Most households own a few or more small appliances. We use them every day to make life easier. Making toast in the morning, blending your favorite drink, making yourself a cup of coffee, and even ironing your clothes to make you look presentable. Almost anywhere we look, we have a bunch of small appliances we use on a daily basis.
However, just like all other devices, they need to be replaced when they’re not functional anymore. Although built to last long, there would always come a time when you need to let them go. So, how to recycle small appliances? Unlike the bulky ones, small appliances can be challenging to recycle. Most recycling companies prefer huge appliances due to their bigger metal content- which is the material usually recycled. However, small appliances are made of many complex parts and may only have a small amount of metal.
How to recycle small appliances depends on your local recycling services. They do have a list of devices they only accept. Check with them first so that you know if you can recycle or dispose of them. Another option is to also have someone reuse it if it’s still in good working condition.
Preparing your Small Appliances for Recycling
How to recycle small appliances begins with preparation. To prepare your small appliances for recycling, follow the steps below:
- Make sure to unplug your small appliances for a few days before recycling. This will ensure all parts, including the metal parts, are totally cooled down before disassembly.
- Tie the power cord for heavier appliances like microwaves or bread makers. Tape them into the unit to prevent accidental trips. They can also pose serious injury when they fall over your feet.
- If you opt to update on your appliances, and your old one doesn’t have any issues, think about donating it instead. Give it a good clean before handing it over to a charity of your choice.
- Removable parts not made of metal won’t be accepted in the recycling facility. So save yourself the effort and remove them prior to recycling.
Recycling Small Appliances
- Coordinate with your local recycling stations if they accept any appliance that you want to dispose of. Although they mostly accept bigger appliances, you can still try your luck, and maybe they can accept a few appliances you have.
- Some organizations, as mentioned above, accept small appliances for donation. These groups or charities sell the appliances and put the money to good use by supporting underprivileged individuals. The good thing about donating is they can pick up the appliances for free, so you won’t need to think about hauling.
- For broken appliances, you can post them online on platforms like Craigslist or Freecycle. These websites connect people from different locations, looking for various things. Some people might just be looking for the parts included in your appliance. So posting them online can help you connect to others who might still need them.
- Local colleges or theater groups can also use your broken appliances for school projects or theater props. Connect with different groups to see if you have something they need.
- Contact your local salvage yard and have them check the appliances you have at home. If you happen to have many small appliances lying around, the accumulated metal can still be put to good use. Call them to check if what you have can still be salvaged even for a small fee.
Aside from the fact that you get to do your share to help the environment, learning how to recycle small appliances can be beneficial for the community as a whole. Appliances are generally made of steel, and home appliances make at least 10% of the overall steel recycled yearly. That means more steel can be reused, and there’s less waste.
Some appliances also contain computer chips with precious metals like gold. On the other hand, most electronic devices contain copper, which is a valuable material we can reuse over again. Recycling allows these materials to be put in good use rather than ending up in a landfill. Here’s how to learn more about recycling appliances.
How to recycle small appliances can be quite challenging, given the limited option you have. However, if you want to do your part, the tips above can definitely put your trash to much better use.