How To Get Rid Of Your Old Or Unwanted Equipment
As technology changes at the fast pace we are used to, you probably have all sorts of bits of technology lying around and, as we can’t or probably don’t want to simply bin it, how can you get rid of this old stuff? Leaving it to pile up wastes space, devalues it further over time, and is often a waste of perfectly good resources. Here are some ideas of what to do with your old equipment.
Family and Friends
First off, try and offer it to family and friends – especially if it is in reasonable condition – this may not only provide a further life opportunity for your old item but may offer a sense of satisfaction in providing someone special with a useful gadget or gizmo. However, you might want to remind them that it doesn’t come with the lifetime warranty that giving things to friends and family often means.
There are a bunch of online auction sites where you can offload your old equipment. You have to be prepared to put in a bit of work with auction sites by preparing your item for display, writing a good profile to sell it, waiting on bidding, then dealing with postage and packaging (any possible returned items) however this can be a great way to reach a lot of interested people.
Equipment recycling centres are appearing all over the place, look for businesses dealing in WEEE (Waste Electrical and Electronic Equipment) – these companies may be willing to take the products off your hands for a small fee, and some may even offer to take it free.
Freecycle sites match people who have things with people who want things. A good place to start in the UK is Freecycle UK.
Car Boot Sale
Just hope the rain holds off long enough to let your move your equipment. Car Boot Sales offer a low cost way of getting rid of your old stuff and can offer a day of fun and an opportunity to get outdoors. Remember though that a Car Boot sale isn’t guaranteed to sell your item so you may have to pay the boot costs and still end up taking the item home with you.
Keep It Long Term
Instead of devaluing – your item may actually increase in value if you can bear to hold onto it long enough (especially if you have the original packaging and all the documentation). There is often a great call for retro items so that item you think is junk today might be the Antiques Roadshow find of the future.
Offer It To Charity
A number of charitable organisations need donations of second hand equipment, and some, such as Computer Aid, specifically focus in providing refurbished computing equipment to those who can really benefit from it.
Use The Newspaper Classifieds
Another alternative to newspaper classifieds are in-store advertising boards. This can help you offload equipment but again isn’t guaranteed and you will still have to foot the costs of advertising.
Your equipment may yet have some life in it. Perhaps a firmware upgrade, or just a reinstall, may offer some longevity to your device. If something small has broken check out the online auction sites for easily replaceable parts. You may even save some money this way.
Trade It In
If buying new equipment, ask the supplier to take your old equipment in part exchange. The smaller local dealers may be more open to this than the large retailers so it is worth shopping around.
Contact The Manufacturer
A number of manufacturers are starting to offer end of life services where they will take their own equipment back from you, as part of their Green IT initiatives, HP are one of these companies – so it’ might be worth checking out their website or contacting customer services.
Turn It Into Art
Ok, so this doesn’t exactly get rid of it but there are some mighty fine art pieces that have been created from old bits of junk. Don’t believe it? Check out this article from The Times: ‘Junk artist’ Gabriel Dishaw re-creates favourite shoes from computer parts