The majority of countries imposed certain regulations on recycling kitchen and home appliances with the increasing concern about the environment. Especially in Europe and in the USA, you might even get a fine of you throw away old appliances along with your normal waste.
What appliances should be recycled?
If the government in your country imposed recycling of electrical appliances by law, they probably offer options for people that want to recycle them. You can call a Green Line and someone will come to pick up your old fridge, microwave or washing machine. For some appliances like microwaves, you can give your old machine for a new one, having the peace of mind that your old device is recycled correctly.
The microwave oven is a recyclable appliance as well. It is important not to throw it in nature or with the common waste, as it has many recyclable parts that are also harmful for the environment.
Recyclable appliances thrown in nature have many harmful effects
- They are 10 times more polluting than common waste
- Almost 75% of a microwave oven can be recycled and the components can be reused for making new appliances
- Most of governments offer programmes encouraging people to recycle these devices and to change them for new ones. This is a win-win situation as the energy saved by replacing old appliances is huge.
- Most of new devices are less consuming than the old ones, so there is an incentive for everyone to recycle old appliances such as microwave ovens often.
Old electric appliances have many elements that are non-degradable, such as mercury and cadmium. If these substances reach the soil, they will be polluted for a long time. Freon is a substance commonly used to manufacture fridges, and it can be completely recycled to make new appliances. Freon release in atmosphere is one of the main factors of pollution.
Plastic is a non-degradable material that has toxic emissions in the atmosphere. Microwave ovens are made of special plastic that would degrade even harder, besides the metal parts that are also recyclable and can be reused.
Mercury is a part of batteries, LCD screens and switches. Mercury intoxication can lead to serious health problems such as cancer, diabetes and lungs problems.
How are electric appliances recycled?
It is the responsibility of each one of us to identify the closest place where you can recycle your appliances. There should be a recycling spot at your local grocery store where you can bring small appliances and batteries, but if you have a bigger appliance, you can check for a brand offering you the possibility to send the old appliance and replace it with the new one.
You can find programs of such kind for your microwave oven as well. Make sure you are buying a reputed brand that would also have a pick-up service, so you can give the old appliance and get the new one easily. Many brands offer this service as it is a great way to encourage clients to recycle.