All urban households that are eligible for kerbside recycling have a 140 litre wheelie bin for recycling. This is for all recycling, except glass. The existing crates (both green and maroon) are now used for glass. Pick-up of wheelie bins and crates alternates each week. Houses are allocated each a “Week 1” or “Week 2” collection schedule. Check the sticker on the side of your bin – your collection cycle number is on the far right.

When a public holiday falls on a collection day, collections for the rest of that week will be a day later. Recycling normally collected on a Friday will be collected on the Saturday.

Download the full kerbside recycling handbook (3MB), including the collection calendar.


Why do we need a new recycling service?

We need to be smarter about how we manage rubbish. The amount of rubbish going to landfill is not sustainable.

This new system is cleaner, greener and smarter and also gives you more recycling capacity.

How much can I fill the crates?

The recycling crates can’t have glass above the rim of the crate. That’s to ensure the bins aren’t too heavy to carry and glass doesn’t fall out and break as we’re emptying the bins.

Does it matter what colour recycling crate I use?

No. You can use either red or green or both for glass recycling.

The wheelie bin is too big and I don’t have space for it, do I have to have one?

A portion of your rates bill pays for a waste and recycling collection service; either at the kerbside outside your house or at your local transfer station.

We appreciate the wheelie bins are larger than the previous recycling crates – it’s because we’re giving you more capacity to recycle. If you don’t like the look of it, there are some fantastic ways to hide wheelie bins, including purpose-built screens or even covers with planters on top.

Who owns the wheelie bins?

The wheelie bins are allocated by the Councils to reside at an individual property (rateable unit). All bins have a unique ID that can be scanned to identify what property the wheelie bin is allocated to.

What happens if my wheelie bin is damaged or stolen?

Damaged bins will be repaired or replaced by Council, except when obviously damaged by users (such as incorrectly towing it behind a vehicle).

If your wheelie bin is missing or stolen, please contact your council as each bin has a unique ID number that can be scanned to locate it if we find it at another location.

If your bin is stolen, your first bin will be replaced with a delivery charge. After the first replacement bin, property owners will be charged $60 per bin for replacements.

How are granny flats serviced under the kerbside collection?

Where a property has not been subdivided but has had a ‘granny flat’ built on the same land parcel as the primary residence, only the primary residence will receive the standard service wheelie bins.

This is because the entire property is only paying one set of rates, so the bin will need to be shared. The simple rule is that if your property has its own rating number a bin will be allocated and the sticker on the side of the bin will specify to which property address it belongs.

There are some exceptions, so give your Council a call.

If I sell my house, can I take my wheelie bin with me?

No. The wheelie bin is allocated to the property and must stay with the property for the new owners or tenants to use.

How will I ever fill a bin this big?

Remember, you don’t have to fill it right to the top every time. You can fill it up over a few weeks. We recommend that you only put the bin out when it is over half full.

Please don’t wedge the contents into the wheelie bin (for example, excess amounts of cardboard) as they may prevent the bin from being emptied when tipped up.

I’m the same size as my wheelie bin. How am I supposed to push it?

It has wheels and a handle, by tilting the bin it becomes fairly easy to roll along the ground.

You can also purchase a hitch so you can tow your wheelie bin with your car. Please see below the links to companies selling wheelie bin tow hitches. ($21 + $9.70 postage) ($24.95) ($25.00)

Disclaimer: prices are indicative as at 3 September 2019. The above information is intended to assist people in their purchasing decision and should not be taken as endorsement of these products. Please do your own research to satisfy yourself that you are making the correct purchase decision.

But what if it’s too heavy?

It’s unlikely that the bin will become too heavy to roll along the ground – that’s because recycling tends to take up space, but not weigh a significant amount.

If you have a long drive Wheelie Bin Towbar hitches are available to reduce the effort.

I have a long driveway or I live on a hill and a wheelie bin will be difficult for me to place at the kerbside.

Many people live on hills or have long drive ways or both. Some are even lucky enough to have driveways close to the beach and made of sand. If you need to tow your wheelie bin to the kerbside by car, you can purchase special wheelie bin tow bar attachments.

Search online for “wheelie bin tow bar attachment” and see what you find or visit your nearest hardware store.

Why do you say we’re getting more when we’re actually getting less because the recycling collection is fortnightly?

Previously you had two crates for all your recycling (100 litres per week or 200 litres per fortnight). Now you have the same two crates (100 litres) plus a 240-litre wheelie bin. That gives you 140 litres more every fortnight.

You’re getting more bang for your ratepayer dollar.

I fill a crate with bottles on a single Friday night alone. Can I have more crates?

You can put out a maximum of two crates every fortnight. You must use official crates which are sturdy and safe for lifting by our contractors. If you find that you are exceeding this amount you can always drop any other recycling off at the Transfer Station free of charge.

Will our rubbish bags cost the same when the new service begins?

Yes. The same official bag service stays the same.

Is there an inorganic collection for appliances / old furniture etc.?

E-waste services were launched in the Wairarapa in 2018; you can now take unwanted electronic goods such as computers, laptops, car batteries, DVD and CD players, routers, household whiteware and kitchen appliances to Masterton, Carterton and Martinborough Transfer Stations.

Unfortunately, we don’t accept old furniture. However, local charities often appreciate donations of furniture or appliances. Otherwise you can take it to your local Reuse Transfer Station. This includes heavy metal objects, old appliances, furniture, decorating materials, old paints and garden waste.

What do I do with garden waste?

If you do not wish to compost your garden waste, it can be taken to your local Refuse or Recycling Transfer Station where you will be charged a fee for its disposal.

Why are the rubbish bags shown in blue, green and yellow?

The three different councils each have different coloured rubbish bags.

Carterton District Council has green.

South Wairarapa District Council has yellow.

Masterton District Council has blue.

What about coastal and rural collections?

For those on the Masterton Coast (Tinui, Riversdale and Castlepoint) there is no change for rubbish and recycling collections.  You will not receive a wheelie bin and can continue to use your existing recycling bins as usual.

What about plastics numbered 3-7, I've heard they're not recyclable?

Plastics that have the number 3-7 on them are “disposable” plastics, we encourage you to avoid using these plastics in the first place if you can. Plastics numbered 1-2 are recyclable and include soft drink bottles, sports bottles, water bottles, milk bottles, cleaning products – go ahead and pop these into your wheelie bin.

Plastics numbered 3-7 (disposable) include: ice cream containers, yoghurt pots, takeaway grocery bags, squeezable bottles, hard containers, medicine bottles, plastic plates/cutlery. Unfortunately, plastics numbered 3-7 are no longer able to be recycled because of changes in the global recycling market.

For the last 12 months Wairarapa Councils have been stockpiling plastics numbered 3-7 in the hopes a market will open up internationally. Luckily, these types of plastics only make up between 3-5 per cent (based on weight) of what Wairarapa residents put in their recycling bins.

Read the three strikes policy around discontinuation of the recycling wheelie bin service.

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