How to Recycle and Dispose Appliances, Batteries, Electronics, and More

The average American produces 4.51 pounds of garbage a day, according to the Environmental protection agency (EPA) – and only 35% of this waste is recycled or composted. That’s almost 140 million tons of waste that goes to landfill every year! While most of us know that we have to put our cans and bottles in the blue trash can for recyclingDisposal can be a little more difficult when it comes to other things like devices, electronics, and old medication – which is why if you work on some Spring cleaningIt is so important to know how to properly dispose of these items.

Before you finally throw something away, it is of course a good first step to always donate items (in good, working condition) nonprofit organizations and charities to like Goodwill, Habitat for humanity, the Salvation Armyor local charities; or list them Craigslist, Ebay, or also Facebook. But when it’s time that your items really hit the streets, it’s important to know how to dispose of them all in one environmentally friendly Path; After all, a little bit is enough when it comes to that Be green. So if you are wondering what exactly you should do with these old batteries or outdated electronic devices that you will find cleaning your house this year, here is a practical guide from A to Z on everything that you can dispose of responsibly:


Batteries of all kinds can be recycled. According to Duracell, Ordinary disposable alkaline batteries (e.g. those that power our remote controls) can be safely trashed anywhere except California;; However, a more environmentally friendly way of disposal is to recycle them in community programs, at the workplace, or in nearby recycling centers that they accept.

However, rechargeable batteries (e.g. in cell phones and other electronic devices) should not be thrown in the trash and recycledbecause they can contain dangerous chemicals. Be sure to check this to find a nearby recycling point for all types of batteries Call2Recycle and – and before you recycle them, make sure that non-conductive tape is placed over the ends or terminals of the battery to ensure safe recycling.


If you are trying to get rid of unwanted books, you should donate them first. Many charities, libraries, schools, and even prisons and shelters accept donations for used books all year round. This includes some large organizations – many of which have nationwide delivery points Better world books, Books for soldiers, and Books for Africa (as well as second hand stores like Goodwill or The Salvation Army). Of course, you can also try selling them on websites like Amazon or BookScouterespecially if you have textbooks.

However, if your books are hopelessly chipped, they can sometimes be recycled. According to, You can recycle the entire book if it is a paperback. However, if you’re trying to dispose of a bound book, you’ll need to remove the cover binding before recycling. And keep in mind that if your book got wet (or if the papers turned brown or brown), it should instead be thrown away with your normal rubbish, as unfortunately this doesn’t make the material recyclable.

How to dispose of everything

Anna Cinaroglu / EyeEmGetty Images

cleaning supplies

The best way to dispose of cleaning supplies is to use it! If this is out of the question, it is important to read the labels to find out how to properly throw them. Be sure to read the bottle’s instructions for proper disposal. Note: In most cases, water-soluble products (such as bleaching) can be flushed into the drain or toilet with running water, and solid detergents such as soap bars and scouring pads can get into the trash. If you recycle the bottles for cleaning products that can be disposed of on the train, you must empty all of the unused product and rinse it once or twice before throwing it in the trash.

Coffee pods

If you love your single-serve machine, you can take measures to eliminate the environmental impact. Nespresso offers capsule recycling at more than 122,000 locations worldwide. Visit a Nespresso boutique or partner store (including Sur La Table and Williams Sonoma) or pick up a free pod recycling bag Online with a prepaid UPS shipping label.

To the K cupsSome varieties (including the Green Mountain variety) can be recycled, although the company will start making all pods recyclable in late 2020. First, check to see if there is a recycling mark # 5 below before removing the lids and tossing them away along with the bottom (although the filter can remain). Then recycle the empty cup – but first check it on site, as K-Cup bowls are not yet recyclable in all communities.

How to dispose of everything

patronizingGetty Images


  • Cell phones: Before you get rid of your old cell phone, first delete all your personal data with a factory or hard reset option. (See the manufacturer’s website for more information.) You also want to remove or delete the SIM or SD card. Then you can exchange, donate or recycle your device – usually directly in the store. For example, AT&T runs the charity Cell phones for soldiers that donates devices to troops overseas. You can also search for e-cycling locations near you with this database, including private recyclers, nonprofits, and other programs.
  • TV: Don’t throw your old TV or monitor in the trash! Some old sets contain toxic substances like lead and count as Hazardous waste. Best Buy, LG, Vizio, Samsung, and Sony all offer TV recycling programs (either in-store, event, drop-off site and hol-away options). You can also contact your local sanitary department for more information.
  • Laptops and computers: Check out Dell Reconnect, World Computer Exchange, and eBay for charity If you are interested in donating your device. Similar to TVs, you should recycle them responsibly. Therefore, contact the manufacturer or dealer to find out if they are helpful.


Before you throw away your old, outdated glasses, you should first send them to organizations such as OneSight, Lion’s Club, or New eyeswho take old glasses to distribute to the needy. Since glasses can be made of different materials, recycling is a bit difficult. Therefore, a donation may be the best (and most sustainable) bet. However, if you need to dispose of them, you’ll need to separate the lenses from the frames. If your frames are made of aluminumYou may be able to pull them apart (and place them in a larger aluminum container) for roadside recycling. Make sure you check this first by contacting your recycling center or local authority.

How to dispose of everything
JohnnyGreigGetty Images

domestic appliances

  • Washing machines and dryers: If they are still in good condition, donate them to an animal shelter or home that you would likely benefit from. If you buy new Laundry equipmentAsk the manufacturer if they are certified to recycle your old ones. If all else fails, call your local waste disposal office to see if you can leave it by the roadside or check out for more options.
  • Fridges and freezers: Leave the disposal of these powerful devices to the experts. Contact or use your local public works department to plan the distance RAD side (EPA Responsible Appliance Disposal) to find a partner program near you. The cost of this service varies. According to the EPAThe removal can cost between $ 10 and $ 50. However, you may receive a discount for responsible disposal of your device. Result!
  • Microwaves: In some communities, you can recycle defective Microwaves as scrap metal. (Electronics recyclers do the same for a small fee.) You can also take it to a bulk materials or equipment recycling day organized by local authorities.


If you want to throw away your old pots, pans and other cookware, you should donate them to thrift stores like Goodwill and Salvation Armyor even on websites like Craigslist to find a second home for them. However, this is now unusable for kitchen utensils Recycling is an option;; actually, You may be able to recycle your metal pots and pans with curb recycling if your program accepts “scrap metal”. However, most roadside recycling programs do not accept these items. You should therefore try to find a scrap metal recycler near you to dispose of it properly.

Metal kitchen utensils have the same recycling options as metal cookware. However, if your cutlery is made of plastic, it is important to know what Type of resin They consist of to determine their recyclability. However, wooden spoons and other wooden cutlery can usually be composted with your organic waste.

How to dispose of everything
platformGetty Images

Light bulb

Some states and jurisdictions can actually need Recycling lightbulbsSo check your local laws before throwing them in the trash. Since lightbulbs often break when thrown away, they can release mercury into the environment. To attempt Information on how to safely remove them (as well as other hazards like paint and pesticides) from your area.


Some cities will pick up your mattress when you collect it (sealed in a plastic bag to avoid bedbugs) with your normal trash to collect. If you plan to buy a new mattressMany retailers will also take the old one away for you.

If used gently and in good condition, you can try donating it to a non-profit organization (such as Habitat for Humanity, the Salvation Army, or a local homeless shelter). Simply check to see if the regulations of the Ministry of Health in your area allow it. If not, try the website Bye mattress to find a recycling center near you or to hire a moving service like 1-800-GOT-JUNK? to do the dirty work for you.

How to dispose of everything
Tetra ImagesGetty Images


It is important to discard expired or unused medication as soon as possible to prevent others from accidentally taking it or intentionally abusing it. Use this option to dispose of them safely Search engine of the DEA Diversion Control Division to find a certified waste disposal facility near you (including some pharmacies). Your local law enforcement agency can also organize regular pickup days.

If you don’t find any, you can also throw away some drugs using the FDA-suggested method:

  1. Mix the medication (do not crush it) with an unpleasant substance such as dirt, cat litter or old coffee grounds.
  2. Place the mixture in a sealed plastic bag.
  3. Throw the bag in the trash.
  4. Scratch or darken any personal information on empty pill bottles or packaging before throwing it away.

Note: The FDA recommends flushing some specific medicines into the toilet if a take-back option is not available because of the risk of someone accidentally taking them. These include hydrocodone (e.g. Vicodin) and oxycodone and some others. You can see the full list Specific instructions for disposal can be found here or on the label.

Water filter

Many household water filters can be recycled through recycling programs from the manufacturer or retailer. Brita encourages their filters to be sent to their recycling program TerraCycle – Simply collect your used filters (after drying them for three days) and Brita jugs and bottles in a garbage bag, pack them and give them to a UPS location after completing a shipping form on the Brita website to receive a prepaid shipping label. In this way, you can even collect Brita points that you can redeem for exclusive rewards!

For other brands of water filters, you can contact the manufacturer to find out if they offer or use a recycling program Zero waste box program from TerraCycle This ensures that all your water filters (as well as air filters) are safely recycled for you. However, you need to buy a box to send it to the appropriate program.

Related Posts