste collection.

Can I have more recycling bins to help me manage my waste?

Yes, we are encouraging residents to recycle as much as they can. We will collect as many red bins from a property as presented, as long as they only contain items we can collect kerbside. You can order an additional recycling bin.

What about residents in flats with limited storage?

Our aim is to help all residents use the recycling services available. We will trial the best way to provide the services for flats. In some types of residence there may be some adjustments needed and we will make any necessary changes on a phased basis. You’ll receive more details nearer the time.

What will happen to the old bins?

The old 240l grey bins will be taken away and either re-used or recycled into new bins.

Will the there be any changes to the red recycling bin or green garden waste services?

There are no changes to the red recycling bin service – however we will provide you with better information about what you can and can’t recycle. You can also use the re3cyclopedia app.

There are no changes to the garden waste service.

What do I need to do?

Right now you should continue to use your current services and bins. The new services started in 5 October 2020 for 3,000 early adopter properties. We will roll out the new service to the rest of the borough from 1 February 2021. You will receive all the information and equipment you need to take part nearer the time. If you want to start now you can join in the campaign and help us recycle more! Check what can and can’t be recycled.

What can I recycle?

Here’s an  easy to use list of what you can and can’t put into each bin and for even more information you can also use the re3cyclopedia lookup or app.