How to Recycle Inkjet Printers

By Elton Dunn

Hang onto cords if you can reuse them, but recycle printers.
i Printer cable image by rasita from

While recycling inkjet cartridges is common---and can even fetch you money or discounts on new cartridges---recycling unwanted printers themselves is less common. Still, printers contain recyclable plastic and other parts, so recycling them is environmentally responsible behavior. You'll have a variety of options to consider for printer recycling, as the website Environment, Health and Safety Online notes. Select the option that works best for you. Most are free, though some have a small fee.

Call your town's recycling center, and find out whether it recycles printers and what you need to do. Then leave your old printer at the curb for curbside collection or take it to the recycling center, as you're directed. This is the easiest option, but not every community offers electronics recycling.

Bring the inkjet printer to a store that sells office equipment, such as Office Depot or Best Buy. Best Buy allows customers to recycle electronics, including printers, for free. Office Depot charges a $5 to $15 fee, depending on the size of your machine.

Search for additional recycling opportunities at EcoSquid by entering your ZIP Code. This includes local stores that offer electronics recycling, retail

Drop working printers (along with printer cables and manual, if possible) at local thrift stores that sell equipment, such as The Salvation Army or Goodwill. If your inkjet printer still works, someone else may be able to use it. You can also ask local schools, libraries and elder centers whether they could use the printer and donate directly to a needy group.