E-Cycling Fundamentals

Most of us understand the inherent joy of a new system. It could be a computer tower fresh and ready for use with lightning speeds and glorious visuals. It could be a new phone that is a massive upgrade from what you used before. Perhaps a laptop that is all-in-one and ready to give you new options on the go. The unfortunate side effect of a new system or device is you are left with the old one. Consider all the components that you have and no longer need. Phones are just the device, perhaps a charge cord. Computers have far more cords and peripherals such as keyboards, a mouse, monitors, speakers, and so on. Upgrading to the latest or even just a newer model gives consumers a large pile of older hardware and parts that can become a problem. Inside these devices are toxic materials such as lead, cadmium, mercury, and beryllium. Such are not chemicals that belong in a landfill or similar environment. The solution is to recycle them, or e-cycle, the term used for electronic recycling.

The process is not difficult at all. First, gather your old, unwanted, or broken electronics and extras. A quick search online or some phone calls should help you find a local e-cycler in your area. Often these locations are advertised or at least identified via online. A search in Google should easily identify local drop-off points that are not out of your way. Effective searches can include something as simple as computer recycling service or your city name and electronics recycling service. Some even have free pickup, depending on your area. This is dependent on the amount to be retrieved, as well. A single computer is not generally enough to warrant a pickup, but if several items are gathered together it becomes more attractive to send out a driver and save you the hassle. If that is not an option, a drop-off takes only a few minutes of your time, and removes the issue from your hands. From there, the recycling or e-cycling location takes care of the device and materials for you. It is safe, easy, and keeps the environment in better condition.

A good e-cycling location will not be picky about what items they will take. Any type of electronic device and peripheral should be fair and open to be taken care of. Be certain that the location you choose is not only taking the better items and leaving you with the less-desirable components. The only other suggestion when doing this is to be sure to use a DoD level wipe or a professional style shredder to completely destroy the hard drive. A home shredder or a hammer will not sufficiently do the job.

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