Brown recycling bins

Some of our brown recycling bins are splitting and becoming unusable. If your brown bin has split we will deliver a replacement free of charge and collect your damaged bin.

Report a split brown bin

Please leave your damaged brown bin empty and ensure that it is visible from the front of your property. You do not need to leave your damaged bin directly at the kerbside for it to be replaced.

Brown bin delivery times

Unfortunately due to the very high demand for replacement brown bins deliveries are taking longer than we would like. Currently the average waiting time for a replacement brown bin is 5 weeks. Please accept our apologies for the delay.

We carry out deliveries 7 days a week, between 7:00am and 5:00pm.

We are unable to allocate a specific time or date for the delivery of your replacement bin.

Using the recycling service

While you are waiting for your replacement bin you can still use the recycling service. We will accept recycling in alternative containers such as your old recycling box or a hessian/jute bag. Please do not use carrier bags or black bin bags.

You can also collect a supply of clear sacks for your recycling - these are available from your nearest Solihull Connect walk in centre, local library, Bickenhill Household Waste Recycling Centre and some Parish Council offices.

Frequently Asked Questions

Why are the brown bins splitting?

Due to a fault our brown recycling bins are prone to splitting. They can split at the sides, front or back. The splits are not caused due to the bins being mishandled by the collection crews.

Why has the number of brown bins splitting increased?

We don’t know why there has been an increase in the number of bins splitting however plastic is affected by cold weather and last winter we experienced very low temperatures. 

Why is it taking so long to get a replacement bin?

The number of requests for replacement bins has increased significantly since the beginning of June. We have put in place additional delivery crews but the current level of demand means that it will take longer than 20 working days to deliver a replacement bin - the current average waiting time for a replacement bin is 5 weeks. We apologise for this and are working hard to reduce the backlog.

What are you doing to reduce the delivery backlog?

We have increased our delivery teams and are looking at options to further increase the number of deliveries and collections that we can carry out.

Why can't you tell me what day my replacement bin is being delivered?

We have never provided customers with a delivery date for their bins but understand that it is not ideal to have to leave your bins outside your property until we can collect it. We are looking at ways in which we can improve our delivery system to both reduce delivery times and provide a date - but until then, due to the volume of requests, we are unable to provide this.

Why do I need to empty my damaged bin?

We ask that you leave your damaged bins empty for collection. This is because full bins can be difficult for the delivery driver to lift onto the collection vehicle. It also means that he can carry fewer bins in his vehicle as it prevents the bins from being stacked in the vehicle therefore reducing efficiency in deliveries and collections.

Where do I need to leave my damaged bin for collection?

If you have a front garden or drive we will collect your damaged bin from there - to help the delivery crews the bin will need to be visible from the roadside and accessible (i.e. not left behind a parked car).

My neighbour has had their bin delivered but I am still waiting - why is this?

Delivery slots are allocated by postcode but also take into account when a request was received. Your neighbour may have requested their bin several weeks ago - we deal with the oldest requests first. We'll deliver to the same street wherever possible to reduce the need to travel back to the same road on numerous occasions but due to the time intervals between bin requests this is not always possible.

Why are you leaving some brown bins unemptied?

Badly damaged bins have developed large splits or holes that are getting caught on the vehicle lifting mechanism are very difficult to dislodge. We have been trying to dislodge the bins but this is an unsafe practice that cannot continue.

If a bin is badly split and considered likely to get stuck our crews have been asked to log the bin as damaged and regrettably leave it as it cannot be emptied safely.

We will leave a sticker on your bin if we can’t empty it and will automatically order a new bin for you if you haven’t already ordered a replacement.

The crews will also leave a supply of clear sacks for your recycling while you wait for your replacement bin. If you run out of clear sacks you can collect an additional supply from your nearest Solihull Connect walk in centre, local library and Bickenhill Household Waste Recycling Centre.

Removing stickers

Please do not remove your damaged bin sticker once it has been placed on your bin. We use this information to raise a request for a replacement brown bin. If you remove your sticker the crews may re-sticker your bin which will trigger a second request for a replacement bin.

Although we check this information, it takes additional time and could mean that a second bin is delivered in error. This results in a wasted journey and takes up a delivery slot for another householder who is waiting for their replacement bin. Please leave your sticker on your bin.

No clear sacks were left on my damaged bin - will the crew return to deliver them

Unfortunately we will be unable to return to replace missing sacks.

Do I need to wait for my bin to have a sticker on it before I can get a replacement?

No, if your brown bin is split you can order a replacement using our online form.

What am I supposed to do with my recycling if my bin is full?

We'll collect recycling in containers such as woven shopping bags, plastic boxes or clear sacks. You can collect a supply of clear sacks from your nearest Solihull Connect walk in centre or your local library and Bickenhill Household Waste Recycling Centre, we are also looking into whether we can provide clear sacks at other locations. You can also purchase clear sacks from some supermarkets.

I don't have time to collect clear sacks - why can't you deliver them?

We are using all of our available delivery resources to deliver replacement bins and we need to prioritise the replacement of these. If we deliver clear sacks it would take up a delivery slot that we could use to deliver a replacement bin. Some supermarkets sell clear sacks for recycling that are an acceptable alternative recycling container.

I have space in my green/black bin - can I use it for  my recycling?

Unfortunately no - you cannot use your green or black bin for recycling as this would cause confusion for the crews (even if the bin is labelled as containing recycling) as they would not expect recycling to be presented in another bin. Also there is always the risk of refuse or garden waste being included in the bins which could contaminate the load of recycling or vice versa (garden waste being contaminated with recycling).

Can I use a Builders Bag or similar sized bag for my recycling?

Unfortunately a builders bag is too large for the crews to manage - the old white woven sacks that we used to provide had a capacity of 60 litres. The crews can handle bags of this size but anything larger is difficult for them to handle due to the bulk and volume that it can hold.

If all bins are damaged or likely to split why aren't you replacing them all?

We don’t know if all of our brown bins will split. They are under warranty and the manufacturer has to replace all damaged bins, however these are replaced on a like for like basis so when we return a damaged bin we get a new one in return. To replace all of the bins we would need a significant amount of replacement bin stock (we delivered 76,000) and while we don't have the resources to do this we're considering our options.

My bin is full and I cannot empty it - will I still get a replacement?

It is easier for our delivery and collection crews to remove a bin if it is empty which is why we ask for bins to be left empty wherever possible.

Will I get a reduction in my Council Tax due to the issues with brown bins?

No, we are unable to issue a refund or rebate of your Council Tax due to issues with the brown bins and collections. While the waste and recycling service is funded by Council Tax, it is not the only service that the Council Tax funds and Council Tax payments are not service specific.

What happens to the damaged bins?

The damaged bins are collected from our depot and taken to a reprocessing company where they are broken down into their separate parts and are sent for recycling.

Is the problem with brown bins affecting our recycling rate?

No, thanks to your commitment to recycling - we have not seen a reduction in our recycling rates as a result of the problem with the brown bins.

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