How to Recycle Electronics and Scrap

Do you want to upgrade your flat screen TV or replace office printers, faxes and monitors with new gadgets? Unused electronics do not belong in trash cans. If you want to protect the environment, there are good reasons to recycle electronics and other scrap metal. Recycling old gadgets and metals pays fairly well. Here are current scrap prices to help you get started. 

Why recycle old gadgets?

Did you know 70 percent of the electronic devices and appliances thrown away each year can be recycled? Consider recycling items that you no longer have a use for. You can recover precious metals such as aluminium, steel, gold and silver, and plastic. All these resources need a lot of energy to extract and then manufacture. Besides, the gas emitted pollute the air, water and damage soil.

When you recycle electronics, recovered items are resold, repurposed or reused in new products. Recycling is not rocket science. Thankfully, there are plenty of ways to recycle electronics, rather than hoarding them in your attic or even worse, letting them languish in the landfills. 

Recycle it Right

Recycling your old gadgets is a fantastic way to conserve natural resources. Conserving natural resources protects the environment. If electronics are not disposed properly, they harm the soil, water and pose potential dangers to human health. You need to ensure everything you decide to recycle is done correctly and safely.

Sort Large and Small Electronics

Large electronics are your TVs, your dishwasher, washing machine, and refrigerator. They are easy to sort, of course. The smaller electronics are your smart phones, computers, accessories, gaming consoles, batteries, etc. Recovering the precious metals is useful and pays. But it is important that harmful chemicals like mercury or lead from large electronics does not get into the environment.

Prep Your Gadgets for Recycle

If your electronics are damaged and not handled properly, then it harms the environment. You need to prep your gadgets responsibly when you recycle. Here are some tips on how to get your gadgets ready for recycling: 

  • Delete all personal data from your devices
  • Remove batteries, recycle them separately

If you have a television to recycle, ensure that it is packed in the right boxes. Any damage can release harmful toxins out of the appliance. Check if it still works or if minor damages can be repaired before you decide it is suitable for only recycling.


Do you think your electronics can be repaired or appear to be in working condition? That is good news. Reusing your old devices extends its life. That is so much better than disposing or recycling electronics altogether. If it is in a working condition and you no longer have any use for it, why not donate it to the Goodwill or your local church? Or maybe one of these organizations:

Socially concerned  organizations are clamoring to get hold of used electronics. Organizations like The National Cristina Foundation move goods to schools and special needs people. You can also sell your items on eBay’s Giving Works. They let the amounts go directly to the charity of your choice.

Want to Sell or Trade, instead?

If donating is not what you had in mind, you can always look up electronics stores that buy old devices. Companies like  Gazelle and TechForward have good recycling programs for used electronics. You can also trade your old electronics for upgraded ones. Often these trade-offs get you a good discount on the new device. Many large appliances are ideal for recycling for scrap metal. Recycling scrap metal pays so it is always a good answer if you are looking to make a bit of cash. 

Look for an Electronic Recycler

An electronic recycler near you will take your items for cash. They will sort them, weigh them and pay the market prices for metals recovered from it. Make sure you do some checking before you sell your old gadgets for money to these recyclers. It is important to know if they dispose and recycle your items responsibility. If not, then you are better off sending your electronics back to the manufacturers.

Company Pick-up

Most companies accept a free return of old electronics. This is a sustainable way to recycle electronics. For example, Apple stores take your old devices (which still work) and give you a gift card. Sony has set up many drop-off locations and has free shipping for lighter devices. Canon though, charges a small fee.

Re-gift the Electronics

To extend the life of your electronics, you can always regift them to friends and family. It is a legitimate way to recycle too!

Recycling electronics and scrap is a simple way to protect the environment and conserve resources. In many cases you can also get paid to recycle electronics because they often feature scrap metal. Although scrap metal prices vary based on many factors it is a simple way to do your part in protecting the environment as well as earning a bit of extra cash.