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City of Rochester

Recycling (Residential)

The City provides recycling collection to residential households in conjunction with refuse collection.

The service is financed through the residential refuse collection charge that is included on the City property tax bill. Each residential refuse customer receives one recycling container, at no charge. Recyclable materials generated at residential premises are collected once each week on the designated refuse collection day. The recycling container should be placed at the curb by 6:30 a.m. on collection day. Recyclables that do not fit in the recycling container may be put in brown paper bags and placed next to the recycling container. 

Request a recycle box

Additional recycle boxes may be requested online or by calling 311. Outside of the city, please call (585) 428-5990.

What can be recycled? woman placing recycling at curb

Plastics #1-7 and some metals are recyclable. Click here for the full list of what can and can't be recycled.

What's the Best Way to Fill my Recycle Box

Did you know that your collector sorts your recyclables before he throws them onto the truck? Organizing your recycle box can make City recycling run a lot smoother!

The best way is to place your papers, flattened cardboard, and magazines on the bottom of the box and place the containers on top of the paper. You can even put two paper shopping bags in your boxes- one to hold paper, the other to hold containers- to make a clear separation of items and ease the sorting time at the truck.

If you have flattened cardboard that is too big to be placed in the box, it is fine to place it under the box so it doesn’t blow away. Flattened cardboard should be cut in lengths no longer that 4’ and if there is more than ½ cubic yard, should be bundled and tied.

If you have containers that can be flattened (milk jugs, juice containers), doing so will save room in the trucks!

Special Conditions

Recycling is mandatory. However, an exemption from the recycling requirement may be granted to individuals who are unable to carry recyclable materials to the curb. Wheeled recycling containers are available for use by physically challenged individuals. Property owners who rent to tenants may apply for a waiver of primary responsibility from compliance with recycling laws. Inquiries about exemptions, wheeled containers, and waivers of primary responsibility may be made to 311 (outside of the city, please call (585) 428-5990).  


Refuse collection dates will be altered in weeks with major holidays (New Year's Day, Martin Luther King, Jr. Day, Memorial Day, Independence Day, Labor Day, Thanksgiving Day, and Christmas Day). Typically during these weeks, service on and after the holiday is delayed one day. Call 311 for information regarding service during holiday weeks calling or check Street Beat . 

Please refer to the links in the side column for the collection schedule and other related items.

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