free electronics recycling service

Responsible Electronics Recycling

Responsible Electronics Recycling

I saw a statistic that blows me away: electronics make up 2% of the material in landfills but account for 70% of the toxins. Since I began my company, Sensible Recycling, I am amazed by the amount of people I meet that don’t know what to do with their old electronics. My neighbor across the street threw their old computer in the trash today, despite knowing what I do for a living. Are we killing ourselves because of our lack of understanding, or is it too difficult to do the right thing because electronics recycling isn’t accessible?

Recycling electronics is not like glass, paper, or plastic. You can’t just throw it in a bin and stick it on the curb. You have to horde it and wait for one of those community recycling days, or take it to a scrap yard. Even if you do that, do you know if your material is being recycled responsibly, and what is responsible recycling of electronics?

As the owner of an electronics recycling company, my definition of responsible recycling differs than that of many recycling companies out there. If you are throwing your electronics on the curb, I hope they don’t contain data. Your hard drive contains your entire online life, don’t let some guy in a pickup truck looking for scrap metal grab it. God knows where it goes from there. For the same reasons, don’t take your electronics to a scrap yard. Scrap yards recycle metal, and while they may take your electronics, you have no guarantee that it is being handled properly. Some other recycling company may buy that material to be processed overseas, or it may wind up being bought by company and handled properly. You just don’t know.

Find someone that is recycling, not refurbishing. I am biased on this point because I do not refurbish material. Granted some material I receive is reusable, and to that point it can and will be reused. I do not refurbish because it creates issues with lesser material. If you are solely looking for material to refurbish, then what happens to broken or obsolete material? Refurbishing also requires a lot of expense for various certifications and time to test products and load new operating systems. By not focusing on refurbishing, all material can be broken down to the base components, sorted and processed for outlets that are looking to recover the metals for reuse. Components that are reusable can be sold to someone that specializes in building, repairing, or refurbishing. This process allows for my company to recycle all electronics that come our way, even the ones that are unwanted elsewhere, responsibly. I don’t need special certifications that a refurbisher needs. I can also offer my services free of charge because I have less overhead. I also take care of the responsible side because I can use a certified downstream for some items, and send directly to a refiner for other items.

Another issue to consider when recycling electronics is making sure your data is destroyed. If you are getting rid of your computers at the local city or county waste department, they aren’t destroying your data. If you are taking your computers or other data containing items to the scrap yard, they aren’t destroying your data. If you are throwing away your old electronics, your data is definitely not being destroyed. It is the policy of Sensible Recycling to destroy all hard drive data, be it by sanitizing or physical destruction. We also provide serialized certificates of destruction for this service. We can do all of this free of charge because our overhead is low because everything is broken down and recycled.

All electronics recycling companies are not created equally. We all have our specialty, or niche. Some may charge, some may buy, or some can do it for free. It is our goal at Sensible Recycling to make recycling responsibly easy, accessible, and free. The important thing is to make sure your material is handled correctly.

For more information, contact us.

free electronics recycling event

Electronics Recycling Event

Free Electronics Recycling Event

Sensible Recycling will be hosting our first electronics recycling event on Saturday, June 18th and Reunion Bank in St. Augustine Beach, Florida.  Please come out and bring your old computer and electronics so we can recycle them properly.  We are also providing free on-site hard drive destruction to help keep your data safe and secure.  If you have any questions, please give us a call at 904-327-3426 or contact us. Thanks!

Electronics Recycling Event

Electronics Recycling Event

hard drive recycling

Wiping your hard drive


Why reformatting will not destroy your data.

Reformatting may seem like the best way to erase your private data, but it isn’t.  It is fast, and it does seem to make your old data disappear if you try to find it again.  The problem is, your old data is still recoverable.  The process of reformatting your electronic media, like hard drives and flash drive, is nothing more than erasing the current file structure of everything on your disk and replacing it with with a new one.  Think of it like this: You have a file cabinet and all of your information is stored away in the correct files.  Imagine if you just dumped all your info out of the files and back into the cabinet and put your empty files back on top, ready to be filled again.  If you went looking for your old info in the new files, you wouldn’t find it because it is scattered about elsewhere in the cabinet.  Obviously, this is a simplistic way to look at it, but you should get the idea.  The information still exists, it is just harder to find.  The same is true of your hard drive.  Don’t expect your information to be erased when you reformat your hard drive.  There are programs that exist to recover reformatted data.  In order to permanently erase your data, you need to overwrite it or destroy it.

There are different levels of overwriting your data.  Sensible Recycling uses the latest methods of ATA Secure Erase and DoD 5220.22-m methods.  We do this by using multi-bay wiping stations.   Data is stored in binary code, which is a series of 1’s and 0’s.  When your drive is wiped by Sensible Recycling, all of your data rewritten with new 1’s and 0’s, sometimes multiple times.  After this process, your data is completely unrecoverable.  A simple dive format can not offer you this kind of data protection.  We can also physically destroy your hard drives, adding an extra layer of protection if you choose.  Remember, all of our services are free of charge.  So next time you are getting rid of your old computers, make the sensible choice and call Sensible Recycling to destroy your electronic data.


electronics recycling

Community Events

We can help bring awareness to your neighborhood and community by hosting an electronics recycling drive.  Help keep the environment clean by keeping the harmful products in electronics and computers out of the waste stream.  Save energy by recycling so the materials found in electronics can be reused to make new devices.  This is a great opportunity to help clean up your neighborhood.  We can be part of your HOA dumpster day.  Drive traffic to your business or organization, and help the environment at the same time.  Your customers will appreciate you for it.  Let’s help keep Jacksonville, St. Augustine and the surrounding North Florida communities clean.  Contact us to find out how we can get started today!