London Borough of Barnet

Household waste and recycling bin collections

bins october 14

Household waste and recycling bins

Green bin collections during cold weather 

During very cold weather the contents of green bins can become frozen and stuck inside the bin – preventing the contents from being fully emptied by your collection crew. For health and safety reasons, crews cannot manually remove any items which are stuck in the bins. We will empty the contents on your next scheduled collection. Where possible, the council will endeavour to provide an interim collection of those bins that could not be fully emptied. If you would like to request an interim collection due to frozen contents in your bin please contact the Customer Services Group (telephone: 020 8359 4600, email

Your waste and recycling bins

Depending on the kind of property you live in you will have a different selection of bins. This page is for residents who live in houses, converted flats in houses and small blocks of flats with five or less properties.

Residents living in blocks with six or more flats should read the flats waste and recycling pages.   

Blue bin for mixed recycling 

Your 240 litre blue bin is for mixed recycling and is collected weekly. You do not need to sort the items. 

14 October w4 mixed recycling with icons

    Mixed recycling:

    • cardboard
    • cartons
    • food tins and drinks cans
    • household plastic packaging
    • mixed glass, bottles and jars
    • mixed paper, including loose shredded paper

    What you shouldn't put in your blue bin

    • batteries: please place household batteries in a clear bag on top of the lid of your blue recycling bin on your collection day
    • textiles: please do not place clothes and textiles in your blue recycling bin. Textiles can be taken to the Civic Amenity and Recycling Centre, charity shops or textile recycling banks. If you cannot recycle your textiles in any of these ways please contact us using the details on the right
    • electricals: You should not place electrical items in your blue bin. These items can be recycled at the Civic Amenity and Recycling Centre. Small electrical items can also be recycled at various electrical recycling banks across the borough

    You can also arrange a free electrical recycling collection from your home by contacting 123 Recycle For Free

    Download an A-Z list of what can be recycled and where.

    Additional Blue Bin

    If you need an additional blue recycling bin you can request one at no cost using the bin order form in the ‘apply for it now’ section or by contacting Street Based Services.

    Clear Sack Recycling Service
    If you cannot physically accommodate a blue bin on your property, we will provide a clear sack recycling service. We will deliver batches of recycling sacks two times a year and you can put the same items in your sack as in a blue bin. If you are unsure if this applies to you or need to order more sacks contact us on the details on the right.

    Brown bins for food waste 

    You have a 7 litre food waste caddy for your kitchen and a 23 litre food waste bin. Your caddy is for you to collect unwanted food and leftovers in your kitchen, which you can empty into your larger food waste bin, that is kept outside. The brown bin has a lockable lid.

    We will collect your brown food waste bin weekly.

    14 October brown bins food waste

    All cooked and uncooked food, including:

    • bread, pasta, and rice 
    • dairy
    • fish
    • fruit and veg
    • meat and bones
    • tea and coffee grounds

    Closing and locking your brown bin

    how to lock food bins

    1. empty kitchen caddy: take bag from caddy and tie it up
    2. open outdoor food waste bin by moving handle to rear of the bin
    3. put tied bag in
    4. close and lock food waste bin by closing lid and pulling handle to upright position

    Compostable liners

    compostable logo

    Compostable liners are widely available at most supermarkets, many hardware stores, and through online suppliers. We can only accept liners with the seedling logo, as these will break down during the composting process.  Here are some of our recommended suppliers:

    If you do not wish to use liners you can place your food waste loose into your brown bin for collection.

      Waste is a valuable resource and composting at home is a great way to directly reap the benefits of your waste. Anyone can compost at home - you don't need to be a keen gardener, have a big garden or even live in a house to make compost. Check our Compost at Home pages for details of how you can compost. 

      Green bin for garden waste 

      Barnet offer an optional service for garden waste. If you are signed up to this service, you will be provided a green wheeled bin which should only be used for garden waste. Your green bin is collected fortnightly.

      Green recycling bin

      Garden waste, including:

      • grass cuttings
      • hedge trimmings and tree prunings
      • branches up to 20cm in diameter (8") and under 60cm (24") in length
      • flowers leaves and weeds

      The majority of the organic waste collected in Barnet is garden waste. Collecting garden waste with food waste together is costly as it has to be collected weekly and processed in an indoor facility due to food waste treatment. 

      For many residents with a green bin they will have a Saturday collection. You can check your green bin collection day using our postcode lookup.

      Black bin for general waste 

      All items you cannot recycle should go in your black refuse bin. Your black bin is collected weekly.

      Black refuse bin (240 litre)
      • Un-recyclable rubbish
      • Plastic film/wrapping
      • Polystyrene 
      • Nappies and pet waste

      Please note that energy saving light bulbs contain small amounts of mercury and must be treated as hazardous waste. These should not be put in your blue or black bins but should be taken to the Civic Amenity and Recycling Centre for safe disposal. 

      Street-based services

      North London Business Park (NLBP), Oakleigh Road South, London N11 1NP

      Tel: 020 8359 4600

      Fax: 0870 889 7459