5 Ways to Recycle Your Old Phones

If your current cell phone is unusable and its better days are far in the past or you simply want a new cell phone, you can get some value from it when you discard it.

Recycling your old phone minimizes electronic waste, offers it a chance at a new life, supports a good cause, and can even net you a little money.  Discarded cell phones account for billions of dollars of unused consumer products.


The following are five ways to benefit when parting with your old phone.

Donate Your Phone to Soldiers

Non-profit organizations provide active duty military personnel and veterans with free calling time to contact home from their active duty stations thanks to donations of about 3,000 calling cards each week.  Old cell phones are traded in for other communication devices and calling cards.  Gently used and newer cell phones are accepted as well.


Sell Your Phone Online

Websites like Glyde offer an online store for you to buy and sell your old phone, along with other old tech.  Glyde also compares the amounts you can get on its site with sales offers from Gazelle, Amazon, and Apple.


Sell Your Old Phone Back

Some manufacturers will let you trade in your old phone for a gift card or manufacturer credit that you can apply towards the purchase of a new model.   Apple in particular has a Reuse and Recycling program for this purpose.  Amounts differ depending on your old phone’s make and model.


Have Your Phone Refurbished

If your old phone is in good condition, you can send it to CTIA (aka The Wireless Association).  CTIA will clean, test, and update your phone, then provide it to retailers who will resell it.  If your phone doesn’t need refurbishing, CTIA will clean it and offer it for resale.  Phones that can’t be reused or refurbished will be recycled for their reusable components.


Get Paid to Recycle

If you want a program that will protect the environment from the poisons of technological waste, Eco-Cell fits the bill.  Eco-Cell pays people to recycle cell phones and other technological devices.  The organization will pay you with a check for your old phone and refurbish and resell the phone if possible.  Otherwise, your old phone will be recycled for all its usable components and materials and be kept out of landfills.