Bulk Waste FAQ

General questions

When is my next scheduled collection date?

Twice-yearly suburb-wide bulk waste collections were phased out in March 2012 and replaced with an on-demand service.

Instead of waiting for a scheduled collection in your neighbourhood, you can fill out our bulk waste service request form or call 02 4974 2000 and we will book a time to collect bulk waste from your kerbside. Alternatively, you can request a voucher to take your household bulk waste to Summerhill Waste Management Centre.

The service change was made to provide flexibility and reduce waiting times for residents wanting to dispose of their bulk waste, improve street amenity, deliver cost savings, reduce healthy and safety risks associated with scavenging, and give Council the opportunity to recover recyclable materials from the waste stream.

How many bulk waste services can I have?

Each rateable residential property is entitled to two services within any 12-month period.

For example, if you book a service in March 2016 and again in September 2016, you will be entitled to another service from March 2017.

You can mix and match your service to have either two kerbside collections, two self-haul vouchers, or one of each option, within the 12-month period. It’s all up to you!

Can I book a service if I'm renting?

Yes. You can request a kerbside collection or a self-haul voucher by completing our bulk waste service request form or calling 02 4974 2000. Self-haul vouchers will be posted directly to the property address for which they are requested.

Please note: Tenants were previously required to arrange a bulk waste service through the property owner/managing agent. The change to booking arrangement was introduced following a Council resolution in 2015 to make the service more accessible to all Newcastle residents regardless of their occupancy status.

When I book a service what information will I need to provide?

You will be asked some questions by our team members, such as:

  • Do you live in a multi-unit dwelling? If so, you will be advised to ask your strata manager/body corporate to contact Council to organise a joint kerbside collection for the entire complex. The managing body will then be responsible for notifying all residents within the multi-unit dwelling of their scheduled collection date.
  • Do you live in a social housing (Housing NSW) residence? If you live in a single dwelling, we will check that it is residentially rated to confirm its eligibility for a bulk waste service. If you live in a multi-unit dwelling, you will be advised to contact your Housing NSW liaison officer to find out your next scheduled kerbside collection date.
  • What will you put out? We need to understand the types of items you plan to put out. You won’t be limited to what you advise us at the time of booking, but we need an idea of whether it is going to be large items, whitegoods*, furniture etc, so we know what size truck and the number of staff to send to collect it. *Please note: fridges/freezers are not permitted through the kerbside collection service, but may be disposed of via the self-haul voucher option.
  • Where are you going to put your bulk waste for collection? Bulk waste needs to be placed in front of your property unless you tell us otherwise. If you present your bulk waste in a lane, our collection staff will not know to look for it there unless you advise us at the time of booking. We may also not be able to manoeuvre large vehicles down laneways or streets that are normally serviced by smaller vehicles. If you let us know your bulk waste will be placed in a narrow street/lane/cul-de-sac, we will know to send a smaller collection truck.

Kerbside collection service

When will the bulk waste be collected from my property?

We will let you know what date your bulk waste collection will take place at the time of booking. The collection will be scheduled for the next available date on the day after your regular kerbside general waste collection. For example, if your red-lid bin is serviced on a Monday, your bulk waste collection will be scheduled for the first available Tuesday.

We aim to schedule collections as quick as possible. If you request a bulk waste collection during a period of high demand, however, there may be a four week waiting period. This period may be longer around holiday periods, especially Christmas, therefore we encourage you to book well in advance.

You can request a voucher to take your waste to Summerhill Waste Management Centre in lieu of a kerbside collection. All vouchers are sent by mail - please allow three to five working days. Collection of vouchers from Council offices or distribution by email is not permitted.

Once I have booked a collection, when do I put out my bulk waste?

Bulk waste may be presented no sooner than one day before, and no later than 5.30am on the day that your collection has been scheduled. If you present your bulk waste sooner than this you may be fined for illegal dumping.

All collections will be scheduled for the first available weekday after your regular general waste service. For example, if your red-lid bin is serviced on a Monday, you will be asked to put your bulk waste out ready for the Tuesday morning. If your red-lid bin is serviced on a Friday, put your bulk waste out ready for collection on the Monday.

My bulk waste was not picked up on my scheduled collection date. What should I do now?

While Waste Services endeavours to provide all bulk waste services on the day that they have been scheduled, on rare occasions your service may be delayed due to unforeseen circumstances, such as inclement weather, mechanical problems or traffic/access issues encountered throughout the day.

If your bulk waste has not been picked up on your scheduled collection day, please leave it on the kerb. If it has not been collected within 48 hours of your scheduled date, please notify us on 4974 6066.

My neighbours have dumped some extra items on my pile and it didn’t get collected, what do I do with it?

It is your responsibility to ensure that only two cubic metres (the equivalent of a 6'x4' trailer loaded under one metre high) of bulk waste is presented for collection. Placing your bulk waste out no sooner than one day before your scheduled collection day will help prevent people from dumping items on your property. Uncollected items will need to be removed or disposed of by the resident.

I would rather take bulk waste to the tip myself. Can I do this?

Yes. You can request a self-haul voucher to dispose of your bulk waste at Summerhill Waste Management Centre instead of having a kerbside collection. Just fill out our bulk waste service request form or call 02 4974 2000, to request for a voucher be mailed to you.

Self-haul vouchers

If I get sent a voucher, how long have I got to use it?

Vouchers expire three months from the date that they are issued, to provide sufficient time to receive and use your voucher. Please allow three to five working days to receive your voucher in the mail.

If the voucher is not used by the expiry date, the bulk waste entitlement for the property to which it is issued will be forfeited.

If I get sent a voucher, do I have to take my bulk waste to Summerhill myself?

Yes. You must present the voucher upon entry at the weighbridge , together with proof of occupancy (e.g. driver licence) that demonstrates that you reside at the property address printed on the voucher. A recent utility bill or rates notice may be used as proof of occupancy providing the mailing address on the bill/notice matches the property address printed on the voucher. The conditions of use are stated on the voucher.

How much bulk waste can I dispose of with a voucher?

The same quantities apply as for a kerbside collection. Up to two cubic metres can be presented per voucher. Bulk waste must be transported in a passenger vehicle (sedan/station wagon), utility, van or a trailer equivalent to a 1.8m x 1.2m (6'x4') trailer loaded just under one metre high. If using a trailer, "hungry boards" or cages must not be attached. If larger loads or items are presented, additional fees and charges will apply. See the acceptable materials on the Bulk Waste Service page.

Can I use more than one voucher at a time?

Yes. You can combine two self-haul vouchers providing they are issued to the same property address. You must present proof of occupancy (e.g. driver licence) for the address printed on the vouchers.

What happens if I bring more than the acceptable allowance to Summerhill?

If you bring in more than two cubic metres of bulk waste with your voucher, you will be charged regular tipping fees for the excess amount.

What happens if I bring items to Summerhill that are not permitted using the self-haul voucher?

If you have restricted items in your load (e.g. commercial waste), you will be charged the relevant disposal fees for those items. Items not permitted under Summerhill's licensing arrangements (e.g. household chemicals) will not be accepted under any circumstances.

Can I use a voucher for green waste?

Yes. Up to two cubic metres of bulk waste (including green waste) can be presented in total.

Please note: Green waste is not accepted via the kerbside bulk waste collection, with the exception of tree branches up to 100mm (10cm) in diameter. Your kerbside green waste (green-lid) bin can be used to dispose of leaves, grass clippings, weeds and small prunings.

Can I use the voucher to dispose of asbestos?

You may use your self-haul voucher to dispose of up to 100kg of asbestos waste only. No other types of waste can be brought in if you choose this option. Normal charges will apply for quantities of asbestos above 100kg.

Strict conditions apply to the disposal of asbestos waste. Once you receive your self-haul voucher, you must pre-book asbestos waste 24 hours prior to disposal on 02 4985 6600. Bookings can be made on weekdays between 8.30am and 4pm.

Please note: asbestos is not accepted via the kerbside bulk waste collection. Fines apply.

I have lost my voucher. Can I get a replacement?

Replacement vouchers will not be issued under any circumstances. If you did not receive your voucher via the post, you must advise us within 14 days of the voucher request.