Frequently Asked Questions About PINES
The answers to most of the questions that the PINES staff receive are listed on this page. If you have a question about a fine or an item listed on your account, please Contact Your Local Library.
If you have a question that is not answered here, then please contact us using our Contact Form.
The PINES Catalog
- Help using the PINES Catalog
- Does PINES lend e-books or downloadable audiobooks?
- Who do I contact to request that a library purchases a book for its collection?
- Is there a mobile app for the catalog?
Your PINES Card
- How can I get a PINES card?
- Where can I use my PINES card?
- Can I get a PINES card if I live in a non-PINES county?
- Can I get a PINES card if I live outside of Georgia?
- What do I do if I've lost my PINES card?
- Can I get a PINES card for my child?
- Do I need to have my PINES card with me to check out a book?
Your Account Status
- I have a question about fines on my account. Who do I contact?
- I turned in a book but it is still showing on my account. Who do I contact?
- I can't renew a book I have checked out. Why not?
- I do not know the password/PIN to my PINES account. How do I get it?
- How do I get an online PINES account?
- Is there a limit on the items I can have out at one time?
- Can I get a list of items that I've checked out in the past?
- I'm getting a message that my card has expired. How can I renew it?
- I see a blank screen when I click on My Account. Why?
Placing Items on Hold
- Why am I not able to place certain books on hold even though the system says they are available for check out?
- Why can't I place holds on audio/visual items (such as DVDs, music CDs, or audiobooks) that are not owned by my library system?
- Is there limit on the number hold requests I can have placed at one time?
- How do I place holds on specific volumes of a multi-part series of books or DVDs?
- I have a problem with a PINES library policy. To whom do I direct my comments, questions, and/or suggestions?
The PINES Catalog
PINES does not lend e-books or downloadable audiobooks, but many individual PINES library systems do. Please click here for more information about these services or contact your local library to find out what they are able to offer you and how you can access it.
Each library system that is a member of the PINES network of libraries makes its own purchasing decisions. Please contact your local library if you wish to request that a particular book be purchased. Contact information for all of the PINES libraries is available here.
Your PINES Card
Library cards are free to all residents of Georgia. To sign up for a library card, go into any participating PINES library. You will be asked to fill out an application form and to present identification. Original documents are required, photocopies are not acceptable. Acceptable ID for receiving a PINES card include:
a) photo ID showing current local address, OR
b) photo ID and one item from approved list (see below) showing current, local address (if photoID does not have correct address), OR
c) TWO (2) items from approved list (see below) showing current, local address.
Approved list includes:
- valid driver’s license
- valid voter registration card
- valid matricula consular
- checks with pre-printed addresses
- a utility bill
- tax receipt or other piece of mail that shows the user’s name and present address.
By signing the library card application form, you are accepting full responsibility for all fines and fees including late fines, and fees for lost or damaged materials.
You may use your PINES card at more than 275 libraries and affiliated service outlets in 53 library systems covering 144 counties throughout Georgia. There are several counties (for example, Fulton County) that do not participate in the PINES network but have their own independent library systems. If you are a resident of one of these areas, you may still obtain and use a PINES card, but you will have to travel to a participating PINES library to do so.
Library cards are free to all residents of Georgia. Persons who attend school, own property or are employed full-time in Georgia are eligible for a free PINES card. Patrons of both PINES and non-participating Georgia public libraries may receive a PINES card. Users from non-participating Georgia libraries have the same privileges as PINES users. Most PINES cards are valid for 2 years. Please visit your nearest PINES library facility with a picture ID and proof of address (or proof of employment, school enrollment, or property ownership as appropriate).
If you live in another state but attend school, own property, or are employed full-time in Georgia, you are eligible for a PINES card at no charge. Property owners who do not reside in Georgia are required to show proof of Georgia propertyownership, such as a tax bill or deed. Non-Georgia residents who are employed in Georgia or attending school in Georgia arerequired to show proof of that employment or enrollment.
If you live in another state but do not meet one of the above criteria, you may get a PINES library card that is valid for one year for a $25 fee. Temporary residents of Georgia are eligible for a 6-month library card for $12.50. If neither of these options is appropriate, PINES library materials may be borrowed via your local library's Interlibrary Loan service - please contact your local library for details.
You are responsible for any items checked out on your card, so if you lose it or it is stolen, please report it to your local PINES library immediately. The library staff will be able to block your card so that if someone else finds your card, they will not be able to use it. To request a replacement card, visit a PINES library in person with your proof of ID. You will be required to pay a $2 card replacement fee. You will receive a new card with a different card number and your old card will remain deactivated. Any outstanding fines and fees, as well as records of currently checked out or overdue items will be automatically associated with your new card number.
There is no minimum age for a child to receive a PINES card. The process is the same as it is for obtaining an adult card, except a parent or legal guardian's proper identification will be used. The parent or guardian who signs the application form accepts full responsibility for all late fines or fees for lost or damaged materials.
It is PINES policy that you must have your card with you in order to check out a book. As of July 1, 2014, PINES libraries will accept facsimiles of library card barcodes stored on mobile devices through apps such as Key Ring or CardStar. You will be asked to show ID or confirm your identity if presenting a barcode on a mobile device. Please be aware that some library branches may not have scanners that are capable of reading the barcodes off of phone screens, so you may wish to bring your physical card with you when you visit your local library to be sure their scanners can read the barcode off of your phone.
You will not be allowed to check out a book without either your physical card or the scannable facsimile of your card on your mobile device. If you visit the library without your card, you may ask the library if they would be willing to hold the books for you until you are able to retrieve your card and return. Different libraries have different local policies, but most will be accommodating.
Your Account Status
Please direct questions or concerns about the status of your PINES library account to your local library. A list of PINES libraries and their contact information is available here.
Please contact the library that you returned the book to about the problem and ask them to do a 'shelf check' to check for the missing item. If the book belongs to a different library than the one you returned it to, you may wish to contact that library as well. A list of PINES libraries and their contact information is available here.
There are several reasons why you would not be able to renew an item (or items) you have checked out. The main reasons are:
- You have reached the maximum renewals allowed on an item.
- Another patron has placed the item on hold.
- There is an issue with your account (such as the account having expired or owing more than $10.00 in fines and fees).
- Some special types of items such as passes or kits may have restrictions on renewals.
Please direct questions or concerns about renewals to your local library. A list of PINES libraries and their contact information is available here.
You have several options:
- If this is a brand new card, try entering the last four digits of the phone number on your account.
- If your account information includes your email address, you may use the Forgot your password? link on the login screen to reset your password. The system does this in batches, so it may take between 30-60 minutes for you to receive the password reset email.
- You may go into any PINES library with your card and your ID to request that the library staff reset your password for you. Please be sure to test it while you are there.
Your online account is automatically created when you register for a library card. Once you have a card, you can manage your account by following these instructions.
A typical PINES library cardholder can have up to 50 items out at one time. Some other types of PINES users may have further restrictions. Some types of items have additional limits. For example, DVDs are currently limited to 15 out at one time.
For your own privacy, PINES does not automatically retain a history of which items you have checked out in the past. However, if you would like PINES to begin storing a list of the items you have checked out (or items you have placed on hold), you can turn this feature on:
- Log in to My Account (http://gapines.org/login)
- Click on Account Preferences.
- Click on Search and History Preferences.
- Check the box next to "Keep history of checked out items?"
- Click Save.
The next time you check out an item, it will automatically add it to a list. To see the list:
- Go to My Account.
- Click on Items Checked Out.
- Click on Checkout History.
If you decide you no longer want PINES to store your checkout history, you may clear your list by going into your account settings and unchecking the "Keep history of checked out items?" box and clicking the Save button.
You may also use the Lists feature to keep a list of items for your own use. There are also free online services such as GoodReads that allow you to track and rate all of the books you've read.
PINES library cards expire after two years and require you to visit your local PINES library facility with picture ID and proof of address (or employment, school enrollment, or property ownership in Georgia) to renew. You will also need to resolve any fines or fees that are present on the account. Contact information for all of the PINES libraries is available here.
This may happen if you are using Internet Explorer 6 or another older web browser that does not use modern encryption methods for security. The best solution to this problem is to upgrade to a newer web browser. However, if you must use Internet Explorer 6, you can change your web browser settings:
- In the top menu, go to Tools -> Internet Options.
- Click the Advanced tab.
- Scroll down to the Security section and click "Use TLS 1.0"
- Click OK.
You may then need to refresh your screen or close your web browser and re-open if your My Account page does not automatically load.
Placing Items on Hold
Why am I not able to place certain books on hold even though the system says that they are available for checkout?
Why can't I place holds on audio/visual items (such as DVDs, music CDs, or audiobooks) that are not owned by my library system?
PINES libraries do not allow holds on audiovisual materials (DVDs, music CDs, audiobooks, and other electronic media) that do not belong to the borrower's home library system. PINES libraries also optionally restrict hold placement on recently acquired materials, such as current bestsellers. If you attempt to place a hold request on an item that has one of these restrictions, you may receive the message "No items were found that could fulfill the requested holds" even when it appears that the items are available. Please note that this restriction only applies to hold requests. Reference materials and certain other materials may only be used within the library and not checked out. PINES library patrons can check out materials in person at any PINES library.
A typical PINES library cardholder can have up to 50 holds placed at one time. Some other types of PINES users may have further restrictions.
There are some items in PINES that are cataloged as a multi-volume set (such as the Full Metal Alchemist series), which does not allow you to place a hold on a specific volume. At this time, placing holds on a specific volume of such a set requires you to contact your local PINES library. Contact information for all of the PINES libraries is available here.
GALILEO (GeorgiA LIbrary LEarning Online) provides online access to many magazines, journals, and other resources not available on the public web. You can use your PINES account to access this resource. Login to your account by following these instructions. Once logged in, click on the "GALILEO" link at the bottom of the page and you should be directed to GALILEO's start page.
PINES policies are created and changed by the PINES Executive Committee, a group of nine member library directors who represent all of the PINES libraries. Please contact the Director of your local PINES library system if you have questions, comments, and/or suggestions about PINES policies.