The City of Oak Harbor went fully automated in 2006 to provide our citizens with a more efficient and easier way to recycle. We have expanded our recycling program to include our Commercial customers. Below are some advantages and benefits to our program.


  • There are many advantages to the recycling carts. They help keep more solid waste out of landfills-saving you and the City money! Recycling costs far less than hauling waste to an out-of-state landfill so recycling just makes sense!
  • You may be able to reduce the size of your regular roll cart-which will mean extra savings in your monthly bill!
  • Here are some other big benefits:
  • Wheels and handle make the cart easy to move
  • No need to sort recyclables
  • One container means just one trip to the curb
  • No need to set aside mixed paper or cardboard
  • All recyclables can fit in the cart
  • Snug, waterproof lid keeps out rain and prying eyes

Please note: All recyclables should fit into the cart. Items left outside the cart (such as small amounts of cardboard cut to 4 feet by 4 feet) must be neatly bundled and not leaning against the bins.

ExceptionsSolid Waste Truck

Here are a few exceptions to this rule. Please continue placing these items next to your new cart:

  • Motor oil
  • Car batteries
  • Small amounts of scrap metal (no small appliances)

Materials That Can Be Recycled

  • Clean aluminum beverage and food cans
  • Clean tin food and beverage cans
  • #1 PETE plastic food &beverage containers
  • #2 natural plastic bottles and jugs
  • Clean cardboard, newspaper, paper

Materials That Can Not be Recycled

The following items may not be recycled. Please put the items below in your regular trash. When in doubt throw it out.

  • No food, organic waste or food-soiled items (such as pizza boxes, aluminum foil, paper plates and/or towels, TV dinner trays or used tissues).
  • No foam, Styrofoam and/or packing peanuts
  • No greenery, lawn and/or garden waste they can go in your Yard waste bin or pre-paid City of Oak Harbor Yard waste bags
  • No soiled/wet newspaper, rubber bands or string
  • No wide-mouthed plastic tubs (such as margarine, yogurt or cottage cheese), plastic trays and/or toys, automotive containers, poison or pesticide bottles
  • No plastic bags and/or plastic sheets
  • No tanglers such as garden hose or Christmas lights
  • No glass
  • No diapers
  • Contaminating your recycle bin with non-recyclables could cost you a fee.


Please follow these simple recycling guidelines:Cart Placement Instructions

  • Recyclables should be rinsed, dry and empty
  • Use water to rinse containers-leave NO food residue
  • Do not bag items
  • Labels can stay on
  • Throw away plastic lids
  • Carts should be at the curb by 7 am on your scheduled recycling day


Glass is no longer accepted at curbside because it often breaks in the cart and in the truck. Glass shards mix with paper and other recyclables which damages recycling processing equipment lowers the value of recycled paper, increased processing costs, and poses a danger to workers at the sorting stations. We still encourage you to continue to recycle glass. The Oak Harbor Marina and Safeway parking lots contain a drop-off point for glass. CFL (Compact Fluorescent Lamp) Bulbs can be recycled at City Hall, Senior Center, Library, Ace Hardware, Home Depot, and the Island County Recycle Station 3151 Oak Harbor Road

New Recycling Cart Guidelines

  • Please follow these guidelines when rolling out your new recycling cart:
  • Minimum 3-foot separation between your recycle cart, Yard waste cart, and Solid waste cart.
  • Cart handles must face the house; the lid opening must face the street.
  • Place cart within 3 feet of the road
  • The cart should be at least 3 feet away from basketball hoops, trees, and mailboxes; 5 feet away from cars.
  • DO NOT block mailboxes at any time.
  • Allow 18 feet of space above the cart so the automated "robotic arm" on the collection truck has room to lift the cart.
  • Set your cart out by 7 am on your scheduled recycling day.
  • Please remove empty carts from the curb as soon as possible.