How to Properly Recycle Your Smartphone

Old devices should always be recycled to help reduce e-waste.

Quick Answer: Between community initiatives and national campaigns, there are many ways you can recycle a cell phone.

Did you know that less than 20 percent of unwanted cell phones are recycled over the course of one year? That means for every device recycled, four are either stashed away in a junk drawer or thrown out in the trash. At Net10 Wireless, we encourage everyone to find a place that accepts out-of-use cell phones so they can be refurbished, upcycled, or recycled.

Phone with broken screen

How it works

Let’s say you’ve just purchased a new smartphone from Net10 Wireless. Now that your old phone is no longer in use, you probably don’t want it lying around your home. That’s where cell phone recycling comes into play.

When you bring in your phone or send it to a recycling center, it can take many different routes. Sometimes, old phones are refurbished and either resold or donated. Other times, their components are repurposed and reused in other products.

Why recycle

Cell phones often contain materials – such as lead, mercury, arsenic, beryllium, cadmium, and polyvinyl chloride – that, when not disposed of properly, can harm the environment. Do your part to reduce e-waste, and recycle your old cell phone.

Not only does recycling keep these harmful materials out of landfills, it also allows manufacturers to mine existing devices for reusable materials, like palladium, tin, copper, and zinc. This helps conserve natural resources – including energy – and reduces greenhouse gases, as well as air and water pollution, which are byproducts of the manufacturing process.

Where to recycle

In addition to community initiatives, there are plenty of ways to recycle an old phone. For example, select retailers offer in-store recycling programs that include mobile phone recycling. EcoATM automated kiosks are available throughout the country and will give you instant cash for your used devices.

If you’d like your old cell phone to go to a good cause, do some research to find an organization that will donate your device to someone in need. For example, Cell Phones for Soldiers provides no-cost communication services to active-duty military members and veterans. The National Coalition Against Domestic Violence also accepts used cell phones to help fund programs and support legislation to end domestic violence.

Keeping your device

Instead of buying a new device, keeping your existing one is another great way to help protect the environment. At Net10 Wireless, we allow you to bring your own phone and pair it with a low-cost, no-contract service plan. Make the switch today to see the Net10 difference for yourself.