How to recycle electronics responsibly

How to recycle electronics
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Today is Green Monday and it's more than just about shopping for last minute gifts and buying eco-friendly products. It's also a reminder that we all must do our part to promote sustainable living. The recycling of electronics is one of many initiatives.

We're in a time where devices that make our lives easier and bring us joy are treasures. Today's must-have gadgets we can't imagine living without will eventually become tomorrow's trash.

It's important to properly dispose of electronics to reduce harmful effects on the environment. Laptops, phones, tablets, TVs are made of metals and minerals that can be reused to manufacture the next-generation of tech. Responsibly recycling electronics helps to eliminate waste and keep them off our landfills.

The Consumer Technology Association's (CTA) GreenerGadgets is just one of many resources in which you may repurpose our everyday tech. Here's how you can recycle your electronics safely and responsibly. 

Recycle electronics for credit

One of the best ways to get rid of unwanted electronics is to trade it in for a credit. For mobile devices, wireless carriers in the U.S. and tech brands like Apple,  Dell, and Samsung will give you credit for your old laptop, phone, tablet, smartwatch or headphones. This method of recycling might save you hundreds or even net you a free device if you get the highest value.

Keep in mind that your gadget must be in working condition if you're looking for a trade-in credit. Consider selling broken electronics for parts on a marketplace like eBay. Or find an electronics recycling center near you. 

Recycle electronics for money

Prefer cash over credit? Recycle your electronics by selling it to someone else who will make good use of it. Online Marketplaces like eBay, Mercari and Facebook are some of the places where you can turn your trash into cash.

When creating your listing, be sure to take high quality photos, detail the cosmetic condition and if the item is fully functional or not functional at all. Even if your item is in broken condition, its parts may be of value to someone else.

Recycle electronics for free 

Thanks to the Consumer Technology Association's GreenerGadgets resource, U.S. residents can recycle electronics for free at select drop-off locations via Greener Gadgets. Staples offers free recycling services. Select items like TVs and floor model printers are not accepted. For a $30 drop-off fee (waived in CA.), Best Buy accepts TVs under 50-inches. TV drop-offs are not accepted at Best Buy locations in CT and PA.

Another great resource to tap into is Call-2-recycle where you'll find drop-off locations for phones and all kinds of batteries

Hilda Scott

Hilda Scott uses her combined passion for gadgets and bargain shopping to bring you the best prices on all things tech. She has a bachelor’s degree in film and media studies from Hunter College and 11 years of tech and entertainment journalism. Her work has been featured on Tom’s Guide, iTechPost,, Parlemag, Enstars, and Latin Times. When she's not scouting for the best deals, Hilda’s catching up on her favorite TV shows and pro-wrestling matches.