7 great reasons to recycle your computer equipment

We all know that saving the planet is really important but in our busy lives it is easy to overlook some really simple ways to make a positive impact on the world around us. Sometimes it is the things that we never think about that can quickly and easily make a difference. Once you stop and think about it, recycling your old hardware is such an obvious choice for anyone who wants to help keep our planet clean. The fact that you can make some money too is the icing on the cake!

  • 1 - Recycle old devices and make money too

We’d all love to have unlimited access to new hardware but both budget and responsible sourcing restrict our ambition to have access to the best IT. Adding the buyback value of your old hardware to the kitty helps you to afford new kit and you can upgrade with a clear conscience. TEKrefresh has been helping clients to realise the value of their old or unused IT equipment for the last 18 years. We also ensure that all data is securely wiped during the recycling process keeping you compliant with regulations.

  • 2 - Don’t underestimate the value of your old equipment

When we get a brand-new device, we don’t give much thought to the value of the components in the one we’ve just made redundant. Did you know that elements such as aluminium, copper, silver and gold can be found in most PCs and its peripherals? If the components themselves don’t get re-used, the elements they are made from can be stripped down and used again. That’s worth bearing in mind if you are currently paying for your IT waste to be removed – you can bet your supplier is making their money twice over by stripping and reselling your assets.

  • 3 - If you are worried about toxic landfill this is an easy win

Landfills are growing at a terrifying rate all around the world and we’re going to run out of land to convert into dumping grounds. By recycling your IT you’re helping to reduce the overall volume of waste that is sent to landfill and minimising the space needed to bury it. Amazingly, there is approximately only 2% of the materials in your computer that cannot be recycled. A staggering 98% can be repurposed in some positive way! Most people don’t even know about the small and highly toxic CMOS battery which is present in every type of PC and tablet. So if 98% is recycled and the remaining 2% is managed with specialist disposal the combined result is a massive reduction in landfill and toxicity.

  • 4 - Using less fossil fuels is good for everyone

Making new equipment uses up fossil fuels and the manufacturing process itself creates pollution. Reusing the materials in your devices to make new products helps to reduce our reliance on fossil fuels and our global carbon footprint. Check out this astonishing statistic, from the United States Environmental Protection Agency – “for every one million laptops recycled, we are saving the same amount of energy it takes to power 3,500 homes in the U.S. for a whole year.”

  • 5 - Less pollution is good for every living thing on our planet

Less toxic waste is good for every eco-system on the planet and will benefit humans, animals, insects and plant life. By recycling computer hardware, you can help to keep our air and water cleaner and free of pollutants. IT equipment contains chemicals such as lead, mercury, beryllium and cadmium which all release harmful toxins when buried in landfill. Decomposing rubbish also produces carbon dioxide, methane and nitrous oxide which all contribute to the air pollution that causes respiratory disease. Recycling is the most effective, simple and instant pathway to a cleaner and healthier environment. Recycling also reduces our reliance on damaging waste management techniques like incineration. We’ve all experienced that feel good factor when we remember to recycle something rather than just throwing it in the kitchen bin. So why not do the same at work and improve your physical and mental wellbeing?

  • 6 - Less manufacturing means less emissions and cleaner air

Making new products from raw materials uses much more energy than making them from recycled materials. Reusing the component materials of recycled products means less manufacturing and ensures we get the maximum use from products that have already been made. Not having to make these materials all over again minimises energy consumption and overall environmental impact.

  • 7 - Help to raise much needed money for good causes

There are so many causes that could benefit in some way from your old kit - please give it rather than bin it! You can choose to donate the revenue generated from device recycling to a charity of your choice or to give your old devices to an organisation that can put them to good use. We’ve helped our clients do this by preparing ‘ready to use’ devices for schools in Africa. Whole classes have benefited giving hundreds of school children access to educational resources that we take for granted. Now more than ever with the Covid crisis, there is a burning need for underprivileged children to access remote learning - donating an old laptop or tablet is a really easy way to make a big difference.