Can You Recycle Computers?

Can you recycle computers? You can take a computer monitor, keyboards, and even PDAs to a recycling center. There may be a charge to dispose of these items. You can take your old computers, monitors, keyboards…

You can take your old computers, monitors, keyboards and other accessories that are taking up space in your home to local organizations that collect them, or to your local recycling center. It is a good idea to let them handle it rather than dispose of the old parts yourself, as computers and monitors contain highly toxic materials that can damage the environment when disposed of improperly.

Your local electronics store, recycling center or even charities may have a special event where they will collect unwanted computers. Emerald Computers, in Peoria Arizona, will take any computer products you have any time they are open to properly recycle them.  Also, many electronics stores have bins out all the time where you can drop off unwanted electronics.

Since computers and monitors contain harmful substances, they are more difficult to recycle than the average item. Because of this, it may actually cost you money to have it recycled. But, the amount is small. At many places they say, “[Consumers] will be charged for the monitors because of the lead content. It costs a little bit of money to recycle those.” The charge will most likely be under $10.  However, a charity hoping to re-use your old computer will most likely not charge you to have them take it off your hands. They are happy for the donation. Cost basically depends upon an organization’s ability to handle the materials.  Arizona Computer Recycling never charges for recycled products brought to them.

If you feel you don’t know how to properly dispose of personal information stored in your hard drive, it is still okay to donate it. The company that dismantles your computer will wipe the hard drive clean and no information will be transmitted. Donating or recycling is the easiest and safest way to get rid of old computers. You will feel good knowing that it is out of your house and that it will do some good.

Today, technology changes so quickly, many people are quick to dispose of their computer and get the newest version. Other models become obsolete and people have no use for them. This trend has been creating more electronics waste than it ever has. The amount of “e-waste”, or electronics waste, is increasing each year and is quickly becoming a serious problem.

In addition to keeping toxic materials out of landfills, you will be helping to curb strip mining. There are many precious metals in computers that can be re-used in the manufacturing of new computers.

Some old computers are not even garbage. They still have functioning parts that can be salvaged and used to create refurbished computers which can then be donated to those in need. So, by donating your old computer rather than throwing it out, you are not only doing a service to your environment, but also to fellow humans. Check with local schools, churches and non-profit organizations to see if they could use the parts. Computers and the Internet are becoming such an important part of society and those with access have a clear advantage. There is a growing gap between those with that advantage and those without it. Your donation will help bridge that gap.

Even if there is no way to use a computer or their parts as a computer there is still plenty of value left.  Once the different parts of a computer are separated the metal and valuable resources from inside the computer can be extracted and reused.  It takes 50 times less energy to extract metal from used computers than it does from ore that people mine.
On every level recycling your old computer helps the environment, and he helps out the people who may be able to reuse some or all of it.


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