Metal Monday: 5 Ways To Scrap or Recycle Cell Phones

cellphonesSo you have old cell phones sitting around the house, or you see them at garage sales or even in the trash…well these are great items for scrapping. Not all scrap yards will take the cell phones, but we suggest doing a couple of smart things to make them worth it.

  1. Always take the batteries out. By taking the battery out you will be able to sell a cleaner product to your E-Scrap buyer and they will like that. Many scrap buyers of cell phones do not recycle or buy the batteries because they are harder to recycle. The cell phone without the battery is essentially like a small laptop with plastic, gold pins, and a circuit breaker inside.
  2. After you take the battery out put that aside and you will be able to sell that as well. Make sure you save up enough of them to get some decent weight. Cell phone batteries are lithium-ion batteries and will usually be worth recycling when you have a few dozen pounds. You also have to make sure you can find a buyer, as they are not as common as you may think.
  3. Some phones are worth trying to resell on eBay or other online media outlets. If they are an older smartphone model, it could be worth $50-250 online for families looking to buy a phone for their child or if someone needs an extra phone for work. If you are going to resell your cell phone, be sure to remove all personal information and perform a factory reset to be safe.
  4. Save them…you never know what cell phones could become a collectors item one day. Weird or unique phones are always worth saving…especially if you found them while scrapping. It’s also a good idea to save the cell phones in case your’s gets crushed at work or breaks (or you could protect it). It’s pays to have a back up phone.
  5. You could also donate them. Some domestic abuse organizations and child protection programs ask for donated cell phones to provide them to those that are in need of the resources and accessibility of communication that phones provide.

Other electronics like tablets and e-readers will become more and more popular over the next few years when scrapping, so make sure to watch out for those as well. Keep asking the members on the iScrap Metal Forum as well as your local scrap yards what items they are taking so you can stay in tune with pricing.

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