How to Recycle Tech Gear


The new iPhone 7 is expected for release on September 7th, and rumors have it that Apple will be dropping the old school headphone jack in place of a new wireless set up, among other changes. Along with the upcoming overhaul of the MacBook Pro, that’s a whole lot of tech to upgrade. But what do you do with all of that gear when you do make the upgrade? Heck, how do you recycle any type of tech gear when you can’t just toss it in the recycling bin? Judy Campa, our resident web designer and developer, is a huge proponent for recycling in the office and offers these 5 tips on how to recycle different types of tech gear:

1. Batteries

If you work in an office or have any gadgets at home, you probably have a fair amount of batteries laying around. We’re making the switch to rechargeable batteries ourselves, but single-use batteries contain many resources that can be recycled as well! Batteries that are thrown away with regular trash often end up in landfills where the heavy metals can leak into the soil or water, or if burned in an incinerator, can contribute to air pollution.

In most cities, single use batteries are properly recycled by your local waste disposal services. Your waste management department should have a hazardous waste drop off available for dropping off batteries and much more. Check with your local facilities to see when you can take your stash of batteries for drop off. When rechargeable batteries eventually lose their juice, you can take them to your local Best Buy for recycling.

2. Electronic Cords

We all have old charger cables and plugs that we no longer need or want. And what about those wornout headphones–especially when iPhones lose their headphone jacks? When you buy those earbuds, the little trashcan icon with an X over it means do not throw it away! Best Buy will take care of those for you, too.

3. Printer Cartridges

REFILL THEM! This will save you a lot of money in the long run. Stores like Office Depot offer recycling and refilling of certain cartridges. Some ink brands even provide envelopes in their packaging for you to send empty cartridges back for refilling or recycling. You can also take them to Office Depot, Best Buy, or Target for recycling.

4. Phones & Tablets

Old cell phones are what we’re all probably most concerned about doing something with when we upgrade, mainly because everyone knows they’re worth quite a bit of money if you resell them. And there’s not much better than getting money for your old tech when you paid a pretty penny for it. Some of us may still have those super old devices that aren’t worth much–or damaged ones that aren’t salvageable, though. Don’t, worry you can drop those 80’s bricks and 90’s flip phones, along with those cracked screens off to be recycled at, you guessed it, Best Buy!

5. Computers and Hardware

Monitors, keyboards, that old mouse, TV’s, old printers, cameras….all these extras are recyclable, too. They all contain things we don’t want leaching into our water supply and soil. It’s much more preferable to reuse those metals and materials to create more new tech instead of increasing the demand for additional materials. These items, too, can be taken to Best Buy for recycling.

So, whether you’re ready to upgrade to the latest and greatest iPhone 7, or your old tech has just seen it’s last day, there’s no reason not to dispose of it responsibly by recycling.

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