8 Common Devices that Become eWaste

pile of electronics

When household or commercial electronic devices are thrown away in the trash, they become eWaste. Not only is doing so illegal in the State of New York, but the materials in these products may also be potentially toxic to the local ecosystem. Additionally, they could still retain accessible data that can be retrieved by someone with the right skills and equipment.

Instead of throwing away electronics, they should be recycled or refurbished to extend their lifespan for new or current owners. Valuable metals, electronic components, and other manufacturing materials can be salvaged and repurposed for manufacturing new products.

If you are considering throwing away a device, read this first. We are going to review 8 of the most common devices that become electronic waste.

1: Personal Computers and Laptops

Personal computers and laptops are one of the most common types of electronic waste. They can become outdated quickly, which leads to people frequently buying new ones and throwing the old ones away.

Computers contain a variety of materials, including metals like copper, aluminum, gold, and silver. They also have plastic parts. When these materials end up in a landfill, they can leach toxins into the soil and water.

Computers also often contain sensitive data, like financial information or personal files. If these devices are not properly wiped before they’re disposed of, that data could be accessed and used by someone else.

2: Smartphones

Like laptops, smartphones are also frequently replaced and contain highly sensitive personal data. They usually end up in the same places as other types of eWaste, like landfills and incinerators.

Smartphones contain many of the same materials as laptops and computers. They also have a battery, which can leak harmful chemicals if not disposed of properly.

Thankfully, smartphones can be easily recycled or refurbished. A professional data destruction service can help ensure that either the storage devices on the phone are obliterated or overwritten with all of your personal information rendered truly removed and no longer accessible.

3: Tablets

Tablets are another common type of electronic waste. They often have a rather short lifespan similar to smartphones. As such, they are also often replaced every few years.

Many of the core computing components of tablets can be recycled and repurposed for manufacturing new models. For example, the aluminum casing of an iPad can be melted down and reused to create a new tablet.

Tablets also often contain lithium-ion batteries. These types of batteries are known to explode if not disposed of properly. That is why it is so important to recycle tablets instead of throwing them away in the trash.

4: Video Game Consoles

Though older video game consoles are in high demand on the secondhand market, some people still choose to throw them away when a new one is released. These systems not only contain valuable components like semiconductors, but newer ones may also contain personal financial data like memberships to online services, video streaming accounts, and more.

5: Home Audio Equipment

Home audio equipment like receivers, stereos, and speakers are often replaced when new technology becomes available. Many of these products contain metals that can be reused in the manufacturing process of new models. For example, the copper used in wiring speakers is a precious resource that can be used in creating new models.

6: Televisions

Whenever a television has reached the end of its lifespan, many users decide to throw them away. A broken screen is another common reason for many to simply opt to purchase a newer model.

However, like many of the devices listed above, most modern smart TVs contain some amount of sensitive personal information within their software. This can create additional privacy risks while also preventing valuable recyclable materials from being reused.

7: Printers

Printers are one of the most commonly recycled types of electronics. They often contain metals like steel, aluminum, and copper. These materials can be melted down and repurposed in the manufacturing process of new printers or other products.

Ink cartridges can also be recycled, and many office supply stores have a recycling program for empty ones. Depending on the ink’s chemical makeup, traces could seep into the soil of a landfill and further contaminate the local ecosystem.

8: Computer Accessories

Computer accessories like keyboards and mice are another type of product that are replaced on a frequent basis, especially in commercial offices. In many cases, keyboards and mice retain the same core components, while their external features may receive cosmetic or functional upgrades. The metals, plastics, and chips within them can easily be reintroduced into the manufacturing processes for new models.

Recycle Your Electronics with ProTek Today

At ProTek Recycling, we offer a wide range of electronic recycling solutions to help protect your local environment and ensure that precious materials are able to be reused in future manufacturing operations. Offering pickup services in the New York, New Jersey, Boston, and Connecticut, we can also perform data destruction services to ensure that your personal information remains safe and out of reach from unauthorized parties.

To learn more about how we can assist you in preventing your electronic devices from becoming eWaste, contact us today.

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