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Top Ways for How to Recycle Electronics

Updated on October 30, 2012

Most people in the United States today do at least some recycling. However, the majority of us don't do nearly as much as we need to in order to help prevent the damage done to the earth by excessive waste. One of the biggest areas of waste that people are allowing to take over landfills today is electronic waste. The biggest reason for this is that people either don't know that electronics can be recycled or they don't know where to go to recycle their electronics.

The truth is that it's not that difficult to recycle the electronics that you have once you are done with them. It's not quite as simple as sticking them in the recycle bin at your curb, but it's not going to take too much work once you understand how the electronics recycling process works.

The first thing that you need to do is determine whether or not the electronics that you have are recyclable. In most cases, they will be. Common items that people recycle include computers, cell phones, printer, televisions, batteries and even CDs and DVDs. You'll just have to double-check that the electronics recycling plants near you take the things that you have.

To do that, you're going to need to find out where there is a place near you that recycles electronics. There are several different online sources for finding a recycling spot in your area. will let you input your zip code to find a place near you. Other resources for this type of search include E-Cycling Central and

Once you have your location, go to their website or call to find out what the process is for recycling your electronics with them. In most cases, you will just drop off your stuff during the hours allotted by the company. Double-check to make sure that there are no processing fees for your items as some places do charge for their services. If you can't take the items to the location yourself, ask if they have a pick-up service that will come to your home.

Here are some alternatives ways of recycling your electronics if you can't find a location near you that does it:

  • Advertise that you're giving them away. Using a site like Craigslist, you can let people know that you've got free junk and they'll come and get it. Send an email out to all your local contacts and the same results may occur.
  • Donate to a local business or school. They can sell the items at auction. Alternatively, they may be able to get a recycling group to come pick stuff up that wouldn't get picked up at a residence.
  • Barter. You'd be surprised what the people in your neighborhood might be willing to give you in exchange for your old electronics.

• Get creative. Start looking at artistic ways that your old electronics can be used as home décor and you can recycle them without anyone else's help.

Some people fear that getting rid of their old electronics will expose them to security risks. This may be true for the person who isn't tech savvy and wants to just give their old hard drive to their neighbor. But if you work with a local recycling plant, you can take advantage of services like cell phone erasure and computer protection that will help you avoid problems like these.


Submit a Comment

  • Dumbledore profile image

    This Old Guy 7 years ago from Somewhere in Ohio

    There is someone around that will recycle almost anything. The trick is to locate the person that recycles whatever electronic item you are trying to dispose of. The number of people recycling electronics should continue to increase with the supply of rare earth metals decreasing.

  • gcarpanetti profile image

    gcarpanetti 7 years ago from Panama

    Thanks for the information .. very complete and detailed

  • profile image

    Robert Orman 7 years ago

    I only used to recycle batteries. But I heard from someone said before, some scrap collectors do keep these electronic for extracting the gold on the circuit board. But I think it is a waste of time, how many grams can be extracted from a bulb of boards?

    Well, I would it is better than nothing. The gold comes from nothing definitely some will do it.

  • profile image

    Peter Enmore 8 years ago

    The problem is people do not want to drive somewhere to recycle something. If the recyclable companies made it more convenience then more people will recycle. It's sad but it's the American truth.

  • solarpanels4sale profile image

    solarpanels4sale 8 years ago

    Very nice. I really like your point about the donations. A lot of times we end up buying stuff because it is newer, but schools and organizations can use the older stuff with no problems at all.

  • betherickson profile image

    betherickson 9 years ago from Minnesota

    Electronics is hard to recycle or to make use to it in other ways in my point of you. But after reading your hub makes sense to me that others has more ideas of what to do of electronic junks. A barter or donating is a berst way to dispose it.

    Thumbs up for a great hub. :)

    Please visit my hubs when you get some time.

  • profile image

    Recycled Checks Rock! 10 years ago

    How informative this hub of yours is, Kathryn Vercillo! Thanks! If you love protecting the earth with recycled items just like me, I'm sure you would also love this idea: Recycled Checks! You should try to check this out! WE LOVE MOTHER EARTH!

  • compu-smart profile image

    Compu-Smart 10 years ago from London UK

    Great hub..

    I am always a firm believer of one persons junk is another's treasure...I just hope everyone can take more time recycling...