Circulation is a library term that refers to checking out library materials and renewing or returning what you have borrowed from the library. This page gives general information about circulation at the Idaho Falls Public Library.

The information on this page is governed by our circulation policy.

Page content:

Borrowing Limits

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Library patrons may check out a total of 50 items at a time (the limit on DVDs and Blu-Ray is 10). This applies to regular (resident), junior, nonresident, property owner, and military cards.

Temporary borrowers may only check out 2 items at a time.

Borrowing Periods

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Most items at the library can be borrowed for 3 weeks. Exceptions include:

  • DVDs and blu-rays: 1 week
  • Quick reads: 1 week*
  • New fiction: 2 weeks
  • Interlibrary loans: 2 weeks
  • Book club sets: 6 weeks*

*One-time checkout that cannot be renewed.


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The Idaho Falls Public Library charges fees for lost or damaged items.

The library does not charge late fines, but does suspend borrowing until overdue materials are renewed or returned.

Patrons may view account charges by signing in to their library accounts and clicking on the Fines tab. Fees may be paid in person at our second-floor service desk in Idaho Falls or at one of the branch staff desks in Iona or Swan Valley.

Hold Requests

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If you’ve placed a hold on an item, but it is not yet ready for checkout, we call this a request. If an item has been sent to the hold shelf to wait for you to check it out, we call this a hold. When you sign into your library account, requests will show a pending status and holds will have a pickup deadline.

Notice: During the COVID-19 pandemic, the library is quarantining all returned items for 7 days. This means that, when something you’ve requested is returned, it will trigger an automated hold notice and show as being on hold in your account but won’t actually be available for checkout for another week. If your request has already passed through quarantine (i.e., sitting on the shelf), it will be available immediately. The library has temporarily adjusted hold pickup time frames to accommodate the quarantine.

Updated Oct 1, 2020 — Changes to internal library processes now permit us to send hold notices on the day your holds can be checked out. Your holds will have already passed through quarantine and will be available on the hold shelf when you receive the notice. You will have 7 business days to check them out.

Request an Item

To request something currently checked out to another patron, search for the item in our online catalog and click the “Place Hold” button. You may also call 208-612-8460 or visit any library service desk to request help placing a hold.

Edit, Suspend or Cancel a Request

To cancel a request, sign into your library account and open the Holds tab. Select the requests you wish to cancel and click the Cancel Holds button. To suspend a request, use the Suspend Holds button and to change the pick up location for a request, use the Edit Pickup Location button. Once a request has been fulfilled as an active hold, please note that it can only be edited or canceled by calling the library.

Pick Up a Hold

Patrons in Idaho Falls may pick up holds near our second-floor service desk. Patrons in Iona and Swan Valley may pick up holds at the staff desks inside each branch library.

Holds are kept on the hold shelf for at least 7 days. To see when your hold will expire, sign into your account, open the Holds tab, and note the pickup deadline.


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To enable courtesy notifications for upcoming due dates, overdue reminders, or holds that are ready to be checked out, use our online support form or visit any library service desk. Notification options include:

  • Automated phone calls
  • SMS text messages
  • Email notifications
  • Phone calls + email
  • SMS text + email

Notifications are optional and are provided as a courtesy service only.


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Patrons may renew most library items up to 3 times after the original checkout. Quick read books, book club sets, and items with requests cannot be renewed. Expired library cards may also prevent renewals.

To renew your library checkouts:


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To return your library checkouts, use one of our book returns:

Idaho Falls

  • Inside book return on the first floor
  • Inside book bin on the second floor
  • Drive-through book return on the east side of the library*
  • Outside book return by the north doors (facing Broadway St)*


  • Inside book return at the end of the staff desk
  • Outside book return by the library entrance*

Swan Valley

  • Return books to the staff desk
  • Outside book return across from the library entrance*

*Available after hours

For more information about library cards, including how to renew an expired card or troubleshoot login errors, visit our library cards page.