5 Essential Steps Before You Recycle a Computer

Technology is upgraded and improved in performance rapidly. Within six months there is a new PC system in the market with functionalities that can reduce the time you spend on the computer. This persuades you to purchase a newer model, which means your old computer will be put in storage and will remain ideal unless you do something about it. Old PCs or laptops take up space in facilities.

Many households and businesses are not aware of electronic disposal options. The act of electronic recycling can contribute to good environmental practices. It can prevent toxic waste from landfills and many of the old components can be reused in the fabrication of new computers.

1. Recycling computers

Before you send your computer for recycling, there are some essential steps to take to ensure the data on your computer is secured, copied and permanently removed from the system. Deleting the data and emptying the recycling bin is not enough. You want to prevent anyone from accessing data in the future. Most of us think that by simply using the delete key, all the data will be erased, but it is not that easy for data to be completely erased as computers and laptops can retrieve saved data or files.

2. Hard-drive and desktop back-up

Before you recycle your personal PC, ensure to complete a thorough back-up of your data and files. An external hard-drive is a good way to store all the files and data due to the size of the files. Before formatting or permanently deleting the files on your computer hard-drive, check your external hard-drive to ensure you have all your personal files saved. Once you delete all the files, make sure that the files cannot be retrieved as while files may seem invisible, they can still be recovered using specialized software.

Generally, on PCs or laptops people have bank passwords, credit card details and all personal information stored somewhere on the system or through online interactions. This information should be removed to avoid any future breach or infiltration. Erase recent list items and check if you can access recent folders or documents. Ensure all memory storage areas have been erased. You can perform a factory reset which will wipe out all the data and personal files on your PC.

3. Uninstall licensed software

Additionally, you want to uninstall programs on your computer. Programs such as Microsoft office, Adobe and so forth are licensed software that you will need to install in your new system. By uninstalling these programs, you de-authorize the assigned computer therefore preventing limitations to installing or accessing your software from various existing PC or laptop systems in possession.

4. Delete browsing history

As mentioned above, online interactions can store passwords, software license numbers, credit card details and more. There is a secure way to ensure that your browser history is completely deleted. The option is available on the browser menu. Always recheck before confirming that all the information, sites and personal details cannot be accessed.

5. Contact your local recycling association

Many regions are creating awareness of recycling electronics in their communities. They want to eliminate electronic waste and the negative impacts to the environment. Through recycling electronic equipment, these associations can maximize the lifecycle of the system and can provide refurbished PC or laptops to organizations in need such as non-profit organizations, schools or charity foundations.

Recycling associations have drop-off locations that makes it easy to transport and dispose old computers. Computers are not the only electronics that can be disposed. In fact, these associations accept all types of electronic devices such as TVs, mobile phones, home audio and video systems, printers including vehicle audio systems.