The tech industry is booming. Now more than ever before, technology companies are churning out tech devices with increasing capabilities. The innovation is wonderful for our businesses, but do you ever wonder what happens to all the outdated, no-longer-used computer equipment?
Recycling Computer Equipment Cuts Down on E-Waste
Electronic equipment that is thrown away is often referred to as e-waste. As you can imagine, it’s becoming a big environmental issue. A 2019 January report from the World Economic Forum estimates e-waste reached 50 million tons in 2018. That’s the equivalent of 125,000 jumbo jets. Roughly half of that e-waste is personal devices, such as computers, screens, smartphones, and tablets.
Given that e-waste is expected to reach 120 million tons by the year 2050, it makes sense to start recycling it. In addition to cutting down on e-waste, when you recycle electronic equipment, the parts can be refurbished. Schools, charitable organizations, and low-income families who might not otherwise be able to afford technology can benefit.
Tips on Recycling Your Computers
Before you take your equipment in, it’s important to ensure that the hard drive is “wiped” clean so that all your personal and business information is completely removed.
The local recycling companies in Seattle offer hard drive destruction service. For a fee the drive is physically destroyed. This is the surest way to ensure your data is not recoverable.
They also say the drive is reformatted if repurposed, but I don’t trust that data is truly wiped since it is time-consuming to do a reformat of the drive in such a way as to wipe it clean. We recommend paying to have the drive physically destroyed. When the team at Alton Computer Solutions manages computer recycling, we remove the hard drive and hand it to the customer so they have the option to save it or destroy it.
Places to Recycle Computer Equipment in Seattle
Due to hazardous substances in electronics such as mercury and lead, recycling the equipment can be complex. It’s important to take it to an organization that knows how to manage it properly.
There are several areas here in Seattle that you can recycle computer equipment. Some of our favorites are listed below. You can call and schedule a pickup for bulk items.
- InterConnection.org: http://interconnection.org. They have been my longtime go-to for recycling. They do pickups and have a store in Fremont.
- RE PC: http://repc.com. RE PC boasts that they are the largest and oldest computer retail recycler in the Pacific Northwest. They have recycled thousands of tons of computer material since 1994.
- 3R Technology: http://3rtechnology.com. 3R Technology is a certified recycling facility, providing secure logistics and environmentally sound processing for businesses throughout the Pacific NW. They also offer a mobile shredding service that can come to your office, data center, or server room to securely destroy your hard drives and other media – both magnetic and optical.
Let Us Know If You Need Help Recycling Your Equipment
If you’d rather hand off the job to professionals, the team at Alton Computer Solutions can help. Our team manages the process of recycling older computers and monitors for our customers when we upgrade equipment.
Just give us a call to learn more at 206-782-4035