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2015 Outstanding Philanthropic Small Business

WRRA 2007 Sustainable Business of the Year Winner

2006 Recyclers of the Year

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Residential Waste Collection

Residential garbage collection is available to all single-family residences and multi-family units (1-4 units) in our service area.

Service Area: Bellingham, Ferndale, Birch Bay, Blaine and the majority of unincorporated Whatcom County.


Container Options Dimensions Max. Weight Frequency Notes
90 gal Toter®
Wheeled container, handle, lid
30"W x 34"D x 42"H Max. Wt. 150 lbs. (contents) Weekly, Every-other-Week, Monthly  
60 gal Toter®
Wheeled container, handle, lid
27"W x 32"D x 39"H Max. Wt. 100 lbs. (contents) Weekly, Every-other-Week, Monthly  
32 gal Can (two handles)   Max. Wt. 65 lbs. (can + contents) Monthly - Bellingham, Weekly - Ferndale Customer-supplied can
30 gal Can (two Handles)   Max. Wt. 65 lbs. (can + contents) Weekly, Every-other-week, Monthly – outside Bellingham and Ferndale
Monthly – Ferndale
Customer-supplied can.
Note: Monthly – Ferndale is SSC-supplied can
20 gal Can (two handles)   Max. Wt. 35 lbs. (can + contents) Weekly, Every-other-Week, Monthly Customer-supplied can.
Available for use by all customers except those in Bellingham and Ferndale.

Extra Charges: Extra charges apply on overweight and overfull containers and for garbage piled on top of, or beside, containers.

Effective January 1, 2012: Extra charges also apply to customers (outside Bellingham and Ferndale) with every-other-week or monthly pickup that request service on an off week because they missed a scheduled pickup.

Note: SSC supplied containers are the property of SSC. Please label them with your address. DO NOT take them with you if you move. Customers are responsible for any theft, loss or damage in excess of normal use of SSC containers. A replacement fee will be charged for lost or stolen SSC containers. SSC is not responsible for items left in, on, or near garbage Toters® or garbage cans.

Live or work in outlying areas? SSC supports the efforts of Western Wildlife Outreach. Check out these garbage and recycling storage tips.

Collection: Please bag all trash before placing in container. Set out containers the evening before your collection day. SSC crews works all holidays that fall on weekdays. Please set out collection containers as usual. Click here for holiday collection schedule tips.

Automated Collection Truck - Customer Tips

  • Place Toter(s)® at curb, with the handle toward the house.
  • Keep at least 6 feet of clear space around all sides.
  • Do not place Toter(s)® near other garbage/recycling containers, trees, shrubs, utility poles, mailboxes, vehicles, etc.

Forgot to set containers out? If you missed your regularly scheduled pickup, please contact us or (360) 734-3490 for collection options.

Weather-related Service Delays: Collections may be missed due to weather or road conditions. Click here for weather-related service info. If missed garbage and recyclables are collected on your next regularly scheduled pick-up, no credit will be given. For schedule changes or service interruptions, click here or contact us during office hours or (360) 734-3490 for instructions. Our offices are open Monday-Friday 8AM-5PM. Closed most major holidays. Closed 12-1PM for lunch.

Collection Schedules: To request a collection calendar, click here, contact us or call (360) 734-3490.

Pack Out Service (Option): Available for an additional fee. Contact us for rates, questions or to schedule service.

Toter Cleaning: $10.50/Toter™ (subject to change without notice). Call 360-734-3490 or email us for current pricing and to schedule a Toter swap. Note: Five (5) days notice required for scheduling.

New Customer? To start service, click here, contact us or call (360) 734-3490.

Start / Stop Service: To start or stop service(s) on an existing account, login to your online account or contact us or (360) 734-3490.

Our temporary stop service option is available to customers gone one month or more. To arrange this service, contact us at or (360) 734-3490.

During the temporary service stoppage, all SSC recycling and garbage containers are removed (at no charge). Once service resumes, containers are re-delivered free of charge.

Billing/Rates: Billing is every other month for Bellingham and Ferndale customers. Every three months for all other residential customers. Commercial customers are billed monthly. To pay online or set up automated payments, click here.

For rates, please contact us or (360) 734-3490. Why are rates not listed online?

Planning an event? Visit our event services page for more info on temporary service at your event.

R-3 Truck
SSC is a WWU Off-Campus Partner

SSC Truck in the Snow


Automated Route Decal


Dumpsters Length* Depth** Height
1-yd 80" 24" 34"
1.5-yd 80" 28" 36"
2-yd 80" 38" 40"
3-yd 80" 50" 46"
4-yd 84" 62" 56"
6-yd (cathedral roof) 80" 68" 71"
8-yd (cathedral roof) 80" 73" 86"

Width: *Left to right as you face the container. Includes pockets.
Depth: **Front to back as you face the container.
All dimensions are approximate: Allow 3" +/-


Wheels (Option) - Available on containers up to 4-yd in size.

Lock Bars (Option) - Available upon request for any size container.

Gate Service (Option) - Available for a small charge. If locked, customer must unlock or supply a standard SSC dumpster lock. Purchase lock from Accurate Lock & Security, Inc. or Security Solutions. Options also available for roll-up doors, parking garage gates, etc.

Pack Out Service (Option) - Available for customers whose containers must be moved more than 5 feet to reach collection truck. SSC driver takes container to truck, empties it and returns it to designated storage location. Small charge per pick-up on containers 4-yd and smaller (note: there are no wheels on 6-yd and up). Due to weight, most restaurants cannot have Pack Out Service over 2-yd. Contact us for rates or more info.


Drop Boxes

All sizes are approximate. For enclosure guidelines and info click here. For additional questions please contact us.

Gate Service (Option)—Available for a small charge. If locked, customer must unlock or supply a standard SSC dumpster lock. Purchase lock from Accurate Lock & Security, Inc. or Security Solutions. Options also available for roll-up doors, parking garage gates, etc.

Drop Boxes Width* Length** Height Frequency Notes
15-yd 8' 12' 5' Scheduled service or on-call  
20-yd 8' 17' 6' Scheduled service or on-call  
30-yd 8' 18-20' 8' Scheduled service or on-call  
40-yd 8' 23' 8' Scheduled service or on-call  

Width: *Left to right as you face the container
Length: **Front to back as you face the container
All sizes are approximate


Gate Service (Option) - Available for a small charge. If locked, customer must unlock or supply a standard SSC dumpster lock. Purchase lock from Accurate Lock & Security, Inc. or Security Solutions. Options also available for roll-up doors, parking garage gates, etc.


patriotic dropbox

Manage Your Account Online

Pay your bill, order a new service or change existing service, update your contact info, sign up for paperless e-statements and more with our online account management system. Click here to sign up. You will need to create a user name and password and will want your most recent SSC bill handy which lists your account number and invoice number.

Collection schedules are available on your online account. To request a collection calendar, please contact us.

Understanding Your Bill

Sanitary Service Company, Inc. (SSC) provides you with garbage and recycling collection service. You pay us to collect these materials. On your bill, you will see:

  • Actual cost of collecting your garbage
  • Actual cost of collecting your recyclables
  • The value (less any processing charges) of recyclables sold (shown as a commodity credit or commodity debit)

Recyclables are sold and the value we receive (if any) from the sale of these materials is applied to your collection bill in the form of a commodity credit or debit. The commodity credit or commodity debit that appears on your bill reflects market conditions of the previous six months. Market prices for recyclables go up and down just like prices for other commodities, such as lumber and gasoline. Following a period of high (or positive) market values, your commodity credit will increase, but still may be a debit depending on market conditions. Following a year of low (or negative) market values, your commodity credit will decrease and may become a debit. The sale of these recyclables helps lower your overall bill. In years when we pay to have your recyclables processed, please remember it is still less expensive than disposing of these materials as garbage. We encourage you to continue recycling!

The commodity credit or commodity debit is reviewed and adjusted by the Washington Utilities and Transportation Commission (UTC). The UTC reviews and approves our rates (except for residents in the cities of Bellingham and Ferndale) to ensure you are paying a fair price for the service you receive and fair value for your recyclables.

Residential Recycling Commodity Credit/Commodity Debit History
1996Commodity Credit$0.26/month
1997Commodity Debit$0.83/month
1998Commodity Debit$0.46/month
1999Commodity Debit$0.62/month
2000Commodity Credit$0.26/month
2001Commodity Credit$0.27/month
2002Commodity Debit$0.62/month
2003Commodity Debit$0.24/month
2004Commodity Debit$0.22/month
2005Commodity Debit$0.16/month
2006Commodity Debit$0.21/month
2007Commodity Debit$0.32/month
2008Commodity Debit$0.38/month
2009Commodity Debit$0.15/month
2010Commodity Debit$0.58/month
2011Commodity Credit$0.24/month
2012Commodity Credit$0.51/month
2013Commodity Debit$0.12/month
2014Commodity Debit$0.47/month
2015Commodity Debit$0.16/month
2016Commodity Debit$0.47/month
2017Commodity Debit$0.42/month
2018Commodity Debit$0.89/month
2019Commodity Debit$1.99/month
January 1, 2020Commodity Debit$1.69/month
July 1, 2020Commodity Debit$2.36/month
January 1, 2021Commodity Debit$1.73/month
July 1, 2021Commodity Debit$1.73/month
January 1, 2022Commodity Debit$1.69/month

You can help keep your bill low by recycling as much as possible and buying products made from recycled materials. Increasing demand for products made from recycled materials helps strengthen recycling markets. By recycling, you also reduce the amount of garbage you generate and help conserve valuable resources.

Utilities and Transportation Commission (UTC) Garbage & Recycling Consumer Information

small pdf imageConsumer Guide for Residential Garbage and Recycling

zero waste

Medicines and Sharps Disposal

Medicines (From HOUSEHOLDS)

Please do NOT flush, trash, or store unwanted, unused, or expired medications. If your household medicine(s) cannot be disposed of through a participating pharmacy or via one of the organizations listed below, then mix the medicine(s) with wet coffee grounds or wetted cat litter in a plastic bag. Tie the bag shut and discard in the garbage.

To safely dispose of expired or unwanted medicine(s) from your household, or for questions or more information about the disposal of household medicine(s) or residential biomedical waste(s), check out these resources:

Narcotic pain relievers and prescribed controlled substances, not including illegal narcotics, are accepted at the Bellingham Police Department during weekday business hours. For more info about drop off in Ferndale click here.

For medicine(s) in syringes, see SHARPS section below.

Medicine(s) (From BUSINESSES)

For questions, information and laws regarding disposal of medicine(s) or biomedical waste(s) from your business, check out these resources:

For medicine(s) in syringes, see SHARPS section below.

Sharps (From HOUSEHOLDS)

Residential sharps generated from self-treatment (ex. hypodermic needles, syringes with needles attached, scalpel blades, lancets and unused medicines left in syringes) can be disposed as household garbage when properly packaged and labeled.

To safely dispose of used needles, syringes or unused medicines left in syringes (sharps) from your household, please place in a 2-liter soda bottle and seal securely. Label "SHARPS" and discard in the garbage. For more information on sharps disposal visit the Whatcom County Health Department.

If you are given an empty, official sharps disposal container by your health care provider for your use at home, please use that container until it is full, or you are otherwise finished with it, then seal it according to the manufacturer's directions and place in the regular garbage for disposal.

For questions or more information about safely disposing of household sharps or residential biomedical waste(s), contact the Whatcom County Health Department or call (360) 778-6000.

Sharps (From BUSINESSES)

For information and laws regarding disposal of sharps and biomedical waste from your business, contact the Whatcom County Health Department or call (360) 778-6000.


Household Hazardous Waste (HHW)

SSC does not accept any kind of hazardous, toxic, radioactive or dangerous waste(s), ammunition, explosives, dead animals, CFL/Fluorescent lights, old gasoline, asbestos, pesticides, liquid paint, chemicals, or hot ashes.

Note: Hot ashes are a fire hazard and should never be placed in a Toter® or can. Set in a metal can outside and away from buildings, structures, or anything that can ignite. Let cool completely. Place COLD ashes in a bag and dispose of in your garbage.

To dispose of ammunition or explosives (old boat flares, fireworks, etc.), contact the Washington State Patrol (Bellingham office) at 360-676-2007 or the Bellingham Police Department at 360-778-8800.

Household hazardous wastes should not be thrown in the garbage. Click the links below for recycling/disposal options. Examples of some types of common household hazardous waste include:

Disposal and/or recycling options for many other products can be found here.

To dispose of household hazardous wastes, please contact the Disposal of Toxics program at (360) 380-4640. Disposal of Toxics accepts a variety of household hazardous wastes from Whatcom County residents.

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