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The Best Ways to Dispose of Your Electrical Items

The Best Ways to Dispose of Your Electrical Items

Did you know that every year, an estimated two million tonnes of electronic devices are discarded in the UK? It is important that we dispose of these devices correctly to ensure we are not damaging the environment. In fact, the UK is one of the worst offenders when it comes to e-waste. According to the Environmental Audit Committee, people in the UK generated the second most e-waste per capita in the world in 2019!

Thankfully, there are a range of ways we can effectively discard our e-waste in order to improve this, from donation, to reselling or even taking it to a drop off or recycling centre to dispose of it responsibly.


What is WEEE?

Electronics that cannot be reused, typically if they are broken, are classed as WEEE items (waste electrical and electronic equipment.) WEEE covers a large range of products, from kettles to toasters, or even hoovers. Simply put, if it has a plug or requires a battery, it is likely a WEEE product – the composition of WEEE waste varies, so it’s important to know exactly what you can and cannot recycle.

Any electrical item that has a crossed-out wheelie bin symbol can be recycled. So, look out for this symbol when you’re deciding what to do with your WEEE products. Sometimes you may not even need to recycle your product – if it’s still in working condition, why not donate it instead?



Do not send your electronic devices to landfill, as some of these products may leak hazardous chemicals, contributing to both water and air pollution. Items such as batteries and old chargers can be recycled, either at local recycling points or some supermarkets – which take batteries!


How Do I Recycle My Electrical Items?

It’s easy! Now that you know WHAT items can be recycled, WHERE you can is straightforward.

Council Collections

Some council authorities offer a kerbside collection for unwanted electrical items. The council will come and collect items such as toasters or kettles, even household batteries. Simply place these items in a small carrier bag and place it next to your recycling bins on collection day. Be sure however, to check with your local authority first, as not all councils offer this service!

Recycling Centres

If you do not have kerbside collections within your local authority, don’t worry, there are many other ways to responsibly dispose of your electrical items. Most people in fact, typically use recycling centres – there are thousands of them across the UK so you’re likely to have one near you. Just be aware of some measures in place at some centres to avoid overcrowding, be it booking slots, or only allowing visitors with odd or even number plates on particular days of the week.