It is estimated that a person buys a new cell phone every 15 to 18 months. As a result, cell phones create about 60,000 tons of electronics that need to be recycled somehow. Remember, cell phones contain lithium-ion batteries that can be harmful to the environment. But, they also contain metals that can be reused. This is why it is hard to know how to safely recycle a cell phone
. Some states have strict laws about throwing an old cell phone in the trash, in fact depending on what state you live in, it may be illegal. Some companies will allow you to trade in your old cell phone for reselling or for recycling. But, do you know how to recycle cell phones in bulk? Read further as we discuss what the options are to recycle cell phones in bulk, and what parts of the cell phone can actually be reused.
What Parts of a Cell Phone Can Be Recycled
Most of a cell phone is made up with plastic, but some smartphones contain aluminum. These materials, which make up the bulk of a cell phone, can be recycled. Cell phone plastic is actually considered a useful commodity, and recyclers will buy it to resell it downstream. Two materials that make up a cell phone require a gentle handling. First, cell phones contain lithium-ion batteries which are composed of zinc, nickel, and cadmium. These metals are easy to recycle, but they must be recycled in the proper way, as they should not be sitting around in large quantities. Manufacturers of batteries have dedicated programs for recycling batteries. Then, recyclers can pull the metals from the old batteries to make new ones. The other metal that is precious in a cell phone is gold, which is located in the circuit board. Cell Phone Recycler’s
will remove the gold for resale. Cell phone accessories like chargers can be recycled as well.
Recycle or Reuse Cell Phones
There are many smartphones that have enough value to be resold and reused. There are recycling companies that will make minor repairs to an old smartphone so they are in good enough condition to resell. There are many non-profit companies that fix old cell phones so they can donate them to people in need. So, if helping out people in need appeals to you, you may want to consider going this route. Make sure that you backup your personal information, and transfer it to your new cell phone before you recycle the old phone.
Recycle in Bulk at a Designated Recycling Center
If your old cellphone is too damaged or outdated to resell and reuse, consider dropping it off or sending it to a designated recycling center. There are many states that offer a curbside pickup of bulk cell phones. If you are uncertain about whether your state offers this or not, check with your local recycling agency for details. The key is to find out what your state offers in the way of curbside pickup for recycling cell phones
. Certain states only offer curbside pickup on certain dates.