Our old and broken electronics and household appliances do not have to gather dust in a closet or get tossed in a landfill – which can pollute groundwater and is illegal. Recycling, repurposing and donation offer a safer and more environmentally conscious method of taking care of our electronic waste, commonly known as “e-waste.”
E-waste includes, but is not limited to, TVs, computers, tablets, mobile phones, printers, radios, toasters and stereo systems. Improper disposal is subject to a $100 fine.
However, because it is now illegal to simply throw out e-waste in the trash, electronics manufacturers are also responsible for providing free recycling of electronic waste to consumers. Many electronic retailers also offer buy-back or trade-in options at their stores.
If you have unwanted e-waste, before you donate or recycle, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency advises consumers to:
- Consider upgrading the hardware or software before buying a new product.
- Delete all personal information from your electronics.
- Remove any batteries from the electronics, which may need to be recycled separately.
Here’s how to properly dispose of your e-waste.
If your electronics are still in usable conditions, consider donating them! Bushwick Ayuda Mutua (BAM) often accepts air conditioning units and kitchen electronics, including microwaves and food processors. If you want to inquire about donating other electronics, fill out this form.
You can also donate your used but not broken electronics or appliances to the Salvation Army or Goodwill. What may be considered a “waste” in your home could be useful to someone else in our community.
The closest Goodwill Store & Donation Center to Bushwick is located at 258 Livingston St. in Boerum Hill. The store is open every day of the week from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m., and its phone number is 718-923-9037.
The Salvation Army Family Store & Donation Center is located at 436 Atlantic Ave., also in Boerum Hill. The store is open Monday through Saturday from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m., and its phone number is 718-923-9037.
Note: If you’re a local organization accepting electronics donations, comment your name and contact information below!
Scholes Street Recycling
Scholes Street Recycling is a nearby New York State licensed e-waste collection facility. The facility recycles computers, monitors, printers, scanners and other electronics.
Drop off your e-waste at Scholes Street Recycling, or arrange a pickup from your office or apartment building. After collecting your e-waste, Scholes Street Recycling destroys the data according to EPA and industry standards.
Scholes Street Recycling is located at 492 Scholes St. The facility is open Monday through Friday from noon to 4:30 p.m. and has limited hours on Saturday. Reach Scholes Street Recycling at (718) 386-5750.
Brooklyn Special Waste Drop-Off Site
The New York City Department of Sanitation has multiple Special Waste Drop-Off sites around the city where residents can drop off certain harmful items for safe and secure disposal. These sites accept batteries, fluorescent light bulbs, electronics and more.
Reference the special waste drop-off check-list to figure out the best way to dispose of your e-waste or other harmful products.
The Brooklyn site is located at 459 North Henry St. in Greenpoint. It is open from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. every Saturday and the last Friday of every month.
Bring your old device to any Apple store for trade-in or recycling. After evaluating the device, Apple may apply the value of the item to a new purchase or put it on a gift card. Apple trade-in also accepts third party (non-Apple) devices. If a device does not qualify for trade-in, Apple will recycle it for free.
Call Apple Support or the store ahead of time to make sure they accept your old tech.
The Apple store closest to Bushwick is located at 247 Bedford Ave. in Williamsburg. The store is open from 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. Monday through Friday, 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. on Saturday and 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. on Sunday. The store’s phone number is (929) 397-2740.
Your outdated and even broken electronics can be recycled at no cost at Staples. There is a limit of seven items per customer per day.
Check Staples’ list of accepted items for recycling before making the trip. Staples accepts most e-waste, except for televisions, smoke detectors, large speakers, kitchen electronics, appliances and alkaline batteries.
The Staples store closest to Bushwick is located at 535 Morgan Ave. The store is open from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. Monday through Friday, 9 a.m. to 8 p.m. on Saturday and 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. on Sunday. The store’s phone number is (718) 388-3447.
At Best Buy, you can bring in up to three items per household per day to recycle. Laptops, radios, vacuums, fans, curling irons, alarm clocks, turntables and more are accepted for recycling. Reference the list of accepted and unaccepted items to see if your e-waste qualifies.
Best Buy also has a haul-away option for larger electronics and appliances, such as fitness equipment and dishwashers.
The Best Buy in Brooklyn is located at 625 Atlantic Ave. at the Atlantic Terminal Mall on the second floor. The store is open every day from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m., and its phone number is (718) 230-7480.
Trade-in or recycle your used phone or tablet at participating AT&T stores. You do not need to have service with AT&T to drop off your electronics. Before heading to the store, call ahead of time to make sure they will accept your device for trade-in or recycling.
Participating AT&T stores:
- 56-43 Myrtle Ave., Queens, NY 11385, Phone: (718) 386-2500
- 21 Graham Ave., Brooklyn, NY 11206, Phone: (718) 302-6514
- 491 Myrtle Ave., Brooklyn, NY 11205, Phone: (718) 210-0211
If you are still unsure what to do with your e-waste, contact the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation E-waste Recycling team by phone, 518-402-8706, or email, [email protected].
Residents can also schedule an e-waste pick-up with the New York City Department of Sanitation, through a pick-up request form.
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