What to do with Those Old Computer Parts

Thursday, August 13, 2009 ·

Recycling Computers, Monitors, Parts
Here in the Valley we have Allied Waste located in Albany, and they will take most of the computers and electronic stuff. They get a little unhappy if you bring in a truckload, but a few parts or a PC & monitor are fine. Just drive over to their site and you can drop it off in Albany, near the Train Yards. Allied Waste is located at - 1214 SE Montgomery St, Albany OR, 541-928-2551.

Staples has a program now that you drop off your electronics and they bag it up and send it to a recycler. There is no charge for mice, keyboards and smaller stuff, and they charge $10 for the larger stuff (you will have to check with them what they consider larger!)
Staples will also give you $3 Staples Rewards back towards ink purchase for recycling printer ink cartridges. Not bad, considering many people just throw them out. Every buck saved helps!
Laptops & Notebooks

Laptops have many special considerations, including the battery and the LCD monitor. Both of these things are very bad for the environment, and should be recycled. Sometimes people are willing to pay for a broken laptop, if there are some good parts on it. The problem is, usually when someone is getting rid of a laptop, it is usually really broken bad, or just an old dog that is not worth anything.

Here is a website with more information on good recycling practices for computers and electronics. They also list the manufacturers & retailers and their different programs.

How to deal with the Hard Drive and your Personal Info
With any computer that has a hard drive, the hard drive contains your personal information, even if you have deleted it. Many recovery programs can not only recover files that have been deleted, but even when the hard drive has been "erased" and reformatted! Special precautions have to be taken to remove data completely. Either the drive needs to be destroyed (think big Sledge hammer for you hulkamaniacs) or a special program is run to write 1s and 0s over the entire drive over and over erasing the data completely.

Batteries
You should not throw batteries of any kind in the trash. Watch, camera, computer and cell phone batteries are all bad for the environment and should be recycled. Radio Shack and staples both have great recycling program for batteries. That includes AA's to laptop batteries. Save up those AAs and turn them in next time you are out and about near one of these stores.

Software
There really is no good option for CDs and old floppies. Most old software is pretty useless, and so are the material they are on. They both contain plastic, and really are not recyclable. However, the CDs make for great bird deterrents in the garden or other weird stuff you can do with CDs!

See also
computer optimization
Printing to Public Computers
Windows Live One Care Help You
Will Your Device Work with Windows 7

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