The Seattle Public Library

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October 4, 2015

Using the Library

Get Started : Check Out & Return

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Library Locator

Map of Library Locations

Check Out & Return

How many items may I borrow and how long can I keep them?

Check the chart for information on borrowing times and late fees for all borrowers. You may check out 50 items. Your digital book downloads do not count toward this limit.  




Books, magazines, pamphlets, CDs, audiocassettes, albums, videocassettes

21 days


14 days

Interlibrary Loan


Reference loan



Where can I return items I borrow?

Return items to any Library location or book drop.


Book drops at all branches are open 24 hours a day.


Book drops at the Central Library are open the following hours:
Monday - Friday: 6 a.m. - 10 p.m.
Saturday - Sunday: 9:30 a.m. - 6 p.m.


It may take a couple of days for an item to be cleared from your account because of the large volume of returns. Items checked in after the date of return are back dated to avoid late fees. If an item remains on your account for more than a day after return, please speak with checkout staff at your local branch or call Borrower Services at 206-386-4190 during open hours. You may also hand your returns to a staff person at any library location, and ask for a return receipt at that time.



Renewing Library Items


How do I renew items?

Use the Library Catalog

  • Use TeleCirc, the automated phone service at 206-386-9015
  • Call or visit any Library location


You need your Library card and PIN to renew online or through TeleCirc and your Library card to renew by phone or in person.


Can I keep items past the due date?

Most items can be renewed twice if no one is waiting for them. The renewal period is the same length as the original loan period (see chart above.) Note: Interlibrary Loans may not be renewed.


Vacation loans: If you know you will need items for an extended period, ask a librarian for a vacation loan. Note: Vacation loans are not available on items with holds or on Interlibrary Loans.

Child reading


Adult Learning


Child at the Library


Ask a Librarian
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