E-Waste is a huge problem for the environment. Millions of tons of faulty appliances and broken electronics are scrapped every month. Many of these are exported to developing countries, where they are broken down with acid, burned or buried, releasing horrible toxic chemicals into the air and ground. So what are the alternatives?
Repair Don’t Replace
The simplest solution of all is to avoid getting rid of your appliances and electronics whenever you can. Instead, fix them up and maintain them to get the longest lifespan out of them that you can (and really get your money’s worth).
Maintained well you can expect years of good service from the appliances around your home. You might have to replace the odd spare part, but we can help you there with our handy how-to videos and maintenance articles right here on our blog.
Sell Old Electricals & Appliances
If you want a brand new machine, even when your old one is still working well, that’s fair enough. Appliances are designed for our convenience after all, so you’ll most likely want to upgrade from time to time to get a model with modern new features. But that doesn’t mean your old appliance has to come to the end of its working life. Sell it and take the some of the strain of buying a brand new appliance off your wallet. Same goes for electronics like phones and laptops.
Donate Old Electricals & Appliances
If your old appliance isn’t worth much it may not be worth selling, but if it’s still running give it away instead. You can find it a new home with a friend neighbour or colleague, or give it away online. Your appliance’s new owner will thank you for your generosity!
Recycle Don’t Scrap
If your appliance is broken beyond repair, you don’t have to feel guilty when you get rid of it as long as you recycle it correctly. Some recycling schemes simply offer their services in order to turn a profit and ship your old electricals off to non-eco friendly dumps to be broken down. Do your research and make sure you’re recycling with a reputable business.
It’s worth noting too that if you’re buying a new appliance, the company you’re buying from is obligated by law to either accept your old appliance in store or offer a collection service as part of the Waste Electrical or Electronic Equipment (WEEE) Directive. Anything electrical with a crossed out wheelie bin symbol on it can be recycled.
So if your appliance is on its last legs pause before you schedule in a trip to the junkyard and ask yourself a couple of questions. Can it be repaired or would anyone else want to buy it from you or take it off your hands? Repairing, redistributing and recycling your old appliances really does make a difference to our planet.
In the meantime, here are some appliance maintenance tips to keep your trusty machines at their best for as long as possible.