What do you do with your old tech after you’ve upgraded to the latest and greatest model? All too often, the answer is we stick it in a drawer to gather dust and never be used again – or, in the case of larger household appliances, they get sent to the rubbish dump.
What about the alternative? Here are four smarter things you can do with your old and unwanted tech…
1. Recycle it
If you want to minimise your impact on the environment, one of the best things you can do with your old gadget or appliance is to recycle it. Recycling old technology has now become the norm, with more than 378,000 tonnes of electrical appliances being collected and recycled in the UK during the first nine months of 2018 alone.
Many technology manufacturers and retailers like Currys now offer safe recycling schemes and will collect your old gadget or appliance to be recycled on your behalf. Items that can be recycled include IT equipment and smartphones, audio and visual equipment like TVs and stereos, household tools, and small appliances including toasters, vacuum cleaners, irons and kettles. You can even recycle large electrical items like freezers, fridges, washing machines and dishwashers.
2. Give it to charity
Another option is to donate your old tech to charity. Indeed, an increasing number of charities are accepting both working and non-working tech, which is then sold for money and used towards supporting the work of the charity. As an example, leading charity Oxfam has partnered with Corporate Mobile Recycling to set up a scheme for recycling old phones. Working handsets are often sold to buyers in emerging markets like Africa and China, while damaged or non-functioning devices are recycled.
3. Sell it or trade it in
If you’re looking to raise some cash, another option is to sell or trade in your device. This can be especially attractive if the item has a lot of value.
If you don’t want the hassle of selling through eBay, there are also a number of companies that offer money for your old, unwanted gadgets. Alternatively, schemes like the Amazon Trade-In Program offer vouchers or discounts on new tech when you trade in your old eligible device.
4. Reuse it
If you fancy doing something different, why not consider repurposing your old gadget and turn it into something new? For example, you could turn your old computer into a jukebox or transform a recycled circuit board into a quirky lamp table. The possibilities are literally endless! Take a look at this article if you need some further inspiration.
Is it safe to recycle, sell or give away my gadget?
Recycling your old equipment and appliances is perfectly safe providing you keep a couple of things in mind
Most importantly, you should make sure to remove any personal data from the device before you sell or give it away. While any respectable business should remove this data before they sell it on, it’s always best to do it yourself before you give it away. If you’re not sure about exactly what you need to do on your particular device, you should find the relevant steps on the manufacturer’s website.