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Frequently Asked Questions


​1. Who do I call to get garbage pickup service?             

​If you live in Oak Harbor city limits, call the City of Oak Harbor at (360) 279-4530. If you live elsewhere on Whidbey Island, call Island Disposal at (360) 678-5701 or (360) 321-1331. Camano Island residents should call Waste Management at 1-800-592-9995.

2. Who do I call to get recycling pickup service?

​Camano Island residents can call Waste Management at 1-800-592-9995.  If you live in Oak Harbor city limits, call the City of Oak Harbor at (360) 279-4530. If you live in the Town of Coupeville, call Island Disposal at (360) 678-5701. If you live elsewhere on Whidbey Island recycling pickup service is currently not available.  You may self haul recyclables to any County Solid Waste facility or Island Recycling.  

3. Can I self-haul my garbage and recycling?

​Yes, you can haul wastes and recyclables to any of our County Solid Waste facilities.  

4. Where can I dispose of household hazardous wastes like paints, solvents, cleaners, and gasoline?

​DON’T throw it in the trash! You can bring your old oil-based paint, oil, antifreeze, and other household hazardous waste to any of our County Solid Waste facilities. There is no charge for household hazardous wastes.

​​5. How can I dispose of latex/acrylic paints and stains?

See our Latex/Acrylic Paints and Stains page.

​6. Where can I dispose of business hazardous wastes?       

​Island County’s Moderate-Risk Waste Collection Facility is open to businesses by appointment, please call​ (360) 679-7386; (360) 321-5111 x7386;  or (360) 629-4522 x7386 for information.  

​7. How do I dispose of fluorescent bulbs/tubes?       

​CFLs contain a small amount of mercury, which means that improper disposal of spent bulbs can lead to health and environmental risks. Don’t throw used CFLs in the trash or break them; save them in a safe place (keep the original packaging!) until you can take them to any of our County Solid Waste facilities

​8. How do I dispose of medication and waste needles that I generate in my home? 

​See our Medications & Sharps Disposal page.

​9. Can I take furniture to the transfer station?

​Furniture in good condition can be donated or sold for reuse.  If the furniture is in poor condition, it may be disposed of at the Coupeville Solid Waste Complex and the Camano Transfer Station

​10. Can't I just burn my garbage?

​No, burning garbage is illegal and can be dangerous.  Breathing smoke from burning garbage can cause or worsen asthma, bronchitis and emphysema and damage children's lungs.  Burning plastic releases many cancer causing agents into the air that you or your neighbors breathe.  For information about outdoor burning see the Northwest Clean Air Agency’s website.  

​11. Where can I dispose of my yard waste?       

​Yard waste is accepted at the Coupeville Solid Waste Complex and the Camano Transfer Station.  Yard waste includes grass clippings, brush, leaves and branches.  Yard waste does not include sod, dirt, gravel, rocks, plastics, wood, lumber or garbage; these items are accepted as garbage, construction or depending upon size hard-to-handle wastes.  Visit the Yard & Garden Waste page for alternative disposal options.

12. Where can I dispose of construction or demolition debris?       

​Construction debris is accepted at the Coupeville Solid Waste Complex and the Camano Transfer Station.  See Construction and Demolition Debris

13. My plastic item has the recycling arrows and a number on it. Does that mean it is recyclable?

​Technically, all plastics can be recycled. All plastics are not recycled because there is no economically feasible market for most of them.  Island County does not use the recycling numbers printed on plastics as a guide to recycling. Why? The numbers printed on plastic products identifies the type of resin used in making the product.  However, some items with the same number cannot be recycled together because they are manufactured using a different heating and molding process. (For example, markets that accept #1 plastic bottles often don’t want #1 plastic cups.)  In addition, the cost of collecting, sorting and remanufacturing some items exceeds the value of the recycled plastic. And so many plastic items cannot currently be recycled, even though they have the recycling arrows and number on them.

To avoid confusion ignore the numbers and remember we accept clean plastic bottles, jugs and dairy tubs, with lids removed.  All other plastic should be reused or go in the garbage. (Reusing an item saves 20 times as much energy as recycling it.)

Clean plastic grocery bags are accepted in recycling containers at many grocery stores. However, plastic bags are a major cause of litter and waste, it is much better to use a durable shopping bag.

14. Why can’t I recycle plastic lids and caps?

​Lids can be made of different plastic resins than containers.  Also, their small size makes them hard to compact in bales and they can cause damage to baling equipment.

15. What do I do with packing peanuts?

​Packing peanuts can be reused, taken to mailing centers or disposed of as garbage at any of our County Solid Waste facilities.  Please bag packing peanuts.

16. What is the phone number to call for additional information?       

​Call the Recycling Information Line weekdays, 9:30 a.m. – 4:30 p.m. 

North/Central Whidbey: (360) 679-7386 
South Whidbey: (360) 321-5111 ext. 7386
Camano: (360) 629-4522 ext. 7386