Unused Electronics: Trash or Treasure?

Queue the Queen music, “(dunt, dunt, dunt) Another one bites the dust and another ones gone and another one gone, another one bites the dust”. We all have that old laptop or desktop computer, or even iPhone 4 laying around and don’t know what to do with it. If you are a computer guy, you may reinstall windows on that laptop and use it as a kid’s laptop, or remove the battery, and use it as a play phone. But what about those that don’t know how to “reinstall windows” or have more “play phones” than they have t-shirts? In this short White Paper, we will give you a few options on what to do with those “paper weights”.

** SIDE NOTE: If you have going to use any of the suggestions below, be sure that you wipe all of the data off of the old device. If you do not know how to do this, you can contact us using the information at the bottom and we can assist you.

Option 1: DONATION

There are a few options for being able to donate your old devices. You can take them to your local Goodwill, or even an instructor at a local college or high school and they can use them for “hands on” practice in class. Or perhaps, there is a foster home that has more foster children than computers, but with COVID-19, they all need to have their own computers for Zoom meetings. Along those lines, contact your local Veteran’s Home or Assisted Living center. A lot of these places are still not allowing visitors, so their residents could definitely use and old phone or laptop to be able to see their loved ones. (Shhh…. A little secret, you can use FaceTime on an iPhone when it is connected to wireless internet, without having a data plan through the cell phone service provider)


Old computers and cell phones are under a category called E-Waste. Unfortunately, due to all the electrical components and batteries in a computer, one can not simply “toss it” in the trash. Now… you could go all “Office Space” on the computer and “crack it open” with a baseball bat or crowbar, remove all of the batteries inside, and then toss it in the trash. Or you could just recycle it. Many towns nowadays have Electronic Recycling Centers. If you are not sure if your community has a recycling center, just open Google and in the search bar type in “recycling centers near me”. If there is not a recycling center in the immediate area, there are other places that will recycle them for you, including Best Buy or Office Depot. Also, many manufacturers will accept recyclables such as Dell and HP.


CHA-CHING! That’s the sound of a few extra dollars going into your bank account, or wallet, or piggy bank. There are many organizations online that can buy back a computer if they can see a future use for its components. This includes smaller companies as well as big manufacturers like Apple. This option may be best if your computer is non-functional because of a single break or recent problem. The newer computer model, the more moo-la you will get.

If you have any questions about the information above, which includes how to format (erase) your hard drive before you donate or sell, please do not hesitate to give a call! The information is listed below.

eRemoteHelp email: info@eremotehelp.com Phone: 888-699-3949