Proper disposal of wood ashes


Posted on Thursday, February 15, 2018

LAURENTIAN VALLEY - Even though the ashes you’ve cleaned out of your wood stove may look like they’ve cooled off, there is a good chance there may still be some burning embers. Hot ashes will melt green carts, set garbage collection trucks on fire and even cause significant property damage.

To ensure the safe disposal of wood ashes, store them in a METAL container until COOLED. On your regular garbage collection day, place cooled ashes in a combustible container (i.e. box or bag) and place out with regular garbage.

Sue McCrae, General Manager at the Ottawa Valley Waste Recovery Centre explains why cooled ashes must be disposed of as garbage and not in your green cart.

“When the green cart material is brought to the Centre for composting it is dumped inside our processing facility. Ashes generate significant dust and become air borne resulting in possible safety issues related to air quality for our staff.”

McCrae also reminded residents that wood ashes can actually be beneficial for your garden.

“Spreading ashes on top of your garden can raise the pH and lower the acidity of your soil. Just make sure they are only ashes from unpainted wood and your garden is away from any structures.” She also added it’s important to do your research and understand the needs of your soil and plants.

For more information on your waste management programs visit