Every year an estimated 155,000 tonnes of electrical items are thrown away in the UK, instead of reusing or recycling them. These are products that either have a plug or need batteries to work.
These products contain valuable resources, such as copper, aluminium, gold, and steel, which could be rescued and reused.
If batteries or vapes are discarded in general rubbish, they can also be a fire risk.
If your electrical items are still working but you no longer want them, then it's easy to find a great cause to pass on your electrical items.
Before passing on any smart devices, such as phones, tablets, laptops or computers, make sure you remove memory cards and SIM cards. You should also permanently delete all personal and private data. Find out how to permanently delete your data with these step-by-step guides.
From time to time, electrical items will stop working. Wherever possible, it’s best to try and fix items before getting rid of them. This may mean contacting a professional, but it may be cheaper to pay to have something fixed than to buy a replacement.
You could even try learning the skills yourself and you can often find repair videos online, or there could be a repair café near you.
Most electrical retailers and supermarkets provide drop-off points to recycle your old batteries.
Many libraries in Essex have a small battery recycling box, which accepts household batteries (such as AA, AAA, 6V and D batteries) and batteries from mobile phones and laptops. Speak to library staff for more details.
Larger batteries such as those from cars can be recycled at an Essex County Council recycling centre, as long as it is from your own home or car.
Vapes contain batteries so should not be placed in general rubbish as they are a fire hazard.
Retailers may provide a take-back service for vapes.
Alternatively, you can recycle them in the dedicated bins at any Essex County Council recycling centre.
If your old electricals contain batteries or a bulb, please remove these and recycle them separately.
Before recycling any smart devices, such as phones, tablets, laptops or computers, make sure you remove memory cards and SIM cards. You should also permanently delete all personal and private data. Find out how to permanently delete your data with these step-by-step guides.
Many electrical retailers provide drop-off points to recycle your old electricals. You can also recycle them at any Essex County Council recycling centre.
The following Essex County Council libraries have a wheeled container where you can recycle any broken electrical items. Please place items, including cables, into the container loose wherever possible.