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How to: recycling electronics

Consumer electronics have different “life spans” – for example, a smart phone is 18 months, while a television is 10-plus years.

If your tech product is still in good condition, you should consider reselling or donating it to your local school, retirement home and/or community center. You might be surprised how valuable your “old” device is to someone else.

Another option is recycling (“eCycling”). GreenerGadgets.org has a ZIP code search tool to help you find a recycling location near you. Here’s a list of several eCycling programs:

∎ Panasonic offers a plan for recycling of Toughbook mobile computers that have reached the end of their life-cycle. The process works the same for all customers and is free of charge.

∎ Digital Links has distributed over 50,000 reused computers to the developing world and provided access to technology for more than 125,000 individuals.

∎ Close the Gap makes reused and refurbished computers available to underprivileged individuals in developing countries.

∎ Staples offers cash for printer cartridges and, in partnership with HP, provides free electronics recycling for all brands of office electronics (excludes TVs) at stores across the United States.

∎ Recyclebank offers a points system for recycling, which you can then use for discounts and merchandise. The site boasts more than 2 million users.

∎ e-Cycle purchases mobile phones and tablets for reuse and recycling.

∎ Gazelle.com has paid out $25 million for consumer electronics.

∎ Amazon.com offers gift cards through its electronics trade-in program.

∎ Best Buy offers a cash mail-in or in store trade-in program.

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