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How to recycle your old devices

A lot of us probably have dead batteries and broken cables tucked away in the corners of our drawers. One fine day, you decide to clean your drawers, and all these small pieces end up in the dump along with your other waste. This happens since most of us don’t know what else to do with this waste. However, by just dumping it along with other waste, you are contributing to e-waste and causing more harm to the environment.

We all study the benefits of recycling waste, but only a few of us actually practice it. Improperly disposed electronics usually pile up in landfills, and this doesn’t just leave behind plastic waste, but also pollutes the environment by leaking toxins into the soil and groundwater. These electronic wastes contain toxic materials like lead, chromium, which can over time cause serious damage to our health. As responsible citizens, it is our duty to take care that these electronics are disposed of in an eco-friendly way, so that future generations do not suffer from our actions.

If you are wondering what you can do to properly recycle electronics, this article will give insights on how to dispose of your old gadgets in the right way. Let’s look at some common and effective ways for recycling electronic devices.

Also read: Work from home essentials guide

Give back to Brands:

Brands usually take an effort on their end to minimize e-waste and recycle electronics. This is why a lot of brands now have their own recycling and e-waste collection initiatives. While many of them provide exchange offers, you can even deposit your old electronics with them so that the manufacturers can recycle them at their plants.

For example, in the case of mobiles, while it is one of the most essential parts of our lives right now, we do not give it a great funeral on its death. Up to 80 percent of a phone is recyclable, so leaving it in your drawer for years, or throwing it in your bin is an absolute waste of its after-life potential. Mobile phones also contain a lot of materials like plastics, metals, etc. that can be re-used easily.

Check out these buy-back programs by One plus India and simple recycling steps by MI. Similarly, you can find guidelines from any brand that you have purchased your phone from. Apple IN also has a recycling program which they will do for free, to recycle your Apple device.

Even for laptops, brands provide easy recycling programs, one example is this program by Lenovo India wherein consumers can call on their toll-free number, write them an email, or find the nearest collection center to drop off e-waste safely. Similarly, Dell also has a list of e-waste collection centers and easy guidelines on replacement and recycling.

Online recycling services:

If you still find this a hassle, there are also a number of sites online that help you recycle electronics like your old phones without leaving your home. One such example is cashify.com; they will not only pick up your device from your home but also give you vouchers in return. They also plant a tree for every device recycled!

Another site called Recycledevice.com will also let you either sell your old electronic devices, refurbish the used ones or recycle your dead devices with free doorstep pickup and instant payment.

Sell them online: 

If your gadgets are even in subpar working conditions, you can always opt to sell them online. These are some sure shot ways to recycle electronics and at the same time earn some easy money. You can opt for the popular C2C selling platforms like Olx.com, where you sell your old products to other customers. Or you can also opt for specialized gadget selling and exchange platforms. Some examples are Budli.in where you can sell your gadgets like used mobiles, laptops, and tablets for a good quote. Another site is Sahivalue.com, where you can also sell your working or dead gadgets like mobile, tablet, laptop, smartwatch, AirPods, etc, and thereby recycle devices safely.

Exchange offers for high-end devices online:

One way you can profit out of recycling is through exchange offers available online. If your phone is not older than a year, you can easily get a good exchange price for your phones, laptops, headphones, etc. Also, depending on your brand, you can easily get a discount of over Rs.5,000 if you sell it early enough.

Contact electronic selling shops:

The most common and easiest way for you to recycle electronics would be to give it back to local electronics shops. Almost all electronic local shops would be ready to take back any old gadget or electronic device. They usually have tie-ups with brands and other dismantle centers, so you can rest assured that the waste will not end up in the wrong place. You might not get any monetary benefits from this, but hey, at least you are doing a noble task.

Dispose of E-waste properly:

For small electronic items like batteries, charger wires, etc. that are of no use anymore; you can dispose of them in the right manner. There are plenty of ways that e-waste can be disposed of, and the government is taking initiatives every day to make it more accessible and known.

Most of the big cities have public e-waste drop-off points. These can be maintained by Brands like Dell, or by NGOs. For example, a startup called SAAHAS keeps yellow bins to dump any sort of e-waste. You find their nearest drop-off point here. You can even use Dunzo for delivering your waste to them from the comfort of your home or workplace!

Similarly, if you live in a society or complex, you can take the initiative of arranging a one-time pick-up or routine collection. This can be a more convenient way of disposing of e-waste, and ensure everyone in your society also follows the steps to e-waste disposal.

The contact number of some e-waste service providers are as mentioned below: 

    • BMC E-Waste Centre (Mumbai): 1800-102-1020
    • SAAHAS (Bengaluru & Other Indian Cities) : 7349737586
    • Namo E-Wate (Delhi): 1800-123-512

Other Dos and Don’ts:


  • Ensure that you drop your used electronic products, batteries, or any accessories at the nearest authorized e-waste collection points.
  • When your gadget dies, disconnect the battery from the product before disposal
  • Delete any confidential information/ data that you may have stored on your computer or mobile device before disposal


  • Don’t give e-waste to Local Scrap Dealer/ Rag Pickers/ Kabadiwalas. They do not ensure the safe disposal of your e-waste.
  • Do not mix e-waste with your regular household waste 
  • Look out for products with this symbol. If you find it, do not throw or mix this product with municipality waste.
  • Do not dispose of e-waste in municipal bins marked as ‘dry’ waste. There are dedicated bins for electronic wastes, so make sure you use them alone.
  • Don’t keep electronic products that you haven’t used or are unusable for too long. You might be able to resell it at a good price


Looking at how our entire lives are now revolving around devices, it is important that we make recycling a part of our lifestyle. While governments and NGOs across countries are taking initiative to implement proper systems, recycling actually starts from your home. If you take the first step to recycle devices on your own, overall we will be able to see a huge difference in the way electronic waste is being handled. Remember when you grow older, you will be held responsible and answerable to your future generations. Let’s make efforts to build a sustainable and toxin-free environment for ourselves and our future.