There is waste that can be recycled and waste that can’t. Most people are familiar with recycling bottles and glass jars. You know that paper can be broken down and pressed into new paper products. You may even know about the cool things you can do with recycled tire rubber. But what about electronics? Over 80% of electronics are improperly disposed of and go to landfills instead of being processed to recycle all those circuit boards, and metal plates that still have value in raw materials.
Let’s talk about e-waste, the importance of proper disposal, and where you can find e-waste disposal in your area.
What is E-Waste?
E-waste is electronic trash from any electronic device, machine, or appliance. E-waste includes everything from cellphones to air conditioners. There are six categories of e-waste that will help you understand the total number of items that are so often poorly disposed of.
1. Small IT and Telecommunication (Cellphones and devices)
- GPS devices
- Modems and routers
- Pocket calculators
- Personal computers
2. Screens and Monitors
- Notebooks (small laptops)
- Fluorescent lamps
- High-intensity discharge lamps
4. Small Appliances
- Medical equipment
- Coffee makers
- Foot massagers
- electric toys
- Power tools
- Video cameras
5. Large Appliances
- Washing machines
- Water heaters
- large printers and copy machines
- Solar panels
6. Temperature Exchange Equipment
- AC and Heaters (HVAC)
- Heat pumps
Why You Should Recycle E-Waste
Anything with a circuit board, screen, light diodes, or temperature exchange equipment is considered e-waste and should be disposed of properly for three very important reasons.
· Saving the environment
· Reclaiming the materials
· It’s the law
To make electronic equipment, big or small, we need to use a combination of rare metals like gold and cobalt, common valuable metals like copper, and volatile chemicals like the acid in a battery. These materials have a combined motivation to recycle. First, heavy metals and battery acid are bad for the environment – when allowed to decay in a landfill.
Second, we want to make more electronics. These rare metals don’t need to be mined or purchased internationally – we can build new circuit boards out of old circuit board materials. We don’t need to mine new copper for wires, merely reclaim the miles of copper wire in appliances and cords that would otherwise be thrown away. Metal plates, re-molded plastic, and new screens are all part of the benefit of properly recycling your e-waste.
Proper Ways to Dispose of E-Waste:
1. Check with your local trash disposal service
Your local disposal service will likely have a preferred way that you handle your e-waste. Some will have a separate e-waste intake method like a drop box or pickup requests, while others will have a partner they work with. You may find that a local electronics or appliance retail store will have drop-off points for e-waste.
2. Find a local household hazardous waste facility
Another option is to seek a household hazardous waste facility. Household hazardous waste may specifically include batteries and freezers that contain dangerous chemicals. Your local hazardous waste facility will likely have a solution for accepting e-waste which can become hazardous in the long-term or in landfill conditions.
Your third option is to donate your e-waste to an organization that turns old cellphones into a charitable cause. These organizations offer e-waste collection points to keep your large and small old appliances out of the landfill and take on the challenge of properly disposing and recycling e-waste from the community.
On-Time Trash and Recycling with Infinite Disposal
If you are looking for a trash and recycling service you can count on in Colorado Springs, you’ve found us. Infinite Disposal offers reliable residential trash disposal and recycling services. Contact us today to upgrade your recycling solutions.