The average American gets a new computer every five to ten years, which means you have plenty of time to plan ahead for what to do when it’s time to give your current device up.
These are the best ways to pass on your current computer and how they can benefit both you and the world.
Sell Your Computer
The most common thing most people do when they’re upgrading their computer is sell it. Selling your computer ensures that you can recover some of the money you put into it and then turn around and use that money on a future computer or device. Depending on the age of your computer, it may not be worth much, but if it is, it’s a good idea to try to sell it to someone who will give you a fair price. You’re not going to be able to sell it for the price you bought it, but you shouldn’t allow yourself to get short on what it’s worth.
Donate Your Computer
Donating your computer is an awesome choice for anyone who doesn’t necessarily care to sell it but isn’t sure that it’s in bad enough condition to simply be recycled. Contact local organizations in your area that work with schools or low-income individuals, and see if your computer can be put to use. Make sure that regardless of how you pass your computer on, you completely clear all of your information off of it so that it can’t be used by a future owner of the computer.
Recycle Your Computer
From recycling at a classic plant to instead e-waste recycling, there are tons of options available to anyone replacing their computers. The best benefit of recycling your computer is that you can ensure every part that can be used will be used. Most e-waste recyclers understand that even if the computer as a whole is nonfunctional, they can still save some parts to ensure not everything goes to waste. This is a great way to keep your conscience and the planet clean.
Gift Your Computer
Consider giving your computer away to a family or loved one who needs one. Although this isn’t always the best option, you can change the trajectory of a young person’s life by giving them a computer they can use for class or art. Although you shouldn’t be surprised if the computer isn’t well taken care of by the new owner, it’s making a very positive impact on their life all the same.
When to Trash It
Sometimes a computer simply isn’t salvageable, and it’s important to admit to yourself where that line is. If the screen is broken, there’s moisture or insects inside of it, or it’s over twenty years old, it’s a good idea to go ahead and discard it in a safe way that’s allowed by your local laws. Some have specific rules in place for electronics, so research this to avoid any fines or fees.
Your Computer Doesn’t Stop Being Useful.
Just because you’re done using this computer doesn’t mean it can’t be put to further use. Consider donating, selling, or recycling your computer so that it can start a new life.