Definition:  Computers and peripherals (e.g., printers, scanners, ZIP drives, keyboards), phones, cameras, televisions, fax machines, portable gaming devices, video equipment, audio equipment, etc.

Donation and Recycling Locations

E-cycling is the Law: Virginia law requires any manufacturer that sells (or offers for sale) more than 500 units of computer equipment in the state to provide an opportunity for customers to return or recycle their equipment at no charge. Find out what your brand offers.

Also see the Environmental Protection Agency's E-cycling List.

Specific Types of Electronics:

More Information

Before Donating or Recycling Your Used Electronics:

  • Delete all personal information from your electronic device before recycling it.
  • Remove any batteries from your electronics as they may need to be recycled separately.
  • Rather than buying a brand new computer or laptop, consider upgrading the hardware or software on your existing device instead.
Why are proper recycling and/or disposal of electronics important?

Electronic products are made from metal, plastics, and glass -- all of which require energy to mine and manufacture. Reusing and recycling these materials conserves natural resources. In addition, many electronics contain lead, mercury, beryllium and cadmium. If improperly disposed of, these contaminants may be released into the environment.   

What happens to the electronics after they are collected?

When possible, electronics are refurbished and/or resold.  In some cases, electronics are disassembled, sorted by material (metals, plastics, glass, etc.) and sold on the recyclables market. Hazardous components, such as leaded glass in certain computer monitors or TVs, are removed and sent for proper recovery and recycling in a permitted hazardous waste facility.

Are there special electronics management guidelines for businesses?

Yes. Businesses are legally responsible for managing all toxic materials that are used and/or stored on site. Electronic equipment and rechargeable batteries fall in this category. Business owners and managers should visit the Know Toxics website for more information.   

See Also:
A-Z List of Recycling and Trash Topics
Materials for Recycling or Disposal

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