Since technology upgrades fairly regularly, we need to dispose of old electronic devices to make space for the new ones.
The problem is, getting rid of old electronics isn’t as straightforward as disposing of regular junk. There are factors that need to be considered. For example, some electronic devices contain chemicals that can be harmful to the environment if not disposed of properly. What’s more, you may be depriving yourself of other practical uses of electronics by simply throwing them out. Let’s look at five ideas of what you can do with old electronic devices.
1. Sell It
If you like to always own the latest gadgets, you may find that you’re collecting quite a pile of tech that you no longer use. Instead of watching them gather dust, or simply adding them to landfill, you might find that someone will happily take them from you, getting you some money back and sending the gadget to a new home. You could sell to a second-hand shop, or you could try selling your item online for a better price.
2. Donate It
If the selling option isn’t for you, a simpler alternative would be to donate your devices. Even if the gadget no longer works, many charities and non-profit organisations can find a use for them. Charity shops and specialist organisations are an excellent way to recycle old technology without the hassle of finding a buyer and negotiating a fee. And you’ll get the extra bonus of contributing to a good cause.
3. Gift It
Just because you no longer have any need for a device, it doesn’t mean someone else wouldn’t be happy to receive it as a gift. If you know a friend or family member who would enjoy your old electronic device, you could give it to them as a gift. This would take it off your hands and make someone you care about really happy at the same time. And it just might be a good way to cover your obligations at Christmas or on someone’s birthday.
4. Upcycle It
If you have a few tech skills and a little creativity, you could try upcycling your device. This involves repurposing an object for a different function – for example, a disused spring could be re-purposed as a cable protector. Many ways exist for the creative upcycler to turn old electronics into some other useful item. You just need to think outside the box, and you might come up with a genius idea.
5. Trade it for gift cards
Some retailers have a trade-in option that allows you to exchange old electronics for gift cards. Curry’s, for example, collect, reuse and recycle around 65,000 tonnes of electrical appliances every year. That saves you the trouble of seeking out a potential buyer and opens the door to getting something new for yourself.
These are just a few of the possible ways you can get rid of your old electronics without sending them to landfill. There are various other ideas to discover, but the important thing is to minimise your waste so that you aren’t harming the environment. There will always be someone who would enjoy your old tech, so if you don’t have a way to reuse it yourself then get it to someone who can!
12 thoughts on “Not sure what to do with your old electronic devices? Here are 5 ideas”
Great ideas, we have an old tablet lying around in a drawer. I have been to lazy but I think I might put it online and see what happens.
Brilliant ideas! Thankfully i just hand mine down to my son when I upgrade a phone and I can’t think of the last time I had any other electronics to get rid of.
Actually I still think I may have thrown my 13 year old IPod in the bin by accident. I feel pretty terrible about that ending up in landfill but also for nostalgia reasons!
Oh no, we’ve lost a GoPro in the house somewhere and I’m really hoping that hasn’t ended up in the bin !
It’s strange, I don’t really have any old technology. I don’t even have an old phone but I don’t know what I did with it.
I usually sell my old electronics, or let me eldest use them. I’d love to try to upcycle them though!
This is already a big problem, the WEEE regulations were brought in to ensure businesses were responsible for the recycling of their own products but I believe this is limited. I love the idea of repurposing products for other things. I also heard a story about a mobile phone that was designed to be upgraded with better cameras, memory etc…it wasn’t commercially viable. Sadly.
So many things just aren’t built to last now and we’ve become such a disposable society, we need to get back to the ethos of repairing things. I love that we have a local repair cafe now.
I have so many old devices and things that I need to get rid of but just keep hanging on to. I am going to donate them after reading your post. Just because I don’t need them anymore doesn’t mean they won’t benefit someone else x
We had a good clear out a while ago.
I think we need to have a gadget clear out, we have quite a few old devices kicking about. I’ve used a service similar to the Curry’s one before where you could send off old phones in return for cashback.
We donate most of ours – the school have done really well out of us LOL
what a great way of re-purposing them