Read below to find out what we have available for checkout, how long you can keep library material, whether an item is renewable, and any limits.

Click here for the full Circulation Policy, and visit My Account to manage your holds and renewals through the SWAN Catalog.


As of September 1, 2021 the Library is Fine Free!

Illustration of bookshelf with the words "The Library is now... FINE FREE!"In March 2020 we went temporarily fine free to help ease the strain of the pandemic. For obvious reasons this was a popular decision, so we are very excited to announce that we have decided to go fine free permanently starting September 1, 2021!

Why is the Library going fine free?

We have been working to increase access to our community members, and to identify and reduce barriers that exist in our services. Over the past few years we have limited overdue fines to the cost of the item, reduced the daily overdue fine amount on AV materials, and increased the total fine amount that accounts become blocked. After careful consideration and with feedback from many of our neighboring libraries who are already fine-free, we felt the next step is to eliminate overdue fines permanently!

What does being fine free mean?

Fine-free means that if you return an item after the due date, we will NOT apply any overdue fines to your account.  This only applies to material that you checked out in-person at the Elmwood Park Public Library.

Does this mean I can keep my checkouts forever?

No, you should return library materials in a timely manner so your neighbors can use them, too!  Most items will automatically renew up to two times if there are no holds.  But after an item is 21 days overdue, your library account will be blocked from further use until you either return the item in good condition or pay for the lost item. 

So think of the Library being fine free as us giving you an extended grace period. We still want you to return items on time, but don't want you to have to worry about, or be penalized for, returning items a few days late.

Why do I still have a bill on my account?  Fines vs. Fees

A FINE is a daily accrual of money owed to the library for items being overdue.

A FEE is an amount of money billed to your account for lost, damaged, or unreturned library material.

So, we are forgiving all past overdue fines, and removing future overdue fines, but we are NOT waiving fees for lost or damaged items.  Therefore, if an item is not returned, is lost, or too damaged to be used by others, the cost of the item will be billed to your account.

I still see overdue fines on my account. Why?

You can still accrue overdue fines on items that you check out at other libraries within SWAN that are not fine free. Our fine free announcement only means that you will not accrue overdue fines on items checked out at Elmwood Park Public Library.

How do I pay off any fines or fees?

You can pay off fees at the Library with cash or credit card. You can also log in to My Account online to pay your fees with a credit card.  (this feature not yet available in our upgraded catalog)


Main Collections - Loan Periods, Limits, & Renewals

Libraries are more than just books!  Check out these other popular collections:

ItemLoan PeriodLimitRenewable?
Books 3 weeks None Yes - Up to 2 times1
Magazines2 3 weeks None Yes - Up to 2 times1
CDs & Audiobooks 3 weeks None Yes - Up to 2 times1
DVDs & Blu-rays 3 weeks None Yes - Up to 2 times1
"HITS" DVDs3 3 weeks None No
Video Games & NEW Video Games 3 weeks 5 Yes - Up to 2 times1

1Items will automatically renew 2 days before the due date, as long as there are no holds on that title, and as long as you have not already reached the maximum number of renewals.  To check the due dates of your checked out items, or to manually renew items, you can call 708.453.7645, visit the Library in person, or log in to My Account online.

2Back issues only. Magazines with NEW stickers cannot be checked out.

3HITS DVDs and eReaders can only be checked out by Elmwood Park residents.


Special Collections - Loan Periods, Limits, & Renewals

We are always trying to add new and fun things for people to check out and try.

ItemLoan PeriodLimitRenewable?
Bicycle Locks4 1 day 3 No
Phone Chargers4 1 day 1 No
Laptops (In-House)4,5 2 hours 1 No
Explore-to-Go Kits 3 weeks None Yes - Up to 2 times1
Vacation Bags Negotiable 1 No
Video Game Consoles:  Nintendo Switch, DS, PS 4 Pro 3 weeks 1 Yes - Up to 2 times1
Video Game Consoles:  PS VR Headset5 3 weeks 1 Yes - Up to 2 times1  
Beyond Books:  Most items 3 weeks None Yes - Up to 2 times1
Beyond BooksChromebook Laptops5 3 weeks 1 Yes - Up to 2 times1
Beyond Books:  WiFi Hotspots 3 weeks 1 Yes - Up to 2 times1
Beyond Books:  Roku Streaming Stick+5 3 weeks 1 Yes - Up to 2 times1
Beyond BooksPortable DVD Players 3 weeks 1 Yes - Up to 2 times1

4These items can only be checked out and used within the Library.

5These items can only be checked out by Elmwood Park residents ages 18 and older.


Notifications by Text or Email

text email alert2 250wFor your convenience, you can get automatic notifications about due dates, renewals, overdue items, and when holds are ready for pickup. 

Email - Log in to My Account and under the Account Settings > Contact Information, you can enter/update your email address.

Text - Log in to My Account and under the Account Settings > Text Message Settings, you can add a phone number to set up text messaging and the notifications you'd like to receive.  Then you will get text notifications instead of emails.