Image Credit: Natalia Pankova
Whether you have broken your mobile phone or just want to upgrade to a newer model, there are better things to do with an old phone than stick it in a drawer!
Mobile phones contain many valuable materials and components so even if a phone is completely unusable, 80% of the materials that it is made from can be recycled and used again.
Many of these materials are damaging to the earth. If you put your phone in the bin and it goes to landfill, these chemicals could leach into the ground.
Your mobile phone is full of personal information about you. Phone Numbers and contact details of all your friends. You may very well have lots of photos that you want to keep, as well as music, podcasts and movies that you have downloaded.
Then, there are the passwords; Facebook, Twitter, the logins for your email, bank or favourite shopping sites. All things that you really do not want anyone else getting hold of.
Firstly download all that personal stuff that you want to keep like photos and music to your computer or make sure it is copied to your SIM. Then make sure you remove your SIM and any SD cards in your phone.
When you are sure everything is saved do a factory reset on your phone. This deletes all apps and wipes all that personal info. Here is a very good article on How to wipe an Android phone or tablet on the Which? website. If you have an Apple phone, the details on how to do a factory reset on an iPhone are on their website.
You've probably seen them advertising on TV, the Internet and in magazine. There are lots of companies which will help you to recycle your mobile phone for cash. Some allow you to donate the money to your favourite charity too.
Many of these recycling companies will often give you a small amount of money for even a non-working phone. You can find out if your phone may be worth money using this Mobile Phone Recycling Price Comparison Search.
If you don't want to sell your old phone, how else can you dispose of it in an environmentally friendly way?
Most charity shops accept mobile phones for recycling in all conditions. They can collect them for refurbishment or recycling. So, your donated phone can help raise money for the chairty.
Many schools and community groups also collect phones to raise money too.
Any mobile phone can also be disposed of via you local council's 'small electricals' recycling, either through your kerbside collection or at your local recycling centre.
About the Author: Jacqui O'Brien is the Editor of Reduce Reuse Recycle.