How to Recycle Computer Monitors

by Contributor

Most households have at least one: an old, clunky CRT monitor that's no longer useful. With the rise of inexpensive LCD screens, the unused monitor population has exploded.If you want to recycle your old monitor, there are many options. With a little research and minimal effort, you can do your part to reduce the number of old computer monitors in our landfills.

Think of recycling as reusing. Most of the time, when we think of recycling something, we imagine pulling it apart, grinding it up and melting it down into something new. Before you head for the recycling center, why not try to find a new home for your old monitor? Place an ad of Craigslist for a free monitor and you'll be surprised at the response you get for even a small, old CRT monitor.

Contact the computer manufacturer. If you got your monitor as a part of a package with a desktop computer, the manufacturer may have a recycling program. Companies like HP, Dell and Gateway recycle computer components for free or for a small fee. Check on the manufacturer's website or call for the details of its program.

Keep an eye out for community recycling drives. Many towns now set aside a day or a weekend for residents to turn in their old electronic components. Health food stores such as Whole Foods also occasionally collect old computers, monitors and peripherals from the public for recycling. Ask at your town office or local store if they run such a program.

If you have many monitors and junk computer parts, you may consider contacting a computer salvage service. These companies will accept old components and recycle some of the materials. If you have a large amount of junk equipment, you may even make some money. Often, these companies are looking to make a profit from the tiny amount of gold found on the circuit boards of computer hardware.

Warnings

  • close Do not throw your monitor out. Computer components contain many toxic metals that should be kept out of the landfills.
  • close Ask questions. The program or company you are recycling with may be shipping your used equipment overseas where it is stripped and mined for metal through unsafe and environmentally damaging processes.