How to Dispose of Old Computers That Don’t Work?

Almost every household in the developed world had a home computer at one point in time. Nowadays, most urban families in the developing world also have a home computer. But with the advent of personalized laptops, desktop computers have fallen out of favor for most families. 

This resulted in a lot of us having one out of date desktop computer in the house that stopped working ages ago. It’s currently sitting with the other junk we don’t know what to do with. You are not sure if it will ever be useful again, but you are sure it doesn’t seem right to throw it out in the garbage. The environment thanks you for not tossing it into the trash,because computers like most electronics can be very harmful to the environment. 

There are ways to safely get rid of them however, and I will give you a thorough, descriptive guide on how to do it in this article. 

How to Dispose of Old Computers That Don’t Work?

Disposing of old computers is not as easy as disposing of regular household recyclables like food containers or paper. Computers fall under the category of electronic waste, which means they are harmful to the environment if they are just tossed into landfills. 

There are several ways you can dispose of your computer properly, you can contact the manufacturer to take the product off your hand, you can contact a local electronic waste recycling program, trade-in your old computer from an authorized dealer and buy a new one, you can also take it apart and use the parts separately to make good use of it. 

Contact the manufacturer: 

Most computer manufacturers like Dell or HP will accept your old computer free of charge from you. You may drop it off at your closest authorized store that sells your brand of computer or you may mail it to a location the manufacturer provides. 

One thing you must keep in mind is, some companies are less environmentally responsible and will simply take your broken computer and dump it in a landfill in a developing country like Ghana

Do a little research about how your computer’s manufacturer disposes of old electronics before you hand it over. 

Find an electronic waste recycler: 

You can search if there is any electronic recycling program around you. Electronics are not recycled the same as average household goods. They require specialized facilities for extracting precious metals out of them.

Moreover, they contain toxic metals like mercury and cadmium which require special protocol to be dealt with. Millions of tons of electronics occupy acres and acres of landscape in landfills because these are thrown out into the trash instead of being recycled. 

Electronic waste accumulating in the landfills is an issue of its own and we need to do what we can to minimize the waste piling up. 

This is why it’s very important to find a recycling program for old computers around your area. These types of information are usually easily accessible from the internet.

Swap your old computer and buy a new one: 

Many big chain stores like Best Buy and Staples often take in old electronics for free. Now this is not a program that all branches partake in, and since your computer  is broken, it might not be appropriate for you. But you should contact the nearest chain store and ask if they accept these types of electronics and sell a new one in return. 

Reuse your computer: 

Your old computer may be broken but it is not completely useless. If your monitor works you can simply plug it into the new Computer you purchase. Or if your drives are still working you may take them out and reuse them. You can find out how you can reuse your old computer from here

Conclusion: 

Almost every household in the developed world had a home computer at one point in time. Nowadays, most urban families in the developing world also have a home computer. But with the advent of personalized laptops, desktop computers have fallen out of favor for most families. 

This resulted in a lot of us having one out of date desktop computer in the house that stopped working ages ago. It’s currently sitting with the other junk we don’t know what to do with. You are not sure if it will ever be useful again, but you are sure it doesn’t seem right to throw it out in the garbage. The environment thanks you for not tossing it into the trash,because computers like most electronics can be very harmful to the environment. 

There are ways to safely get rid of them however, and I gave you a thorough, descriptive guide on how to do it in this article. 

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs): How to Dispose of Old Computers That Don’t Work

How do I get rid of an old computer? 

You can return it to the manufacturer, send it to an electronic recycling company, or reuse it for parts. 

How do I get rid of a broken computer monitor? 

You can return it to the manufacturer, send it to an electronic recycling company, or see if Best Buy has a recycling program in your area. 

Can I throw my old PC in the trash?

No, it may even be illegal in some parts of the United States and Europe. Electronics like computers leak harmful, heavy metals which are very toxic to the environment and affect human health as well. 

Are old computers recyclable? 

Yes, they are taken apart by a recycling company and are recycled for the plastic components and the metals in them. 

Do electronic stores take old broken computers free of charge? 

Stores like Best Buy or Staples do take old computers free of charge. Best Buy has this service in most of their stores. Staples is slowly expanding this service in more and more stores. 

Do companies have buy-back programs for their old computers that don’t work? 

There are no buy back programs for computers that are broken, however, many stores accept these free of charge for recycling. 

References:

  1. Simple Ways to Dispose of Old Laptops: 12 Steps (with Pictures). (2022). Retrieved 31 January 2022, from https://www.wikihow.com/Dispose-of-Old-Laptops
  2. Kantra, S. (2022). How to Safely Get Rid of an Old Computer. Retrieved 31 January 2022, from https://www.techlicious.com/how-to/how-to-safely-get-rid-of-an-old-computer/
  3. How to Dispose of Your Laptop Securely in 4 Steps | AssetCare. (2022). Retrieved 31 January 2022, from https://asset-care.uk/news/how-to-dispose-of-your-laptop-securely-in-4-steps/
  4. How to Get Rid of Your Old Laptop. (2022). Retrieved 31 January 2022, from https://www.laptopmag.com/articles/get-rid-of-old-laptop-2
  5. (2022). Retrieved 31 January 2022, from https://computing.which.co.uk/hc/en-gb/articles/115004416785-How-to-recycle-your-old-computer
  6. How to Dispose of Old Computers Safely. (2022). Retrieved 31 January 2022, from https://shredcube.com/how-to-dispose-of-old-computers/
  7. How To Protect Your Data Before You Get Rid of Your Computer. (2022). Retrieved 31 January 2022, from https://www.consumer.ftc.gov/articles/how-protect-your-data-you-get-rid-your-computer
  8. How to Dispose of Old Computers | Crucial. (2022). Retrieved 31 January 2022, from https://www.crucial.com/articles/pc-users/computer-disposal-how-to-recycle-old-computers
  9. Planning to upgrade a device this holiday season? Here’s how to recycle your old one. (2022). Retrieved 31 January 2022, from https://www.cnet.com/tech/mobile/recycle-your-old-laptops-phones-cameras-and-batteries-for-free-heres-how/
  10. How to Recycle Laptops Safely and Responsibly. (2022). Retrieved 31 January 2022, from https://www.treehugger.com/laptop-recycling-5198862

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