Gastonia’s Free Excess Household Trash Week Starts Sept. 23

Old sofa with badly torn upholstery

Gastonia residents should circle the week of Sept. 23-27 on their calendars and start cleaning out their attics, spare bedrooms and garages. The City of Gastonia will haul away certain types of excess household trash that week at no charge.

During the Free Excess Household Trash Week, City crews collect bulky items such as furniture and excess trash that won’t fit in a customer’s garbage cart. The City waives its fees of $15 for items up to 100 pounds and $25 for items weighing 100 pounds or more.

Since the twice-a-year free week began in 2013, the City has collected a total of more than 8 million pounds of unwanted items at no charge. “The majority of the eligible items left at the curb during our free week are unwanted furniture and old mattresses,” said City of Gastonia’s Solid Waste Director DeeDee Gillis. “We’ve even hauled away a few old pianos.”

Customers should put eligible household trash at the curb on the evening before their regular pickup day. Gillis said a fee may be charged if large items are put at the curb too early. No yard waste will be collected the week of Sept. 23 so that more City employees can handle the large volume of extra household trash.

Even during the free week, the City will charge a fee for removing these items:

  • Appliances and electronics such as TVs, computers, refrigerators, water heaters, washers and dryers
  • Car and truck tires

The City charges a fee to dispose of appliances, electronics and tires because state law does not allow those items to be placed in landfills. “The City will charge $25 to collect each item with an electrical cord, even during the free week,” Gillis said. Residents who want to know if particular item will be collected at no charge during the free week should call the City’s Solid Waste customer service office at 704-866-6774.

The City of Gastonia does not collect or dispose of:

  • Automobile or engine parts, including batteries
  • Dirt, rocks, bricks, ceramic tile or similar construction debris
  • Liquids, poisons or explosives
  • Paint cans that contain wet paint

Residents must take those items to the Gaston County Landfill for proper disposal.

Year-round, the City does not charge to dispose of paint cans, as long as kitty litter or sand has been added to completely dry the paint and the paint cans fit inside the rollout garbage cart.

During the March 2019 Free Household Trash Week, Gastonia residents set a record by discarding more than 432 tons of trash. All of the excess trash goes to the Gaston County landfill in Dallas. During the free week in March, the City paid $10,579 in landfill disposal fees and more than $6,000 in employee overtime.