Cart Exchange

The City of Nanaimo has released the COVID-19 Recovery Plan, which can be found on the COVID-19 informational pageClick here for Garbage/Recycling Information on COVID-19.  


How to Submit a Cart Exchange Request

Step 1: Read the Cart Exchange FAQs

  • Please note Cart Exchange Requests must be submitted by the property owner with verification of the utility billing account number.
  • If you have further questions, please contact us at or call 250-758-5222.

Step 2: Submit your Cart Exchange Request form

  • Option A) Printable Cart Exchange Request Form
    • The printable form and $25 Administration Fee payment can be submitted via:
      • In-person at the Service and Resource Centre, 411 Dunsmuir Street. 
        For information on the re-opening of in-person services at the Service and Resource Centre, please review the COVID-19 Recovery Plan.
      • Mail with a Cheque to:

        City of Nanaimo
        455 Wallace Street
        Nanaimo BC V9R 5J6

    • Click here to access the Printable Cart Exchange Request Form 
  • Option B) Online Cart Exchange Request Form - Version for standard upsize requests
  • Option C) Online Cart Exchange Request Form - Version for other requests
    • Applicable if you have a:
      • Single Family Dwelling - requesting a smaller cart.
      • Home with a Suite - requesting a split cart set or any change not listed in Option B.
      • Duplex, Triplex, Fourplex or any other property type.
    • Click here to email the Cart Requests team - we will email you a direct link to the form with instructions to enter for your request.

Step 3: Pay the $25 Administration Fee

  • Option A) In-Person Payment
    • This option is not currently available, due to ongoing closures of in-person services at the Service and Resource Centre and the Public Works building.  Please review the COVID-19 Recovery Plan for more information.
  • Option B) Online Payment
    • You will be provided the link to the payment portal upon approval of your cart exchange request.
    • The online payment portal accepts Visa and Mastercard.

Cart exchange requests are subject to approval.  Please be advised the current user rates may be subject to change upon bylaw revision, click here to access the Municipal Solid Waste Collection Bylaw 2011 No. 7128.

Cart Delivery Information

After approval and receiving the administration fee, your address will be put into queue for cart delivery (or exchange).  Your cart(s) will be delivered and geolocated to your property.  Please allow up to four to six weeks for delivery.

Until your carts are delivered, please leave your current cart(s) in a location that is visible and accessible from the road.  Continue to use your cart(s) normally and set out on your scheduled collection days.  You may receive a cart that has been gently used. 

Cart Exchange FAQs:

How do I confirm the size of the carts I am currently using?

A nine digit serial number is stamped on the front of each of your carts, and the first number represents the volume.  If your serial number begins with the number:

  • 3 - your cart is 120 litres
  • 6 - your cart is 240 litres
  • 9 - your cart is 360 litres

Can I exchange my Green Cart for organics?

At this time, no upsize options are offered for the Green Cart.  An 120 litre capacity is assigned per dwelling unit, and homes with suites are provided with a shared upsized 240 litre organics cart.

I live in a single family dwelling, what are my cart exchange options?

*A smaller 120 litre Blue Cart is available upon request, please contact us at for more information.

I live in a home with a suite and a shared upsize set of carts, what are the cart exchange options?

I own/live in a home with a suite and wish to split my upsized cart set into two sets. How should I proceed?

Please contact us by emailing or calling 250-758-5222.

I own/live in a home with a suite with two sets of carts, and wish to submit a cart exchange request. How should I proceed?

Please contact us by emailing or calling 250-758-5222.

I live in a triplex/fourplex, and wish to submit a cart exchange request. How should I proceed?

Please contact us by emailing or calling 250-758-5222.

What are the dimensions of the Sort Toss Roll carts?

Size (litres) Height (cm) Width (cm) Depth (cm) Weight (kg)
120 95 47 62 10
240 111 68 71 13.5
360 111 74 85 16

My household has too much garbage. What can I do?

Are you certain everything you are sorting into your garbage is truly garbage? Many household items that are not accepted in your carts should be taken to your local recycling drop-off depots.

Check out these facilities and the materials they accept here or download our app and search the “What Goes Where” wizard. Alternatively, read on for options regarding up-sizing your cart.

Are there other cost implications if I increase the size of my carts and what are my up-sizing options?

If you regularly find yourself with excess garbage or recycling, you can up-size your cart for larger ones.  The waste collection fee will increase $100 annually. (This increase covers the costs of tipping the additional waste at the landfill).

A $25 exchange fee will apply.  Please note, if you are renting your home, please contact your landlord to request changes, as all charges will be added to the user fees account.  If this is an occasional issue, read below for tips on how to deal with excess waste.

Please note, the rates and charges for curbside collection service are subject to change upon amendment of Bylaw 7128.

Can I downsize my carts?

Residents living alone may find the standard size (240 litre) recycling cart too big.  You may downsize your recycling cart to the smallest size, which is 120 litres. 

How many times can I change carts?

You may change your cart size once per year.

If I move into a newly built home, how do I get a garbage cart?

Once you have received “occupancy” for your new property, you will receive new carts.  Please contact the Public Works department if you have moved in and need carts.

I am a renter, how can I change my cart size?

All cart exchange requests must be submitted by the property owner, please contact your landlord.

How do I find my User Rates account number?

Your User Rates account number can be found on the top of your Statement of User Rates; see the yellow highlighted box in the image below.

Sample Statement of User Rates, indicating the account number can be found on the top centre of the statement.

Where can I find out more information on User Rates for curbside collection?

For more information on billing, please visit the User Rates page by clicking here.



Nanaimo Recycles 


Contact Us

Public Works Department 250-758-5222

Last updated: October 5, 2020

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