COVID-19 Reopening FAQs

Using the Library | Facilities | Returns | Holds | Checking Out Materials | Fines & Fees | Computers | Services | Events | Support the Library

USING THE LIBRARY

What can I expect when I visit the library?

  • We are happy to welcome you back to Wheaton Public Library!
  • At this time, we’re offering limited services to reduce contact and close interactions to help slow the spread of COVID-19.
  • Only WPL cardholders can check out materials. New library card registration will be available.
  • WPL will be providing Virtual Library service, Curbside Pickup service and Grab & Go service. Virtual Library service includes all programming and reference services. Curbside Pickup service includes material pickups on library curbside and Grab & Go service includes 30-minute browsing and computer use inside the building.
  • There will be limits on the number of people allowed in the library.
  • Patron conduct rules will be enforced and determined by each of the Illinois Reopening Plan phases.
  • Please continue to use WPL eBook and eAudiobook collections, online resources and more via the library’s website
  • Reach out to us by phone, email or our website so we can better serve you.
  • The safety and health of all visitors and staff is our priority. Thank you for following these guidelines and for your patience and flexibility as we move through this time together.

FACILITIES

What are the hours that the building will be open?
WPL currently has reduced hours to allow extra time for disinfection and cleaning of spaces each day. Please check the library's website as they may change as the COVID-19 restrictions change.

Grab & Go and Curbside Pickup Hours:
Monday – Thursday: 11:00 AM – 7:00 PM
Friday: 11:00 AM – 5:00 PM
Saturday: 9:00 AM – 1:00 PM

What measures is WPL taking to keep patrons safe?
We are taking a number of precautions to limit personal contact and follow social distancing guidelines:

  • Limiting the number of patrons based on square footage
  • Asking you to limit your time in the library to 30 minutes to allow others the opportunity to use our resources given our capacity limits
  • Reducing our hours to ensure staff have sufficient time for enhanced cleaning
  • Removing seating and asking patrons not to congregate
  • Reducing the number of computers
  • Providing distance and traffic markers
  • Requiring staff to wear masks
  • Requiring all visitors over age 2 to wear masks that cover nose and mouth
  • Using Plexiglass shields at selected service points
  • Advising staff to limit interactions to fewer than 10 minutes
  • Quarantining returned library materials
  • Increasing frequency of cleaning high-touch areas
  • Providing hand-sanitizing in high computer use areas and encouraging frequent hand washing

Please help us keep our staff and others safe by:

  • Staying home if you’re experiencing symptoms of any illness per CDC guidelines
  • Wearing a mask, required for all patrons over age 2, to cover your nose and mouth
  • Washing or sanitizing your hands frequently
  • Maintaining at least six feet of distance from staff and other patrons
  • Respecting social distancing guidelines and keeping your visit as short as possible
  • Following the instructions of library staff
  • Minimize the number of family members visiting the library with you

Is there a limit on the number of patrons allowed in the library?
Yes. You may be asked to wait in line until we have space for additional patrons. While in line, please follow social distancing guidelines and keep six feet between you and other patrons. A staff member will let you know when you may enter the library.

Are there any limitations on what and where I can browse?
Shelves on the lower level (Youth) Tween area, main floor and 2nd floor are open. The Early Childhood Center is closed and staff will retrieve materials as needed. Browsing areas are set up for the picture book collection. Please follow traffic markers to reduce person-to-person contact. Magazines are available for checkout only. Newspapers are not available for browsing or checkout. Please reach out to us via phone, email or through our website whenever possible to help us to serve you better.

Is Café on the Park open?
Yes, Café on the Park is open, please visit cafeontheparkwheaton.com for hours. Patrons will not be able to access the café from within the library. The West entrance door will also be locked.

Can I book a Meeting Room or Study Room?
No. All meeting rooms and study rooms are closed.

What if I don’t feel comfortable coming into the library at this time?
If you already have materials checked out, you may continue to enjoy them. Items without holds will be automatically renewed up to 4 times. We’ve extended library card renewal dates for Wheaton residents so your card will not expire during this time. You may continue to use the Curbside Pickup service; please note some of our Curbside Pickup procedures have changed. If you need a library card, please complete our online form for a temporary card which will give you access to eContent and online resources.

RETURNS

How do I return materials to the library?
We ask that you return materials anytime in the outside book returns, located on the southeast side of the building. Inside book returns are open when the library is open.

Should I clean or disinfect my materials before I return them?
No. Cleaning materials at home may damage them. We will quarantine returned materials before checking them in.

How is WPL cleaning materials before they are returned to the shelves?
We are quarantining returned materials for the recommended time period before checking items in. For this reason, materials will remain on your account for up to a week after you return them.

HOLDS

What if I don’t want my Held item anymore?
Please review the items you have requested and cancel any “Active” or “Pending” requests on items you no longer wish to check out. If a request is ready for you to pick up but you no longer wish to check it out, no action is required. We will remove it from the hold shelf once it expires.

How long is a Held item kept for me?
Held items are kept for five days. To see when your Held items expire, please log into My Account and go to Requests or give us a call. We’re unable to extend the amount of time of an individual Held item; this ensures everyone receives their requests in a timely manner.

Will requests take longer during this time?
As we are quarantining returned materials for 3 days before checking items in, there will be delays in delivering requested materials to the next patron.

May someone else pick up my Held items for me?
Yes. If a family member or friend is available to pick up your held items, they can do so in one of two ways. You can give them your library card to check out your materials. Or, you can tell us they will pick up your materials at Curbside Pickup.

Can I suspend a request?
Yes, you can suspend a request that is not Held. While your request is suspended, you will continue to move ahead on the waiting list, but the request will not be Held while it is suspended. Use this option to manage your requests when you are away or don't have time to read. To suspend a request, log in to My Account and go to Requests.

CHECKING OUT MATERIALS

Does WPL offer self-checkout for materials?
Yes, and we ask that you use our self-checkout stations to help us minimize close interactions during this time. To use self-checkout, you’ll need to scan your library card or key in your library card number. You’ll also need to enter your PIN; this is the same number you use to log into My Account on our website. Please use hand sanitizer before and after using the self-checkout stations. Hand sanitizer will be provided. As always, please ask for help if you need it.

Does WPL offer electronic receipts?
Yes. To sign up for electronic receipts, login to My Account. Go to My Record, then Contact Information and Preferences. Verify your email and set your preferences for receiving notices and E-receipts. Using electronic receipts helps reduce contact while you’re at the library.

FINES AND FEES

Will Fines be charged?
Due to the quarantine of materials, we will not charge fines until further notice.

COMPUTERS

Can I use the computers in the library?
Yes, but we have reduced the number of computers to increase the space between workstations. Public computers are only available in the Tech Center. To ensure equal access, we are limiting visitors to 30 minutes for computer use. Computer sessions are first come, first served. To reduce contact, printing will be allowed, however, only cash denominations up to $5 are allowed. Staff will not be able to make change.

SERVICES

Can I get a library card?
Yes, if you live within incorporated Wheaton you may register for a WPL card. If you live outside of city limits but within District 200, you may purchase a family card or sign up for a temporary card which allows you to utilize eContent and WPL’s online resources. You may register for a temporary card on our website.

Can I get help with eBooks and eAudiobooks?
Yes. You can call, email or chat with a Reference Librarian. Brief in-person assistance may be provided depending on staff availability.

What services will NOT be available?
The following services will NOT be available in Grab & Go service:

  • Early Childhood Area (including all children’s toys)
  • Meeting Rooms and Study Rooms
  • Notary
  • ILL/LINKin
  • Microfilm Readers
  • VHS to DVD conversion
  • Photo scanner
  • Laptop checkouts
  • Headphone lending

EVENTS

Is WPL still offering programs?
Yes. All programs are being held virtually. Please visit our online calendar for our schedule of Virtual Programming for all ages.

SUPPORT THE LIBRARY

How can I support WPL during this time?
Thank you for considering a gift to Wheaton Public Library. As always, you may make donations through the Wheaton Public Library Endowment Fund. Please visit Support Us for more information.