E-waste like TVs, cell phones, printers and computers contain hazardous materials like lead and mercury, which can cause serious environmental and health problems when disposed in landfills. Starting January 2015, it is illegal for New Yorkers to discard electronics in the trash — and could lead to a $100 fine. Instead, New Yorkers are required to recycle, resell, or donate all unwanted electronics. It’s better for the environment, and it’s better for you and your family!
Electronics to be recycled include:
- Computers, both desktops and laptops
- Computer peripherals, including any permanently attached cables or wiring
- Mice, laser pointers, and other pointing devices
- Printers, Scanners, and Fax machines weighing less than 100 lbs
- Tablets and e-readers
- Small scale servers
- Cathode Ray Tubes
- DVD players and projectors
- Digital converter boxes
- Cable or satellite receivers
- Video game consoles
- Digital music players, and other portable devices
- Cell phones**
Protecting Your Privacy
All personal and confidential data should be erased before recycling or donating your unwanted electronics. Reformatting your hard drive or deleting files is not enough. Find information on how to destroy your personal data on the electronics manufacturer’s public education website. Additionally, many manufacturers offer data security services as part of the electronic waste acceptance program, but may charge a fee for this service.
Community Recycling Events
Bring unwanted electronics to an upcoming SAFE Disposal Event, or a Lower East Side Ecology Center e-waste event near you.
Retail Drop-off Locations
There are over 90 retail locations throughout New York City where you can drop off electronics, no purchase required. Residents can visit any Goodwill, Salvation Army, Best Buy, Staples (no TVs), the Lower East Side Ecology Center, or the Gowanus E-Waste Warehouse to discard their unwanted electronics. Find a retail drop-off location near you using the map below.
**Cell Phones: The Mayor’s Office to Combat Domestic Violence supports the Verizon Wireless Hope line Program®. Bring your old cell phones to any Verizon Wireless store, to be refurbished, reprogrammed to 911 and given to domestic violence victims or sold with the resulting funds awarded to local domestic violence organizations.
Mail-back programs allow you to send your unwanted electronics back to the manufacturer for recycling, for free. Find your electronics manufacturer’s mail-back information on their public education website.
**For Cell Phone take-back programs, consult DSNY’s list of service providers.
Apartment buildings with more than 10 units can enroll in this free and convenient pickup service. With e-cycleNYC, electronics are recycled domestically using the strictest industry and environmental standards available. Data on electronics will be fully erased by e-cycleNYC as part of the recycling process. Find out if you are eligible and sign up for e-cycleNYC.
Donate or Sell
The NYC Stuff Exchange is a great resource to find places to donate or sell your working electronics in your neighborhood.
For instructions on recycling any items not listed on this page, visit nyc.gov/recycle.