How to Sell Your Old Phone and Help the Environment

How to Sell Your Old Phone and Help the Environment

When we buy the latest smartphones, we do not tend to think about how much material is in our old phones and how valuable they could be if they are put back into the production and supply chain through recycling. We all know that we should recycle, but many of us just leave our old devices lying around gathering dust, when they could be doing some good. In 2020, The Environmental Audit Committee launched an inquiry into Electronic Waste and the Circular Economy and they discovered that the UK produces the second greatest amount of e-waste in the world! e-waste is a huge problem and it is only going to get worse unless we do something about it. In this blog post, we will explore the Circular Economy and find out why selling your old phone is one of the best things you can do for the environment.

What is The Circular Economy? The circular economy is a model of production and consumption where people share, lease, reuse, repair, refurbish and recycle existing materials and products for as long as possible. This way, products last longer and create less waste. This means that instead of throwing away your old phone, you can sell it on or recycle it so that it does not end up in landfill.

Every year, £47 billion worth of computers, smartphones, tablets and other electronic waste is thrown away. Their high value is attributed to the precious metals they contain, such as gold, silver, copper and platinum. Some of these rare and precious resources are predicted to run out completely by the end of the century, so why are we sending them to landfill when specialists can extract these metals and recycle them to create new products? e-waste is extremely harmful to the environment as electronics contain toxic materials which can leak into the ground and cause pollution. According to Material Focus, a not-for-profit organization that promotes recycling of old electronics, if everyone in the UK recycled their old electronics, it would save 2.8 million tonnes of carbon dioxide emissions each year which is equivalent to taking 1.3 million cars off the road.

So, what can you do to help reduce e-waste? 

  • Postpone upgrades for as long as you can. Think twice about whether you need the newest phone or device to do your job or communicate effectively.
  • Think about giving old items to someone else if they are still in good condition or just need a small repair. If friends and family do not want them, there are charities that can use them.
  • Sell your old phone. One of the best things you can do to reduce e-waste is to sell your old phone. By selling your old phone, you are giving it a new lease of life and keeping it out of landfill. 

What happens when you sell your old phone?

If your mobile phone is a recent model and still in good condition, it will most likely be resold. There are many people who do not need the latest phone model, so they can benefit from buying an older model and saving money. If you sell your phone and it has minor damage, such as a cracked screen or a damaged microphone jack, the reseller might fix it and sell it as a refurbished phone. Sometimes, this means making a small repair, other times, it might mean a total overhaul. Either way, phone resellers can get your old phone back into good working order.

If you do not want to sell your phone, why not consider donating it?

With so many people suffering from financial difficulties, it is important to think about donating or recycling old technology which is still useable.

The British Heart Foundation offers a free Covid-secure collection service for used electronics 

WeeeCharity is a UK charity that helps to relieve poverty by recycling electrical equipment, no matter what condition it is in. These electronics are recycled, donated, or resold back to the community 

Before you sell or donate your old phone, make sure you delete your personal and confidential data. This will help protect your privacy. Even if you delete your information from a device and empty the recycle bin or deleted items folder, it might still be possible to recover it. This is because the data does not just disappear when you delete it. If you want to make sure that your data is really gone, follow the instructions on your manufacturer’s website.

There so much more to be done to raise awareness about the environmental impact of e-waste. We all need to start thinking about the entire life cycle of our electronics, from the way they are manufactured to the way we dispose of them. By selling your old phone, you are helping to close the loop and create a more sustainable future for everyone. 

For more information about how to sell your old smartphone, contact Comms Connect on 020 8457 2470. We will be happy to answer any questions you have about the process. Together, we can make a difference.


The Environmental Audit Committee 

Material Focus 

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