The Recycle Bin icon does not refresh automatically in Windows Vista or in Windows XP
The Recycle Bin icon in Windows Vista or Windows XP does not refresh after you empty the recycle bin or delete a file or a folder. Instead, the Recycle Bin icon is stuck on either the empty icon or the full icon. However, if you press the F5 button on the keyboard to refresh the Desktop manually, the Recycle Bin icon refreshes correctly.
For more information on this issue, including potential causes, workarounds, and resolutions, see: Microsoft KB Article KB968873.