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What is Electronic Waste and How do you Recycle it?

 In today’s digital age, the rate at which we upgrade our electronic devices is ever-accelerating. The responsible disposal of such items is often overlooked, leading to a growing collection of electronic waste in our homes. The good news is that much of this waste contains valuable components that can be recycled. In Ireland, anything with a plug, battery or cable can be recycled for free!

In this blog, we will explore what electronic waste is, why you should recycle electronic waste, and provide practical tips to do so.


What is Electronic Waste?

Electronic waste (or e-waste) encompasses discarded electronic devices that are no longer in use or have reached the end of their operational life. These devices can include a wide range of items such as computers, mobile phones, televisions, printers, remote controls, and even home appliances such as washing machines and fridges.

These electronic devices can contain various materials, including valuable metals (such as copper, gold, silver), plastics, glass, and hazardous substances (such as lead, mercury, cadmium), which require proper handling and disposal to prevent environmental contamination and health risks.


Why Recycle Electronic Waste?

Recycling electronics allows valuable materials like gold, silver, and copper to be recovered and reused in manufacturing. This reduces the need for extracting and processing resources, conserving energy, and reducing environmental impact by enabling a circular economy where resources are reused and recycled rather than discarded. Additionally, recycling prevents hazardous substances within electronic items from polluting the environment through improper disposal.


3 Ways to Recycle Electronic Waste

When it comes to recycling electronic waste there are various options:

  1. Donate or Sell Functioning Devices: One way to extend the lifespan of your old items is to donate or sell them to others who can use them.
  2. Free Drop Off Points: In Ireland electronic goods can be recycled for free at local Civic Amenity Sites or at participating retail drop off points. Click here to find your nearest drop off point.
  3. Skip Hire: If you are planning a home clear-out, a skip is a quick, convenient, and safe means of disposing of your household waste, including electronics. At Walsh Waste, we segregate all waste that we receive in our skips to ensure recycling rates are maximised. Click here to learn more about Skip Hire with Walsh Waste.


In conclusion, recycling electronic waste is crucial for conserving resources, reducing pollution, and promoting a circular economy. By donating, selling, or disposing of electronic waste responsible, individuals can play a vital role in mitigating the impacts of e-waste on our planet.