How to Get Rid of Old Electronics

Get Rid of Old Electronics

Getting rid of electronics is not as easy as getting rid of all the other stuff you no longer want.  Most of us are aware of the harm that carelessly discarded items cause to the environment and have changed our behaviours for unwanted household items like furniture – selling or donating. But many don’t think the same way about old electronics that have been replaced, stopped working, or just not wanted anymore.

Knowing how to get rid of old electronics can be a challenge. So far too often, they’re just dumped into the garbage, especially small items like cell phones. For bigger items like old computers, it isn’t always easy to find out where to get rid of them.   

Why Putting Electronics into the Garbage is a Bad Idea

Just about all electronics contain toxic materials that are hazardous to the environment. We’re not just talking about computers. Electronics also include:

  • Phones
  • Chargers
  • TVs
  • Cables
  • Media players
  • Smart lightbulbs

Electronics contain heavy metals, including lead, mercury, arsenic, which leak into the ground when the items are dumped. 

Electronics also contain precious materials that are too valuable to be thrown away, such as gold, silver, copper, and palladium. Recycling the electronics instead of throwing them away allows the materials to be recovered and reused.

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4 Great Ways to Dispose of your Old Electronics

Using these ways for getting rid of electronics will help you ensure you’re doing the best for the future of mankind and the planet. The 4 ways are:

  • Recycle
  • Sell
  • Donate
  • Trade-in


Let’s explore the ways to get rid of old electronics in more detail.

Precious Metals and Elements

How to get rid of old electronics that don’t work and can’t be repaired? Recycling is a great and relatively easy option. Using the internet, you can easily find out where to get rid of old electronics near you. 

There are some options for how to get rid of old electronics that you want to recycle:

  • Take them to a municipal recycling site
    • Many local authorities run recycling sites where you can take your old electronics. 
  • Arrange for collection
    • Some authorities have a helpline number that you can call and ask where to get rid of e-waste / old electronics. Some, like in Toronto, run a collection service. All you leave the electronics outside your property on an agreed collection day. 
    • If you have a lot of equipment to dispose of, specialist recyclers like TechReset can arrange to collect from you. Depending on what the items are, you can check to see what they are worth. TechReset will pay you for recycling your old electronics. Getting rid of old electronics in this way requires the least effort from you!
  • Contact a specialist e-waste recycling provider
    • Companies like TechReset are experts in how to get rid of old electronics. If you have lots of surplus IT equipment then contacting us will be your best option.
  • Contact the manufacturer or retailer
    • Manufacturers and retailers can also be an option for where to get rid of old electronics. Some of them run recycling services for items that they refurbish for resale or spare parts.
  • Take them back to the store
  • Some larger retailers are another option for how to get rid of old electronics, even large items like TVs. This is different to a trade-in, as you won’t get any money back, but it can be an easy option for getting rid of electronics if you’re going near the store anyway.
  • Community recycling
  • Many communities run recycling schemes making it easy to get rid of old electronics. Surplus items are collected or can be taken to a collection point.  This can be a great way to get rid of a lot of old electronics and at the same time help your local community.  

Tip: Before you drop off your items or get them collected, you delete any data and remove things like memory cards to stop your information from getting into the wrong hands. Using a specialist recycler like TechReset is the only way to guarantee that all your personal data is completely erased when getting rid of electronics.

Sell them

If you are used to using computers, then selling your old electronics is probably easier than you think!  There are plenty of options available to you for where to get rid of old electronics and at the same time give you some money back.

  • Specialist recyclers
  • Specialist recyclers like TechReset will give you the best price for your old electronics. They will also ensure that all your data is securely and completely erased, giving you peace of mind. TechReset will give you a prompt valuation for your unwanted equipment and will arrange to collect it at a time that suits you. 
  • Online
  • For home consumers, selling online is a popular choice for where to get rid of old electronics. 
  • Widely used auction sites like eBay have separate sections for getting rid of old electronics, but you will be charged fees based on the selling price. Fans of old electronics often use these auction sites to get spare parts or to add rare models to their collection – values of old or limited-edition computers and phones can be much higher than you think!
  • Social media sites like Facebook Marketplace have buy and sell sections that are free to use, but you set the price yourself, and they have limited functionality. 
  • There are also e-commerce sites that are dedicated to selling electronics, such as SellBroke, Gone, and Decluttr, offering user-friendly apps and websites where you can sell your old electronics. 
  • Friends
  • A great way of getting rid of surplus electronics is to let your friends know that you have something for sale. You’d be surprised just how easy selling to a friend can be, though they might expect a discount!

Tip: The best time to sell old electronics like phones is before new models are launched, as this floods the market with traded in phones that the new model has replaced.


Both in Canada and wider afield, there are many people and good causes that could benefit from the donation of old electronics, including

  • Students
  • Community groups
  • Veterans
  • Low-income families

….and more

As well as feeling good about donating, you also might be eligible for tax breaks depending on the value, the gift, and your circumstances.

Obviously, you should only donate items that work. Phones are the most popular item for donations, as they are in demand and are easy to donate. 

Even very old working phones can be donated. There are charities that specialize in refurbishing these for use in the third world. 

Tip: Always make sure that your personal information and data is wiped from a device before you donate it.  


This last method can save you money on new electronics. Some manufacturers run permanent trade-in schemes; others only have them as short-term promotions to boost sales of new products. The trade-in value usually changes according to supply and demand 

For example, trade-in values when buying a new phone can be between $70 and $300 depending on what you are buying and the age & condition of what you are trading in.

Tip:  Trade-in values are usually highest against newly launched models. Manufacturers know that this increases sales volumes.

 Whatever way you decide to get rid of old electronics, it’s always a good idea to speak to professionals for advice and guidance. Contact us to discuss your needs.

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