While e-cycling events are being held with greater frequency as technology becomes more and more prevalent in our lives, they still haven’t quite caught up. We’re living in an age when humans can make themselves into cyborgs with microchip implant, when artificially intelligent robots actually pose an existential threat to our workforce and the very economic system that begat them, and any social faux pas you may ever commit runs an actual risk of being recorded and shared with half the planet. So sometimes waiting for the second Saturday in October when your town has it’s annual e-cycling/electronics recycling event may not be enough.
In case your tempted to dump it in the waste-bin, keep in mind that you’re contributing to an increasingly growing form of pollution. These devices can have dozens of lethal chemicals. A computer monitor can have 3 or 4 pounds of lead in it. Keep in mind that children get lead poisoning from lead dust particles and you’ll realize you’ve got a veritable lead holocaust on your hands.
Before you do any of these, make sure to wipe your device.
Ebay or Craigslist
Alright, this one’s pretty obvious. It’s included for thoroughness, not helpfulness. Just make sure you get an idea of the market value by searching for it on eBay with the Completed Listings checkbox check, and if it’s not worth the hassle you can use Crraigslist.
Who knew Staples could actually still serve a purpose? Well, no need to knock them any more because they are being cool enough to partner with a major e-cycler to dispose of your stuff. Just walk it in to any Staples location and they’ll do the rest, no questions ask. And things like ink cartridges will even get you a little in-store credit. Which makes sense when you realize that printer ink has become the other “black gold”.
If you don’t want to sell it yourself let one of these sell it for you. Sites like Gazelle and BuyBackWorld will let you enter your item and give you an instant quote. You won’t have to sweat it going for a steal at auction rates or meet up with a potential criminal from Craigslist.
On a similar note, checkout Amazon and Best Buy, which in lieu of buy-back offer trade-in service. You’ll only be able to get store credit, but if you’re a frequent shopper this could be as good as cash.
Salvation Army and Goodwill would probably be happy to have your old electronics, and you get the satisfaction of helping out those in a time of need. Just make sure items on Goodwill’s list of accepted items before driving it in. Or in the case of Salvation Army, ask them as you schedule a time for their home-pickup service to come grab it.
Remember FreeCycle? For a brief moment in the mid-aughts Freecycle seemed poised to become a real thing. Granted it seems to have fallen off everyone’s radar somewhat since then, but you’ll probably be surprised to lookup your neighborhood and find there’s a more active community of Freecyclers in your area than you ever thought possible. So, what’s a Freecycler? It’s someone trying to get rid of something they don’t want. But hey, in this scenario, that’s you!
There’s always pawn shops. Granted they’re not usually on one’s radar unless they’re looking to score their next fix, but you can be the pawn-shop customer that shatters the stereotype.