The world of electronics is constantly changing, with improved products being introduced and old products quickly becoming a thing of the past. While you may be aware of the importance of recycling plastic and paper goods, you might not realize that you can also recycle your old electronics and the parts that go with them. Electronics are made with important resources that require energy to manufacture. By allowing your used electronics to be refurbished, you will provide parts to be used in repairs and you will also help reduce waste. You will also do your part in reducing air and water pollution that comes with the manufacture of new electronic parts.
Most stores that sell electronics have a policy that allows them to take back used electronics. Items that are typically accepted are computer monitors, laptops, printers, mouses, keyboards, scanners, cameras, computer modems, amplifiers, tablets, cell phones, PDA’s and computer cables. Other items that may be accepted for recycling are CD players, hard drives, fax machines, camcorders, word processors, batteries, remote controls and telephone equipment. Large or bulky electronics such as microwave ovens, ovens, washing machines, air conditioners and vacuum cleaners are usually not accepted for refurbishing at retail stores. However, there are private businesses that accept large appliances for refurbishing. Before turning in your products for recycling, be sure to remove the batteries as they are usually recycled separately. Many retail stores also allow you to turn in old electronics for credit when purchasing new items such as cell phones. In addition to retail stores, there are many local non-profit organizations that have recycling programs in your area.
Electronic recycling not only reduces waste that ends up in landfills, but it also reduces electricity usage. According to the United States Environmental Protection Agency or EPA, recycling one million laptops saves the energy equivalent of 3,500 residential homes in a one year time period. For every million cell phones recycled, 35 thousand pounds of copper, 75 pounds of gold and 772 pounds of silver are recovered.
Components used in electronic devices such as computers and cell phones, contain materials that can damage our environment. However, by recycling these items you can reduce the amount of lead and cadmium which are harmful to people if leached into the soil or water. Recycling can also reduce the amount of items that end up in landfills across the United States.
Before you turn-in your old electronic gadgets for recycling, it is important to protect yourself from identify theft. Be sure to delete personal information such as bank account numbers, passwords and credit or debit card numbers. For added protection remove personal files containing photos, as well.
So next time you replace your old television, cell phone or computer consider recycling your E-waste. If you have trouble finding a place to recycle electronics, you might want to consider donating them to charities such as the Salvation Army or Goodwill. These organizations are dedicated to helping those less fortunate than ourselves find quality electronics and appliances at reduced prices. By recycling your used electronics, you can do your part to protect the environment and also keep the cost of new electronics at reasonable prices.
Love2Recycle are a European based company offering you money for your old mobile phone, find out more about them on their website.