Recycling Points For Computer Systems

Posted on: 28 September 2015

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When getting rid of computers, you need to be aware of a few useful materials that can be recovered from components and peripherals. Some parts can be sent to the recycling system whole, while others may be better with a few materials taken apart. As you look through the computer, think about a few areas that could give a bit of cash back or at least help the recycling system.

Hard Drive Recycled Materials

The hard drive is used to store your important information, and can often be taken to a new computer to continue as storage. Unfortunately, wear and tear can lead to a useless hard drive that needs to be scrapped.

Hard drives are often enclosed in an aluminum or steel casing. External hard drives that connect conveniently to USB (Universal Serial Bus) ports may be covered in plastic, but the inside is the same internal hard drive as with any standard computer.

Upon picking up the hard drive, you may notice quite a bit of weight. Unfortunately, not all of this weight is expensive, recyclable materials. The data platters lend most of the weight from the hard drive, and are made of a dense, glass-like silicon material. There is, however, a thin layer of platinum on many hard drives. If you're scraping platinum for a pile, it may be worth your time. Otherwise, leave the platters for bulk recycling.

Another recycling point is the the rare earth magnet cluster, which is used instead of screws for some components. These magnets are not only recyclable, but sought after by hobbyists looking for small, commercially-cut magnets for their projects.

Computer Case Recycling And Safety

Computer cases are large collections of aluminum or steel, but the amount of metal can be deceptive. 

First, know that you may have to remove the plastic on the outside of the computer case. A lot of the bulk could come from superfluous design for marketing purposes, and it'll be better for the recycling professionals to pull off any excess plastic. It's also better for you, since you'll be able to fit the case in a pile or stack easier.

The computer case is not just a lid that slides off, or the side panel. There's a lot of framework inside the computer that can be used as well, although it may be better to keep any shelves in place. Be careful, as many computer cases are industrially cut and still have an edge. Smooth edge or rolled edge computers are becoming more common, but you're better safe than sorry.

Contact a recycling professional for garbage collection and direct delivery of your recyclable materials to a recycling center like City Waste Services Of New York, Inc. that can put the materials to better use.