Computer recycling isn't always as simple as pulling out hard drives and ripping out magnets, but it isn't as different as many people expected. New types of equipment, changes in materials, and expectations that weren't met have created a shift in how metal scrappers handle their tech finds. Here are a few details about personal computer (PC) recycling for newer systems.
No, Hard Drives Aren't Dead
One expectation in the mid-2000's was that solid state drives (SSDs) would take over the market and get rid of a significant niche within computer recycling; rare earth magnets.
Many hobbyists search for rare earth magnets for their own projects. Magnet recycling is possible, but there hasn't been a major breakthrough in making magnet recycling sustainable. As it is, it costs more fuel and machinery to recycle magnets than most facilities would get back in magnet material, even given a steady supply.
With magnet recycling relegated to personal trades and a few medium-sized businesses who could pay decent rates, a complete removal of rare earth magnets would change scrapping habits for some people...but it didn't happen. The first generation of consumer-grade SSDs were faster than hard drives and had no moving parts, but they still failed faster than the older hard drive technology.
Modern SSDs last just as long as hard drives if not longer, so it's only a matter of time--and that timeline is fairly easy to gauge. Right now, most people will get their computers from whatever most major companies include. Laptops still come with SSDs simply because they're better for portable devices that may be dropped fairly often, but hard drives are still included in desktops.
Custom desktops still use hard drives as well. Many gamers and artists will use a main and possibly secondary SSD for the games and programs that need to run quickly, but in a world where a 2TB (terabye) hard drive averages under $200 and can be found for under $100, that's a lot of bulk space for a low price that doesn't need to be lightning fast.
Put simply, people don't need to spend a lot of money when their cat pictures will load fast enough for cheap.
Video Cards Are Expensive. Slow Down!
Don't toss the entire computer into the recycling bin! If your system has a video card, it could be reused in another system and worth more than its value in scrap.
Video cards (also known as graphics cards) are a type of expansion card that delivers heavy lifting and special instructions for graphical content. For graphic designers, they allow complex details to be made and loaded (rendered) faster. For gamers, there are some specific techniques that can't work without a video card no matter how many other standard parts you stack inside the system.
These cards are self-contained computers of sorts that are dedicated to video performance, and can be added to other systems fairly easily. If they're still working, they can be sold for use on another system for more than their scrap value unless the cards are about a decade obsolete. This is subject to change, and is more based on how certain video game companies write their games.
Contact a PC recycling professional to discuss which parts are in demand, and what you may be able to do with the more valuable parts.Share
9 February 2018
Nobody likes a dirty beach or foul-smelling pool water, but unfortunately, pollution can make it hard to enjoy nature. However, this downside of loose trash blowing around doesn't always prompt people to take things like recycling seriously--even though the practice is relatively simple. My blog will teach you how to make recycling a part of your everyday life, so that you don't have to sacrifice your own comforts to protect the world. For example, do you have any idea how many different ways you might be able to reuse those boring plastic shopping sacks? My blog will teach you the skills you need to protect the environment.