Report trash, recycling or cart issues to (865) 215-4311 or [email protected]

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The City has 3 WAYS to Report Trash, Recycling or Cart Issues
CALL 311 Call 311 or 865-215-4311
EMAIL 311 Email 311 Office
SUBMIT FORM Submit 311 Online Form

 Waste & Resources Home Page

Garbage FAQs

I just moved in. How do I set up trash services?
Trash services are paid for with residential taxes. Read more here.

Why wasn't my trash/recycling picked up?
Please review these guidelines to ensure pick up. If all of the guidelines were followed but the cart was not emptied, please report within 2 business days of being missed.

What if I have more trash than my trash cart holds?
Learn about your options for overflow trash here.

Can I get a second cart?
No. However, an additional cart can be received through Waste Connections for a fee.

Does my trash need to be bagged?
It is recommended you do so in order to prevent litter that may escape while dumping.

What is my service day?
Service day information can be found here, or by calling 311.

My trash cart is missing or I just moved into a new home and there isn't a trash cart on the property. What should I do?
Please thoroughly check the perimeter of your home (and alley, if applicable) to find your cart. If you can’t locate it, please call the non-emergency police number (865-215-7000) to report it as stolen. Then, call 311 with your Police Report Number to request a trash cart.

How do I set out my cart?

See proper set out rules here.

Which holidays interrupt trash services?
Our holiday notice can be found here.

What can I NOT put in my trash cart?

  1. Construction, demolition, renovation materials (it is accepted here).
  2. Wet paint and HHW material.
  3. Yard waste is allowed but will not be repurposed if it is placed in the trash.
Can I bring my trash cart with me when I move?

Can I mark my garbage cart to identify where it belongs?
Yes, but please only write your address and nothing else. Each trash/recycling cart is the property of the City of Knoxville and is therefore assigned to the address and not the resident. We recommend calling 3-1-1 to confirm your serial number before marking on the cart. 

What do I do if my garbage cart has been damaged or stolen?
Call 311 or 865-215-4311.

What do I do with large items?
We refer to large items as "bulky waste". Bulky waste disposal guidelines can be found here.

Recycling FAQs

Why was I missed?
Please refer to "Why wasn't my trash/recycling picked up?" in the Garbage FAQs above.

What if I have more recycling than what fits in my cart?
Overflow recycling will be picked up.

Can I get a second cart?
No. Please refer to the previous question "What if I have more recycling than what fits in my cart?".

Should I bag my recycling?
Please DO NOT bag your recyclables!

What is my service day?
Please refer to "What is my service day?" in the Garbage FAQs above.

How do I sign up for recycling?
You can sign up here, or by calling 311.

I requested a cart, when will I receive it?
Typically, carts are received within 2-4 weeks. In the meantime, you can take your recycling to any of the city's five free Recycling Drop-Off Centers or to UT's Recycling Center.

I don't qualify for curbside recycling, what are my options?
  1. You can bring separated recyclables to any of the 13 recycling drop-off centers throughout Knoxville for free.
  2. You may contact any private waste hauler for curbside recycling subscription services.
How do I set out my cart?
Please refer to "How do I set out my cart?" in the Garbage FAQs above.

Which holidays interrupt recycle service?
Please refer to "Which holidays interrupt trash services?in the Garbage FAQs above.

What is allowed in my recycle cart?
Accepted materials are discussed here.

Why can I recycle glass at the Recycling Drop-Off Centers but not in my cart?
Glass collected at the City's Recycling Drop-Off Centers is less contaminated and requires much less processing. Learn more here.

If I can't recycle glass in my curbside cart, then why does the label on my cart say it's accepted?
As of 2017, glass is no longer accepted in curbside recycling carts (see previous question); carts that were delivered to homes prior to 2017 will have the older version of what was accepted in the cart. Please feel free to reach out to our office if you would like us to mail you an updated sticker to cover the outdated information.

Is my recycling really being recycled?
Yes! Find out more here.

Can I bring my recycling cart with me when I move?
Yes, so long as the new place is eligible for City curbside services and doesn’t already have a City recycling cart. HOWEVER, you must call 3-1-1 to update the address where the cart is so we can remove the previous address from the recycling route and add the new address—we will also need the serial number on the cart.

What do I do if my recycling cart has been damaged or stolen?
Please refer to "What do I do if my garbage cart has been damaged or stolen?" in the Garbage FAQs above.

Other FAQs

What do I do with trash/material from my renovation/demolition project?
These materials can be taken to the Solid Waste Transfer Facility. Information on hours, fees, accepted material, and further instructions can be found here.

Where can I take hazardous waste?
Household hazardous waste (HHW) can be taken to the Solid Waste Transfer Facility for free. Information on accepted waste and further instructions can be found here.

For any questions that were not answered here, please contact 311.