Recycle Electronics and Be Rewarded

Recycle Electronics and Be Rewarded


While there are advantages to living in Iowa, there are many things about big city living that I really miss. When I was in LA we had so many things we could do… Awesome food, activities and events, sports and of course, seldom a lack of sun. But what I think was really cool is that a lot of things happen in big cities first. For example, fashion trends always start in big cities then trickle down to the smaller cities later. It’s just natural for a brand or business to want to start where they can hit the most people all at once. And I don’t fault that, it makes perfect sense. When we were getting ready to move back to Iowa I discovered Craigslist which only had listings in major cities at the time. We had been using eBay since before it was called eBay (it was AuctionWeb in the early days) and we used it to sell a variety of small things. Craigslist was like a digital garage sale for things too big to sell on eBay so we were able to use it to sell or give away some things that we didn’t need to take back to Iowa. One of my favorite things to find on Craigslist was moving boxes.  New moving boxes were extremely expensive and I was just too frugal for that. Especially since we needed like I don’t know a million of them. About that same time, I also discovered a cool new email list called Freecycle. I found a lot of moving boxes on Freecycle’s list and after the move, used the Freecycle list in Iowa to give them another chance at life. This all really stems back to what I said a couple of weeks ago about my attitude regarding recycling and how it had changed.

Since then, these sites have all grown, expanded and even have their own apps accessible while on the go. We have used programs like Freecycle and Craigslist to recycle items we no longer need and purchase items that others are ready to part with. Not only does it save money but it is also good for the environment. Sites like Recyclebank and JouleBug offer recycling tips, information along with incentives. It is not uncommon to see all kinds of household goods listed on various sites. The one recycling effort that continues to elude people is technology. People are unsure how to recycle electronics. In 2009, 141 million mobile devices were discarded but only 12 million were recycled. That number is absolutely staggering. As technology continues to improve by leaps and bounds, as more families are upgrading their phones as well as cutting the cords on their landlines, it is important to get the word out about what do do with the old or outdated devices they have outgrown. U.S Cellular is encouraging their customers to recycle their electronics and is even offering incentives for them to do it.

Have old technology setting around collecting dust? Consider recycling it (and benefiting from it!) -

Proud member of the U.S. Cellular Blogger Brigade! - SahmReviews.comNext month, one lucky SAHM Reviews reader is going to have the opportunity to learn about U.S. Cellular’s Trade-In program. They’ll have to address what to do with their old phone because I’ll be giving away an iPhone 5s! We have a few phones in our family and 3 are iPhones. They are excellent phones with a multitude of apps and features. I’m positive that whomever wins the 5s next month is going to happy!

Figuring out how to recycle the old phone won’t be difficult, either. Users of U.S. Cellular’s 4G LTE network are able to access apps and sites like Recyclebank or 1800Recycle for ideas on ways to be greener. Or like me, use it to map out directions to yard sales or surf Craigslist ads.

How often do you upgrade your electronics and what do you do with your old ones?


About Nicole

Founder and owner of, Nicole has been involved in social media marketing since 2007. She has partnered with a number of major corporations who utilized her skills to improve their social media outreach and online presence. Nicole has worked closely with brands such as Netflix, Nintendo, Domino's and Disney, has been featured in McDonald's videos as well as Maria Bailey's book "Power Moms". Always a SAHM (stay-at-home-mom) and mother of two amazing daughters, if you can't find Nicole, she is probably somewhere being an advocate for playing board games.

43 comments on «Recycle Electronics and Be Rewarded»

  1. a great program. We recycle all our batteries and electronics at our school drives every year.

  2. I feel like when we upgrade our phone.. we hold onto the old phone ‘just in case’ something happens to the new phone… Then when nothing happens… then the old phone gets lost in a drawer never to be found.. It’s bad… #clutter

  3. I upgrade my phone every few years, but when I upgraded from the iPhone 4 to the 5C a few months ago, I gave my old phone to my nine year old to use as an iPod.

  4. Krystal says:

    I need to research how to recycle all my old things! I have a couple items I’d like to recycle. Thanks for sharing this info!

  5. Brandi says:

    We upgrade our phones every couple of years, and then sell our old phones on Craigslist to recoup some of the cost of the upgrade.

  6. Melinda says:

    we’ve been luckly and have been able to sell our old phones. I wouldn’t know what to do with them otherwise

  7. Our old phones go to the kids as toys (we rarely get new phones so there are only a few laying around here). It helps keep them off of ours, which is nice. 🙂

  8. Shell says:

    We upgrade about every two or three years. We usually just trade our old phones in.

  9. Rachael says:

    I bought my phone used a couple of years and will probably use it til it dies. When it does, I’ll recycle it.

  10. Amanda Her says:

    I need to see where I can do that near me. I have a ton of old equipment I need to get rid of!

  11. Louida says:

    I’m with T-Mobile and now they have a program when you want to upgrade your phone all you have to do is trade in your old phone. You can keep trading in your phone as many times as you want.

  12. Such a great program. I have a bag of old batteries in the garage that I have been saving for about 5 years. It is always important to recycle phone, batteries and other electronics. This is a great way to get people to take the extra step to keep it out of the dump!

  13. There are some sites that benefit our military. They accept our used phones, referbish them if necessary, then send them to military members who need them. Many of these sites pay a small price for your phones. Check it out. It’s a good cause.

  14. I had no idea something like this existed! I have like 3 phones lying around the house!

  15. Keikilani says:

    I will have to remember this the next time we go to upgrade our phones. Thank you for sharing.

  16. Liz Mays says:

    It definitely is one of those unknowns I think. Every once in a while I hear of a recycling drive over the weekend, but in the meantime, I really don’t know what to do with my stuff so it just collects. This is good to know!

  17. Jaime says:

    I upgrade my phone about every two years. Sometimes I can go a little longer. I tend to donate my phone to my provider and they repair and give them to women who need them (who may be in abusive situations.)

  18. Debra says:

    Depends what it is, but we update our electronics pretty regularly. We either dispose of them through our town on certain days or our county holds a day 2 times a year to get rid of electronics, paints & other hazardous materials.

  19. We like giving back so we try to donate when we can.

  20. Jessica says:

    I have so many used and older cell phone models that I could donate. I never wanted to throw them away but wasn’t sure what to do with them.

  21. Christie says:

    I try to keep extra phone around in case one goes swimming. Otherwise we donate to a local charity so folks can call 911

  22. My phone is in total need of an upgrade. I have an iPhone and it’s been slowly telling me we’re done. I have been eyeing the 5s. Would love win it!

  23. Veronica says:

    I have a few old phones laying around. I gotta look into recycling them

  24. I have a few phones at home – I should do this!

  25. Oh, this seems like a great program! I love tons of old electronics laying around my house. I wonder if there’s something like this in Canada too.

  26. Tracey says:

    What a great program. I know a lot of us have electronics lying around!

  27. Amanda says:

    What an awesome program! If your old phones aren’t really “worth” much anymore you can also donate them to women’s shelters. They give them to women so they can call for help if they need to without someone knowing they have that line of communication.

  28. Nice program! I donate mine for victims of domestic violence but that’s through another carrier. Ic an see why US Cellular customers would do this.

  29. Boy the tech items so many of us love really accumulate, don’t they! Great program!

  30. We typically keep our old phones just in case we need one to go back to if our calling plan is over and our phones break. This is a great option though!

  31. Amanda says:

    We are working harder on learning to recycle better, I have a few phones that need to be recycled too!

  32. Dina says:

    We actually hold on to our old ones in case the new one breaks. This way we don’t buy their insurance and we insure we have another phone to use in case of emergency.

  33. We upgrade phones like every two years. We usually trade our phones into our provider. My husband sometimes uses phones to listen to music and tv shows while he’s at work.

  34. Toni says:

    When I upgrade, my phone goes to my hubby. But we will definitely start recycling.

  35. Chelsea says:

    I never really run electronics into the ground enough to recycle them- I usually for the the re-use of the three “R’s” and sell my electronics on Craigslist for someone else to use 🙂 It is great that these programs exist, though!

  36. Ashley M says:

    People don’t realize how toxic our electronics are to the environment. I love recycling programs like the one at US Cellular.

  37. Autumn says:

    I tend to only upgrade when I have to – or if I am really really excited about a new phone. I’d love to have an iPhone, though. And hey, the back of my Nexus 4 is cracked, so shouldn’t that count as a reason to upgrade?! 🙂 I never know what to do with my old electronics, so I have a whole little zone in my house full of old laptops, phones, etc. It’s sad.

  38. I love companies that recycle electronics. Even better when you get a reward, more companies need to do this!

  39. Dawn says:

    I currently have US Cellular and my husband has TMobile. So I look forward to hearing what you have to say.

  40. I have a pile of electronics I need to recycle. Thanks for the reminder.

  41. Felicia says:

    This is all great to know! I actually made a craft out of some old floppies 🙂

  42. None of my old things are ever worth anything. We usually put them in a drawer though, “just in case”.

  43. I usually end up selling them on eBay but we have given them to one of those recycling programs.

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