Frequently Asked Questions

Will the library be providing eclipse glasses? If so, at which locations and how many can I get?

Columbus Metropolitan Library will give away eclipse glasses on a first-come, first-served basis beginning Monday, March 18, at all 23 of our locations.

  • There is a maximum of 4 glasses per person so we can have them available for as many customers as possible.
  • Glasses are reserved for individuals only, not larger groups.
  • Coming Soon: Check out our Eclipse page and Events page for eclipse-related programs happening throughout March.
How do I return my items?

You may return items inside our locations during open hours or through our exterior Returns that are open 24/7. Visit our Locations page for addresses.

How do I register for a card?

Ohio residents may apply for a library card online or in person. If applying online apply for a library card , a card number will be generated and can be used immediately to access digital materials and reserve items.

If applying in person, a physical card will be provided during the application process.

Can I use my CML library card at other libraries in central Ohio?

Yes, you can use your library card to check out materials and access services at libraries throughout central Ohio without having multiple library cards.

Participating libraries include:

  • Bexley Public Library
  • Columbus Metropolitan Library
  • Delaware County District Library
  • Fairfield County District Library
  • Grandview Heights Public Library
  • Granville Public Library
  • Marysville Public Library
  • Pickaway County Library
  • Pickerington Public Library
  • Plain City Public Library
  • Southwest Public Libraries
  • Upper Arlington Public Library
  • Wagnalls Memorial Library
  • Worthington Libraries

Services and programs vary, so check with each library before you go.

What are the loan periods, borrowing limits and fines for materials?

Loan periods:

  • Books: 21 days
  • Magazines and other print materials: 7 days
  • DVDs and Blu-rays: 14 days
  • Audiobooks: 21 days
  • Music: 14 days
  • Video games: 7 days

Borrowing limits:

  • Books, magazines and other print materials: 50 items combined
  • DVDs and Blu-rays: 20 items
  • Audiobooks and music: 30 items combined
  • Video games: 2 items

Fines on materials: CML no longer charges fines for overdue materials, but there are still charges for lost or damaged materials.

How do I pay for lost or damaged materials?

You can pay fees the following ways:

  • At any library location by cash, check, credit or debit card
  • Online with a major credit or debit card: go to My Account and have your library card number and PIN handy
  • By mail (please allow additional time): send check with library card number noted to: Columbus Metropolitan Library, Attention: Circulation, 96 S. Grant Ave., Columbus, OH 43215
What if my card is lost or stolen?

Please visit any library location for a replacement card or contact us to have your card blocked. You are responsible for all items checked out on your card, so please report any issues as soon as possible. There is no charge for replacing your card.

What if I don’t know my card number or PIN or need to change my contact information?

Please visit any library location or Contact Us.

Library Card PINs are 4 digits long. The PIN defaults to the last 4 numbers of the phone number associated with your account. You may have also opted to reset your PIN to a 4-digit number of your choosing. If you have registered for an account through our website, you can use the Forgot your PIN? link to be emailed a link to reset it.

Staff at any location can update your contact information when you show your picture ID.  Contact Us if your library card number is available.

What are the libraries’ hours?

Hours vary between locations. Visit Locations for hours and holiday closings.

How do I find and download eBooks and other digital materials from the library?

Visit eContent for help using our digital materials.

What other services does the library offer?

Visit Library Services for information.

Can I get something notarized at the library?

CML does not provide notary services. We recommend checking with your bank/credit union.

Does the library proctor exams?

CML does not offer exam proctoring services.

How do I book a meeting or study room?

Learn more about the features of our meeting and study rooms, find availability and book online here: Reserve a Room.

You can also view and cancel existing reservations here: Manage Reservations.

For questions, Contact Us.

I applied for an open position, how can I find out the status of my application?

We appreciate your interest in working for the library. We are unable to respond to inquiries about specific applications. If you have technical difficulties applying, please contact us.

Do you accept donated materials?

For the latest information about donations, please visit the Friends of the Library.

Does the library accept volunteers?
Please visit our Volunteer page for more information about volunteering.
Can the library give me discarded magazines/newspapers?

Due to the volume of newspapers and magazines, and number of requests, the library cannot save these items for individuals. However, you can check with your neighborhood location for possible exceptions.

I’m a local author. How do I get my book added to the library’s collection?

If you would like to donate a copy of your book for consideration for our collection, you may take a copy to any CML location and ask a staff member to send it to our Collection Services Department. You may also mail a copy to: Columbus Metropolitan Library Collection Services, Attention: Selection Team, 400 W. Johnstown Rd., Suite 100, Gahanna, OH 43230. Due to the number of books we receive, items that are not added to the collection will not be returned, but will be donated to the Friends of the Library.

If you do not wish to send a book or would like more information about our criteria, you can email us. If describing your book, please include the title, publisher, ISBN, date of publication and the intended audience for the book, in addition to any other pertinent information.

For author visits, please contact us.

Still need help?

Visit Contact Us for more ways to get the answer you need.