green ways to get rid of old computer


You might have an old laptop or computer that is on it’s last leg. Face it, there comes a day when it’s time to let those old electronics go. Before you throw away a seemingly useless device, stop and think. Electronics are filled with toxic materials such as lead, arsenic, and cadmium that could do major damage if stuck in a landfill. In fact, even though e-waste only takes up about 2% of American landfills, it accounts for a whopping 70% of overall toxic waste. Instead of simply throwing out your old computers, try out these environmentally friendly ways to get rid of that outdated PC instead. 


Sell it


You might think it’s not worth it, but more than likely there’s someone out there who would want your old computer. The internet offers so many new ways to sell online with little to no cost to you. You could try eBay, Facebook Marketplace, Craigslist, etc. People can be very creative with what they do with old PCs, including turning them into gaming systems. Basically, the saying “one man’s trash is another man’s treasure” might be cliché, but it’s definitely accurate. 


Donate it


If you truly can’t find someone to buy your computer, consider donating it. There are a lot of organizations that are always seeking computers, including your local public schools. In doing this, you help the environment while also helping someone in need. 


Recycle it


Recycling isn’t just for paper, glass, and plastics. Electronics are built with valuable materials such as glass and metal, which takes energy to manufacture. When you recycle, you help conserve our planet’s natural resources and limit the amount of pollution. According to the Environmental Protection Agency’s website, “Recycling one million laptops saves the energy equivalent to the electricity used by more than 3,500 US homes in a year.” Mid-Missouri residents can take advantage of recycling electronics through Mid-Mo Recycling


Keep In Mind


Computers store your personal data, so make sure everything is cleared out before giving it away. To stay safe, you’ll want to wipe out your computer’s hard drive by using a program. You could also simply remove and destroy it. Before that, make sure you:


  • Save any needed files to a USB, external hard drive, or to another computer. 
  • Check your computer’s manual for help if you still have it. 
  • Research programs to wipe out your hard drive.