Trash and Recycling Info.

Residential Recycling and Trash Collection Information
Recycling is mandatory in the State of New Jersey and at no time are you permitted to place recyclables in the trash.

The recycling containers provided by the Middlesex County Improvement Authority (MCIA) are for the specified recyclable material indicated only. If trash is placed in your recycling container it will not be collected.

  • Collection of recyclable material will take place between 6 a.m. and 6 p.m. Recyclable material should be placed curbside after 5 p.m. the night before or by 6 a.m. on the morning of the scheduled collection day. Bags CAN’T be used as recycling containers and will be tagged and remain uncollected.
  • Household trash must be placed curbside after 5 p.m. on the evening before the scheduled collection day. Up to three trash containers will be accepted. Trash placed in plastic disposal bags, not less than 3 mils thick and securely tied, will also be accepted. No container may weigh more than 50 lbs. or be larger than 32 gallons. Residents must call the New Brunswick Department of Public Works at (732) 745-5104 to arrange for the collection of bulk items or additional solid waste material. The Middlesex County landfill is closed on the holidays listed on the collection schedule.  No garbage will be collected on the holidays as shown.

2016 Collection Schedule – English

2016 Collection Schedule – Spanish

How to Get Curbside Recycling Containers

  • Each new homeowner is entitled to 1 round 20-gallon recycling container and 1 rectangular 14-gallon recycling container for free for each residential unit at the time they purchase their new home.  New homeowners must bring a copy of their new deed to the New Brunswick Department of Public Works at 400 Jersey Avenue Building #1 to pick up containers. Containers should be picked up within 1 year of purchasing the new home.
  • Residents and businesses must pay for additional containers.
  • Residents and businesses must pay for new bins if old bins are lost or stolen.
  • All containers are sold at the cost incurred and set by the Middlesex County Improvement Authority (MCIA).
  • The 20-gallon round bottle and can container currently costs $8.90.
  • The 14-gallon rectangular mixed paper container currently costs $12.25.
  • The City is tax exempt; therefore no tax will be charged.
  • Only cash and checks will be accepted.  Make checks payable to The City of New Brunswick. A receipt will be provided.
  • Broken or damaged City/County issued recycling containers that are brought back to the Department of Public Works will be replaced with a brand new City/County issued recycling container free of charge for New Brunswick residents only. 
  • The City/County recycling containers are for the specified recyclable materials only.  If trash is placed in your recycling container it will not be collected.
  • Use of other containers for recycling is not encouraged, however other open rigid containers up to 32 gallons and no heavier than 50 lbs will be accepted for collection of single stream recycling.
  • Containers can be obtained during normal office hours Monday – Friday at the Department of Public Works at 400 Jersey Avenue New Brunswick, NJ 08901.  Please come in between 9 a.m. and 3 p.m. excluding holidays.
  • Please call (732) 745-5059 if you have any questions.
  • Thank you for using bins, not bags, for recycling.

E-Waste Recycling

Under current state law, manufacturers of Covered Electronic Devices (CED) are required to pay for the recycling of TV’s and computers.  However, the state law isn’t working as intended, resulting in the closure of the New Brunswick E-waste drop off site.   

Covered Electronic devices (CEDs) can not be thrown in the trash and must be recycled.  CED include televisions, computer monitors, personal, desktop and laptop computers.
Residents are encouraged to call the manufacturer of their device to determine recycling options. Click here for a list of manufacturers’ contact information. 
If your brand of television or computer is not listed, please contact the NJDEP at 1-866-DEPKNOW or visit

Beginning December 12, 2015, only paint and paint related items can be taken to the DPW drop off on the 2nd Saturday of each month.

Recycling 101

 At a time when the City has recently won our first Sustainable Jersey award and when “going green” is a growing issue of importance, ensuring proper recycling and relegation is the key to doing everything we can today for a better tomorrow!

Recycling can become confusing. From plastics to cans to paper and then you add in those tiny numbers that are supposed to make recycling easier. But the question is, here in New Brunswick, what numbers can you recycle?

Well, here’s the answer plus some helpful hints.

  1. Always recycle #’s 1 and 2Recycling Numbers 1 and 2
  2. Use bins, not bags! Bags get stuck in the recycling equipment at the facilities, cause more collection injuries and delay both trash and recycling collection. So rather than putting your recyclables in bags, please put them in the City recycling bins. Check them out here:
  3. Any paper you can easily tear can be recycled
  4. Staples don’t need to be removed from papers
  5. Bottle Caps should be thrown in the trash
  6. Household batteries go in the trash, but rechargeable and cell phone batteries get recycled
  7. Place recycling curbside the night before your recycling collection day after 5:00 p.m.
  8. Bundle and tie all corrugated cardboard for recycling collection.

For an even easier way to figure out what’s recyclable and what’s trash, download the free MyWaste app.

Use Bins – Not Bags!


(Click above image for Use Bins – Not Bags! to make it bigger)When disposing of recyclables, New Brunswick residents must use bins instead of bags. But why?The City of New Brunswick does not allow for pickup of recyclable items in bags. The disposal of recyclables in bins is better for the environment and for the sanitation workers tasked with picking them up.Bins cost less, they do not produce extra waste, and they’re easier to pick up and empty than bags. They can also get tangled in machines at recycling plants, slowing down the process.Residents should places their cans, bottles and mixed paper curbside in open ridged containers that are no more than 32 gallons in size and no heavier than 50 pounds. This way, sanitation workers will be best able to quickly and efficiently handle collection.Check out the flyer above from New Brunswick Department of Public Works for more information about the benefits of bins over bags.

Brush Recycling
Brush (e.g. branches and woody plants no greater than 5 inches in diameter), will be collected BY APPOINTMENT ONLY.
Brush must be tied with string in bundles not to exceed 50 lbs. or 6 ft. in length. Place small items like twigs (no more than 1 ft. in length) in open rigid containers without lids.
Please call (732) 745-5059 to schedule an appointment.

Leaf Composting
New Brunswick will collect leaves curbside for composting in April, May, November and December. Leaf compost may be available to residents in the spring. For more information, call the New Brunswick Division of Recycling at (732) 745-5059. Residents may pick up 20 free bags per property and purchase any additional bags for $3.25 for bundles of 10.

Christmas Tree Recycling
Christmas trees will be collected curbside for composting in January. Residents are requested to place bare Christmas trees curbside on Tuesday nights for collection every Wednesday in January.

Tire Recycling
Tires MUST be recycled! Middlesex County residents can bring tires to four County Tire Recycling Centers located in East Brunswick, Metuchen, Plainsboro and Woodbridge. Call the Middlesex County Division of Solid Waste Management at (732) 745-4170.

Household Hazardous Waste
Household Hazardous Waste items should be disposed of at a Middlesex County Household Hazardous Waste Collection Day. Call the Middlesex County Division of Solid Waste Management at (732) 745-4170 for more information.

Motor Oil Recycling
Used Motor oil MUST be recycled! Up to 30 quarts of used motor oil will be accepted per year per resident at the Department of Public Works Central Garage at 400 Jersey Avenue, Mon. through Fri. 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. Call the New Brunswick Division of Recycling at (732) 745-5059 for more information.

Used Cooking Oil/Grease
Do not pour cooking oil or grease into your sink. Put used cooking oil/grease into a container, let it solidify, seal it and place inside your household trash container.

Appliances and Scrap Metal Recycling
New Brunswick Department of Public Works will collect appliances (white goods such as refrigerators, washers, dryers, etc.) and scrap metal curbside BY APPOINTMENT ONLY. NO CAR PARTS ACCEPTED. Call the New Brunswick Division of Recycling at (732) 745-5059 to schedule an appointment. Fees may apply.

Middlesex County Residential Paint Recycling Program
Middlesex County residents can bring paint and paint-related products to Dunellen, East Brunswick, Helmetta, Middlesex, New Brunswick, Old Bridge, South Brunswick, South Plainfield, and Woodbridge for proper disposal. For more information or directions, call the Middlesex County Division of Solid Waste Management at (732) 745-4170.

Stop-Think-Go Green – Keep New Brunswick Clean!
In an effort to reduce litter, the City of New Brunswick has implemented a litter reduction educational program: Stop-Think-Go Green – Keep New Brunswick Clean! The litter reduction educational program supplements the placement of additional City litter receptacles, continued mechanical and hand street sweeping, continued Clean Communities volunteer clean-ups, School Kids Sweep Up Day, Urban Clean-up Week, inspections and the Clean City Block Captain program.

For more information on Middlesex County Division of Solid Waste Management run recycling programs, including but not limited to, tires, paint, household hazardous waste, televisions and computers, please go to click on the “Residents” tab and select Recycling Programs.

*13.08.180 Prohibited discharges into sewers No person shall discharge or cause to be discharged any of the following described waters or wastes to any public sewer: any water or waste which may contain more than one hundred milligrams per liter (100 mg ll) by weight of fat, oil, wax or grease.