How to Dispose of Broken Copy Machines

by Larry Parr

Broken copy machines can pose a real problem for individuals and companies faced with the prospect of disposing of these units. Copy machines take hundreds of years to decompose in our landfills and, as they decompose, can leach toxic chemicals into the soil and eventually into our drinking water. There are a couple of alternatives to simply tossing your broken copy machine into the nearest garbage can. It might even be possible to obtain a tax break if you dispose of your machine in the right way and help a worthwhile cause at the same time.

1

Contact local schools and nonprofit organizations and make arrangements to donate your broken copiers if possible. Not only will such donations keep your copies out of a landfill, your copier may also help students learn about such electronic devices and get practical experience servicing them. Keep receipts of your donations for possible tax savings later.

2

Contact the copier's manufacturer to see if the company has a take-back program. Many manufacturers will take back an old, broken machine and recycle parts and other components to save money while also reducing the amount of material making its way into our landfills.

3

Contact an electronic waste recycling center. These are special centers that recycle copiers and other types of electronic waste. Make certain that the e-waste center you are dealing with has signed the Electronic Recycler's Pledge of True Stewardship, which guarantees it is a genuine electronic recycler. You can locate e-waste recycling centers in your state doing some online research.

4

Phone your local sanitation department if you are unable to donate your machine or if appropriate recycling centers are not available in your area. Your local sanitation department might know of places where your old copier can be donated or recycled, or they might accept electronic waste at special times or places.

Tip

  • check Simply throwing your broken copy machine into the trash is illegal in many communities; check with your local sanitation department for other options.

About the Author

Larry Parr has been a full-time professional freelance writer for more than 30 years. For 25 years he wrote cartoons for television, everything from "Smurfs" to "Spider-Man." Today Parr train dogs and write articles on a variety of topics for websites worldwide.

Photo Credits

  • photo_camera George Doyle & Ciaran Griffin/Stockbyte/Getty Images