(Photo Credit: Flickr, Damian Gadal)

E-Waste Be Gone!

If you’ve ever tried to rid yourself of an old television or computer, you already know a thing or two about e-waste. For starters, you know that it’s not just some trendy name made up for electronic stuff you no longer need and that it’s also not something you can just toss and render it gone. Not legally, at least.

What Qualifies as E-Waste?

E-waste is a word used to describe unwanted electronic items. Doesn’t matter whether an item can be recycled or not– or whether it is even in working condition or not– the word still applies. In America, one reason why e-waste is not as easy to get rid of as other items is that it is illegal to just dump it in your regular trash bin. This is because the potentially hazardous materials used to make electronic items may be toxic to the environment or to people or animals who come in contact with them.

For example, cathode ray tubes– the actual glass used in your computer monitors and televisions– contains hazardous amounts of lead. Placing them in a regular trash bin is prohibited in the United States, so they must be disposed of or recycled under strictly regulated conditions. Unfortunately, standards for recycling e-waste are not the same all over the world, which presents a major health risk for people– especially those in developing countries– where other harmful substances like mercury and chloroflourocarbon gas often contaminate soil, air and water supplies due to the improper recycling of electronic devices.

When You Just Want it Gone Already

So if you have old electronic items and you just want them gone already, what are you to do? Well, you can contact your local waste removal authority and learn about options available in your city or town. In most cases, a special pickup can be arranged or you may be able to visit a nearby ecycling center where you can deposit your old junk. Be advised, however, that this option may seem simple and easy, but it can also cause you to miss out on some serious cash if you’re not careful.

Of course, you may also want to give your items away or sell them online using a classified ad site. What many who’ve taken this route find, however, is that fielding phone calls and emails and scheduling pickup times with random strangers is not the most desirable way to get rid of an item. There’s also the very real possibility that arranging to meet a stranger for the exchange can result in serious physical harm. If you’ve read the headlines, then you already know about the criminals and sociopaths who deliberately stalk online classified ad sites with the intention of finding a new victim.

The Best E-Waste Solution

The very best solution is one where you don’t have to call around town searching for answers; where you don’t have to entertain strangers by phone or email..or worse, meet them in public while taking your life into your own hands. Our favorite solution for getting rid of e-waste is simple, easy and might just result in a little spending money in the end. Of course, we’re referring to the Gone! app and while we may be a little biased, there’s no denying that taking a photo and initiating a few taps on your phone or tablet is a lot less time consuming and dangerous than any of the other methods described.

Where Has Your E-Waste Gone?

Have you had an occasion to get rid of e-waste before? Which method did you choose? How do you plan to handle your electronic waste in the future? Let us know your thoughts and experiences in the comment section below.

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