It's a new year and many technology items will call for new updates and upgrades. Upgrading to the latest phone, computer, or other devices can be fun and improve performance, but having the latest and shiny new version doesn’t have to mean wasting the products you have. Only 15 percent of the 6.9millionmetric tons of e-waste produced in the United States in 2019 was collected for proper recycling, according to the Global E-waste Monitor. Here are a few ways to recycle your old electronics that will ensure they continue to get put to good use once you’ve upgraded:
•Donate: Are your dated devices in working condition? Many organizations such as churches, schools and nonprofit organizations accept old electronics as long as they are still usable. Talk to organizations in your community to see if they need or are accepting any devices.
•Recycle: Many electronics contain potentially hazardous materials, they shouldn’t be thrown away in a traditional garbage bin, and typical recycling plants aren’t equipped to handle them. Instead, bring your electronics to businesses that advertise that they recycle electronics. These businesses are connected with recycling plants that are able to process and sort through electronics to safely to reduce e-waste and re-purpose your old devices.
•Sell: When upgrading your electronics, be sure to consider the condition of the devices you are looking to replace. If the device is still in working condition or can be easily repaired, consider selling online. Sites such as Offer up and Ebay makes it easy to sell old electronics.
•Safety: Using these methods to dispose of your old electronics helps to reduce e-waste and re-purpose devices that you no longer need or use, but it is important to remember to protect your personal information when doing so. Regardless of whether you are choosing to recycle, donate or sell your items, be sure to wipe your hard drive completely so that your personal information can’t be accessed from your old devices.