Bin FAQs

This page contains the questions we are asked most frequently about bins. Click on the question below to show the answer.

Questions 

Why has my bin not been emptied?

There are a number of reasons why your bin may not have been emptied, therefore please go through the questions below before reporting a missed collection:

  • Has an advisory card explaining why the bin has not been emptied/been left?
  • What time was the bin out for collection? - Bins must be placed out by 6am on collection day to ensure they are emptied.
  • Which colour bin was placed out for collection? - Unfortunately we can only empty the correct colour bin on collection day. Please visit our collection calendar to find out which bin was scheduled for collection.  
  • Please note that green bin collections are monthly rather than fortnightly between 27 November 2017 and 5 February 2018. Please visit our collection calendar for details.

If the correct bin has been placed out for collection by 6am, please report your missed bin online before 3.30pm the day after your scheduled collection to report a missed bin collection.

Can you assist me with putting my bin out?

Assisted collections are designed for residents who, due to disability or physical impairment, are unable to place their bins at their collection point and where nobody else in the household can assist them.
Collections can be made from a more convenient place on the property (e.g. by the front door).
Complete an application form for an assisted collection service or alternatively please call 03450 450 063, or email: env.health@scambs.gov.uk to request a printed form.

How can I keep my bin clean and hygienic?

Keep your bin lids closed to help stop rain, flies and other vermin getting in and also prevent smells getting out.

Wrap all food waste in newspaper or paper bags before putting it in your green bin, and rinse food off all food packaging.
Spillages on the outside or lip of the bin could attract flies, so remove these where possible.
If you wish to wash out your bin, this can be done by lying it on its side and using a hosepipe to wash it out, leaving it to drain and dry out naturally.
Although the Council cannot offer a bin cleaning service, there are a number of private companies in the area who can provide this service. Check the yellow pages or South Cambs Magazine for details.

Can I use food waste bags in my green bin?

Please use paper food waste bags or newspaper for wrapping food waste for your green bin. Biodegradable or compostable 'plastic' bags (e.g. potato or corn starch bags) do not break down quickly enough in the fast composting process we use. Paper kitchen caddy liners can be purchased from our Cambourne offices, directly from alina or from most supermarkets.

I have no space to store my bins, what should I do?

If there is no room to store 3 wheeled bins (e.g. in flats, terraced houses, bedsits etc.) the council will make alternative arrangements. A visit can be arranged to assess your individual circumstances. Please call 03450 450 063 to request a call-back from a Refuse and Recycling Support Officer.

How big are the wheeled bins?

  • Capacity: 240 litres
  • Height: 1062 mm
  • Width: (from wheel to wheel): 577 mm
  • Depth: (from rim to handle) : 715 mm

I have moved into a new build property, how do I get new bins?

To request new bins please contact our Refuse and Recycling Support Officer on 03450 450 063 (8am to 5.30pm - Mon to Fri) who will be happy to help.

Can I order a new or additional bin?

Additional blue and green bins can be supplied free of charge. Black bins are subject to our standard charge of £50.

All requests for additional black bin capacity will be individually assessed. Black bins are ONLY to be used for residual, i.e. non recyclable or compostable waste. Where a need can be demonstrated following assessment, additional capacity can be supplied subject to our standard charge. This is an administration charge that covers the cost of procurement, storage, administration and delivery of wheeled bins.

Only bins supplied by the Greater Cambridge Shared Waste Service will be emptied.

What should I do if my blue bin is full and I have more recycling?

If the blue bin is full, you can put excess recyclable material out for collection in one transparent sack next to the blue bin. Please put any glass in your blue bin, not in the sack for safety reasons. One bundle of cardboard may be left next to your bin if it is of a size which would fit inside the bin if there were space. Please tape or tie into a bundle to assist collection. Oversized cardboard or more than one sack will not be collected. Black sacks will not be collected. You can get an additional blue bin free of charge. Contact us using the details below.

Why has recycling I left next to my bin not been collected?

We aim to collect extra recycling (no glass please for safety reasons) left next to the blue bin if it is contained in one transparent sack (available from supermarkets or online), or one bundle of cardboard (please tape or tie together) of a size which would fit inside the bin with the lid closed if there were space. . The crew will empty your blue bin first, then place the extra recycling in the bin and empty it again. Oversized cardboard or more than one sack will not be collected. Black sacks will not be collected.

We no longer collect extra recycling from returnable containers or cardboard boxes for safety reasons. If you regularly have extra recycling please order an extra blue bin, these are now free of charge.

It may not always be possible to collect additional recycling if there is a high volume on your collection round or if there are traffic delays which jeopardise the completion of bin collections.

Contact Details