RESIDENT FAQs

1. When does service start and end?

Collection begins at 8:00 p.m., Sunday through Thursday. Valets are instructed to be off the property by midnight.

2. Who is my Tote Away valet?

You’ll know your Tote Away by the Tote Away uniform: light blue shirt, dark blue slacks, and a bright yellow reflective vest with the Tote Away logo on it.

Your Tote Away valet was selected because he or she met the most rigorous standards in the trash valet industry. We conduct extensive background checks and require pre-employment and random drug and alcohol screenings for all Tote Away valets. And we submit your valet’s biography, including background information and drug and alcohol test results to your community’s management company for approval.

Importantly, your valet was trained in both safe operations and safety and security observations. He or she will be on the lookout for any unsafe or suspicious conditions or activities and will report them to your community manager. You can feel safer knowing your Tote Away valet is looking out for you.

3. Why wasn’t my trash collected?

There could be a few reasons.

1. Trash was out after 8:00 p.m. Valets start their service at 8:00 p.m. sharp, so if your trash wasn’t in the container by then, the valet could have missed it.

2. Too many bags. Although we make every effort to pick up all your trash, if there are too many bags, valets might only be able to remove one or two and will have to pick up the rest over the next night or two.

3. The bag was too heavy. For the safety of our valets, bags should weigh no more than 25 pounds. If your trash is heavier than this, please split it among two or three bags. If there are too many bags for the valets to pick up in one night, they will pick up the rest of the bags over subsequent nights.

4. Trash wasn’t bagged and tied securely. Trash is messy. We get it. And we try to minimize your exposure to it by disposing of it for you. But our valets can’t carry loose waste to the dumpster, so it’s important for it to be bagged and tied. Because valets also can’t carry busted or leaking bags, we ask that

5. Boxes weren’t flattened and bundled. Pizza is yummy. We eat a lot of it, too. If you want to dispose of your pizza boxes – or any other boxes, for that matter – we ask that you flatten them completely and leave them behind the storage container. If you have multiple boxes, please flatten and bundle them with tape. As with trash, we ask that you keep the boxes under 25 pounds.

6. Trash was not in the container. Our job is to keep your home clean and tidy, so with the exception of flattened, bundled boxes, all trash needs to be in the container. Valets have no way of knowing if bags or items not in the container are trash, so they are instructed not to remove them. We understand that not all trash will fit in the container with the lid shut, so if you have more than one bag, you may stack it atop the other bag(s) inside the container. Just keep the lid open.

7. You had an item on top of the container. Because we value your belongings, valets are instructed not to move anything sitting on top of the containers.

If none of these reasons applies, we apologize. You can call us directly at 877.237.5123 or email us at service@tote-away.com. We will do everything in our power to remedy the situation.

4. Why did I get a violation?

Tote Away does not issue violations. As part of our agreement with your community, we communicate any breach of waste collection process to management. They decide, based on community standards of cleanliness, whether to issue a violation notice.

5. Why am I getting a fine?

As with violation notices, Tote Away does not issue fines. Community management levies fines based on their standards of cleanliness.

6. What can I put in the trash bag?

Almost anything that fits in the bag and weighs less than 25 pounds. (See “What do I do with boxes?” below) We do request that you not put broken glass, jagged edges, or loose sharps in your bags as these are both more likely to rip the bag and to endanger your valet. We also ask that you to refrain from throwing away anything that is illegal in your municipality or state. For example, it is illegal in most places to discard motor oil, paint, or hazardous liquids.

7. Is there a weight limit on my trash?

Yes, 25 pounds. If you have more than 25 pounds of trash, please divide it up among two or more bags and stack them inside your container. If there are several bags, valets are instructed to pick them up over two or more nights.

8. How big can my bag be?

As long as it’s securely tied, doesn’t leak, and fits inside the container, your bag can be as large or small as it needs to be. If you have too much trash for one bag to fit in the container, divide it among two or more bags. We understand that not all trash will fit in the container with the lid shut, so if you have more than one bag, you may stack it atop the other bag(s) inside the container. Just keep the lid open.

9. I have a lot of trash. How many bags can I put in the container?

You can stack as many as will fit inside the container. If necessary, your valet will split your pick-up over two or more days. We understand that not all trash will fit in the container with the lid shut, so if you have more than one bag, you may stack it atop the other bag(s) inside the container. Just keep the lid open.

10. Do I have to use an actual trash bag?

Nope. You can use any plastic bag as long as it’s securely tied and not leaking.

11. What do I do with boxes?

If you want to dispose of your pizza boxes – or any other boxes, for that matter – we ask that you flatten them completely and leave them behind the storage container. If you have multiple boxes, please flatten and bundle them with tape.

12. Do you collect big items like appliances, furniture, etc.?

No, unfortunately, we cannot dispose of large items like this. For anything besides bagged waste and flattened boxes, you will need to contact your community manager or municipal trash collection service.

13. Do you collect recycling?

Yes! Tote Away values the environment! If your community elects to offer recycling, we will gladly pick it up for you. Rather than a standard garbage bag, we’ll provide you with a blue recycling bag. You put the blue bag in the container with your garbage bag, and we pick it up at the same time. Garbage goes in the dumpster or compactor; recycling goes in a separate recycling bin.

14. What can I put in the recycling bag?

Aluminum cans – please rinse empty cans and throw sharp-rimmed lids into garbage; you can also recycle aluminum foil if it is first rinsed clean of any food.

Cardboard – flatten completely before putting in bag.

Paper – magazines, newspaper (remove from plastic delivery bag), phone books, copier and writing paper.
Plastic containers – only #1 and #2 plastics (see bottom of container for the number); rinse empty plastics and discard tops, lids, or bottle caps.

Steel cans – please rinse empty cans and throw sharp-rimmed lids into garbage.

15. What can I NOT put in the recycling bag?

Pretty much anything NOT included in the acceptable list (above). This includes, among other things, garbage, glass, sharps, any plastic items numbered 3 through 7, Styrofoam, plastic bags, batteries, and electronics.

16. Do I have to separate my recyclables?

Nope. You can just toss them all in the recycling bag. They’ll be separated later.

17. How do I get in touch with you?

You can call us directly at 877.237.5123 or email us at service@tote-away.com.