What Happens When You Recycle Your Phone?

Many of us want to make a difference, particularly when it comes to reducing the amount of waste we produce. Whilst we may have the best intentions, it can be challenging to know where to start. Luckily, mobile phone recycling can help.

Selling your old devices for cash is a great way to make a little extra money, but people are also now realising the environmental importance of mobile phone recycling. This can only be a good thing, and the number of people who use our phone recycling service is increasing

However, many people often ask us what we actually do with the phones once we take them off your hands. So let’s find out why recycling old phones is good for the planet and how it happens.

Determining Whether the Phone Can Be Refurbished

Before we even think about recycling an old mobile phone, we first have to decide whether the handset can be refurbished and resold. Reusing old mobile phones is one of the most important aspects of any recycling scheme. An old mobile phone that may be junk to you could significantly impact the environment if disposed of incorrectly.

Finding a new home for a second-hand mobile is the best solution, particularly if the phone is in good working condition. Just because a device isn’t useful to you anymore doesn’t mean someone else won’t be able to benefit from it.

We thoroughly inspect all the phones we receive here at Mazuma Mobile to determine if they can be resold straight away as a working handset, need a little TLC from us before resale, or whether recycling is the best option. Once we’ve refurbished a device, it’s put up for sale on the Mazuma Shop, often for significantly less than the recommended retail price. But what happens to the devices we can’t refurbish and resell?

  refurbishing a phone

Extracting Valuable Materials

If repairing a device isn’t economically viable, it needs to be recycled correctly, and there is still value in the individual components. When it comes to extracting the valuable and recyclable materials inside a handset, the work must be undertaken by a professional phone recycling company that knows how to dismantle the device safely.

Mobile phones contain small quantities of precious and semi-precious metals such as platinum, gold, silver, copper and nickel. If reclaimed from defunct devices, these metals can be melted down and used again. Most metals can be recycled infinitely, so it makes complete sense to strip them from old phones rather than using new metal.

Any reclaimable plastics and glass in the device will also be stripped and recycled if possible.

Dealing with Dangerous Substances

Mobile phones contain traces of hazardous materials, including mercury, lead and cadmium. Circuit boards and microchips can also contain lead and arsenic, which are poisonous to living organisms if ingested in large amounts.

If you throw an old phone in the bin with your regular waste and the handset ends up in a landfill site, there’s a real danger that the toxic substances inside the device could leak out and contaminate the local water source or soil. This can have a severe impact on local ecosystems and should be avoided.

All these sustenances pose little threat to you when they’re safely inside your phone, but once you start dismantling a device, exposing the components and disposing of them, they become dangerous to the environment and need to be handled with care. That’s why proper recycling of old mobile phones by professionals is crucial to make sure the hazardous parts are disposed of correctly.


Time for the Reclaimed Materials to be Sold or Recycled

Once the old devices have been stripped of their valuable parts, and the hazardous components have been correctly disposed of, it’s time to send the various reclaimed materials off to someone who can make good use of them. We may even use the parts from your old mobile phone to help repair another device ahead of resale.

The metal stripped from a single handset might not seem like much, but when you consider that here at Mazuma Mobile, we receive 20,000 devices a month, the 5%  of those we aren’t able to re-home still equates to 1,000 handsets a month that can be disassembled and stripped of valuable and recyclable parts. That’s a lot of e-waste that is being diverted away from landfills!

Recycling mobile phones mazuma mobile

Mazuma Mobile Recycles and Reuses Your Old Mobile Phones

At Mazuma, we ensure that your unwanted old phones are recycled in the most environmentally-friendly way possible or given a new lease of life for someone else to use. Mazuma follows sustainable recycling practices and extends the life of old phones so someone else gets an affordable working phone either in the UK or a developing country.

At Mazuma Mobile, we make sure no recycled mobiles go to waste or end up in landfill sites where harmful toxins within phone batteries could pollute the environment.

So, if you want to make a difference and earn a bit of cash simultaneously, sell your device to Mazuma Mobile and let us take care of the rest.

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