When it comes to recycling electronics there are a lot of important factors to consider since they aren’t disposed of in the standard way. This is because electronic products can release toxic substances when they are destroyed, making them a difficult thing to handle properly.

Sadly, only about 20% of all global electronic waste is disposed of properly. Here are 3 ways that you can responsibly dispose of your old electronics whether they are computers, cell phones, TVs or old stereos.

Find a Reputable Recycler

Before you go and do this though, you will need to erase all personal data that exists on the device. This is so that you can protect yourself against people who might want to steal your identity by hacking into old files containing your personal information.

Check in your local area to see if there are any organizations that offer help with recycling any old electronics you might have. Some groups have drop-off locations all over the U.S., so you might be able to find one of them. These are usually organized by zip code.

Another thing to look into is to see if your city sponsors any collection days for electronics.

If Not Recycle, Donate

If you think your electronic device may be of use because of its condition, you might consider donating it before you throw it away. There is probably a charity or non-profit organization near you that will take your device. Make sure you get a receipt so that you can deduct it from your next tax return.

Many programs and existing online stores will also take your device if you cannot find a local place.

Give It to a Tech Firm

Check with the manufacturer of the device to find out if they take back the old and used devices. Many of these electronic manufacturers have good recycling and/or buyback programs that will allow you to give your device a second life.

Before You Buy

Before you go and buy another piece of electronic equipment, consider what you will do with the old one it is replacing. It’s just as important to recycle your e-waste as it is to limit your consumption since it is becoming an increasingly widespread issue due to the rise in the production of consumer electronics. 

Now that you know these quick tips on how to recycle your old devices properly, you’ll be more equipped to make smart decisions when it comes time to get out the old and bring in the new.