Placing Holds

About Hold Requests | Placing Holds | Canceling or Pausing Holds | Items Not In Catalog


You can request an item owned by the library if:

  • All copies of the item are checked out.
  • An item you want is not available at your local community library but is owned by another library within the Santa Clara County Library District.
  • A new item has been ordered by the library but is not yet available to be checked out. These items have the status of “On Order” in the web catalog.

Please contact the Information Desk at your Library for assistance or review our Ask a Librarian options.

About Hold Requests

All requests for materials owned by the Santa Clara County Library District are free. Bestseller collections are for browsing purposes and cannot be reserved.

Each full access library card can have up to 12 requests at the same time. Limited Access cards can have up to 3 requests at the same time.

  • When the item you request becomes available, you will be notified and the item will be held for you at the library of your choosing for 1 week.
  • If an item has more than one request, requests will be processed in the order they were placed (that is, “first-come, first-served”). You can see how many requests a particular item has in the search results screen or in the page of information on the item itself.
  • If you try to request an item through the web catalog and receive the message "Unable to place a request on this item. The maximum requests for this item type has been exceeded" it simply means that the item cannot be requested.

Same-Day Pickups

If an item is listed as "In" at your local library and you want to reserve it for pick up on the same day, please call your local library and request staff to pull it from the shelf and hold it for you. Requests made online are not immediately processed, and your hold may be filled by another library before your local library can process your request, leading to a longer wait.


Placing Holds Online

  1. Click on the link for the Library Catalog. Then, please use the search box at the very top of the page.  In fact, this search box is throughout our website, at the top.
  2. Perform search (keyword, title, author, subject) to find the item you are interested in borrowing.
  3. Select the item you are interested in requesting by clicking the Place a Hold button.
  4. Type in your library card number (14 digit number on the back of your card without any spaces) or username and PIN.
  5. Select your Pickup Location.
  6. Click the Confirm button.

Depending on your personal account preference, you will receive a message by phone, email, or mail when the requested item is available for pick up at your selected community library pickup location.


Canceling or Pausing Holds

You can cancel or pause your hold requests if they are not available for pickup. To change the status of a request:

  1. Log in to My Account with your library card or username and PIN.
  2. Click On hold from the left navigation
  3. Check the box of the item to be cancelled or paused.
  4. Click the Cancel or Pause button.

Paused Holds

Paused holds retain their place in the hold queue and continue to move up the list to #1. If the hold has been resumed by the time it reaches #1, then it’s filled as usual. If the hold is still paused when it reaches #1, then it sits unfilled until the hold is resumed. Once resumed, the next available copy fills that request.



Items Not In Catalog

Items not listed in the library catalog cannot be requested. See either the instructions for Interlibrary Loan or the Suggest a Purchase form.

  • Each Interlibrary Loan (ILL) request counts as 1 of your available requests.
  • You can indicate on the Suggest a Purchase form if you are interested in being placed on the reserve list if the library purchases the item. Each item the library buys and reserves for you counts as 1 of your available requests.


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