How to Dispose of TV: A Guide to Responsible Disposal


Disposing of an old TV can be a daunting task. With many options to choose from, it can be challenging to determine which method is the most environmentally and economically responsible. It is crucial for the environment to dispose of these electronics correctly, given the number of hazardous materials contained within them such as lead and mercury.

The following article provides you with a comprehensive guide to disposing of an old TV while keeping the environment and your community’s health in mind.

Donating or Selling

If your TV is still functioning, selling or donating it is one of the most responsible ways to dispose of it. There are plenty of alternatives for doing so:

Selling Online

The prevalence of online marketplaces such as Craigslist, eBay, and Facebook Marketplace allows you to sell or give away your TV if it is still in working condition. It is crucial to ensure the TV is in good condition and advertised at a reasonable price to initiate a sale.

Donating to Non-Profit Organizations

There are several non-profit organizations that accept functioning electronic devices, including TVs. Donating to one of these organizations is a great way to send off an old TV while supporting a good cause. Additionally, donating an electronic device to an organization such as a school, community center or church could result in a tax write-off.

Preparing Your TV for Sale or Donation

Before donating or selling your TV, ensure it is cleaned and free of any personal information on it. Removing any information reduces the risk of identity theft. Also, remember to check with the programs you plan to donate to for any specific instructions on preparing the electronic device.


If your TV is not functioning or is no longer of use, recycling it is your next option. There are several benefits to recycling old electronics properly:

Environmental Benefits

Recycling electronics lowers the number of materials ending up in a landfill and ensures that hazardous materials such as mercury, lead, and cadmium are disposed of correctly – preventing them from contaminating rivers, groundwater sources, and ecosystems. Disposing of old electronics properly ensures they won’t end up in landfills, polluting the environment and negatively affecting human health and wildlife.

Recycling Programs

There are several eco-friendly benefits to recycling old electronics, and many towns or cities have their own local recycling programs. Call your local recycling center, and ask if they recycle electronics such as TVs. If your town or city does not offer this service, ask them for a local program or what recommendations they could make.

Federal Programs

Several federal programs help to solve the issue of recycling old electronics. e-Stewards, for instance, is a certification program that allows individuals to search for e-waste recycling facilities in their area. The US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) also offers its own collection programs, and several TV companies have recycling programs available.

Private Recycling Companies

Many private companies will recycle electronics or refurbish them. Private recycling companies frequently offer payment for TVs, and some even provide options for curbside pickup or drop-off locations.

Disposing via a Collection Event

Collection events are a convenient option to dispose of a TV, and generally, the collected TVs are taken and recycled professionally. Here are some things to think about when considering this option:

Collection Event Information

Collection events typically require individuals to bring their TV to a designated drop-off area or event location. You may need to pay a small fee in some cases. Check with your town or city to determine whether there is a nearby collection event.

Benefits of Drop-off

Recycling through a drop-off center or collection event helps to ensure the proper disposing of hazardous materials contained within the TV. Additionally, your community may offer financial incentives for participating in the program.

Preparation for Drop-off

Verify with the collection event if the TV will require any preparation before drop-off, such as removing the base or packaging it up correctly and securely. Following these procedures will help to ensure the safe transportation and processing of your TV.


If you decide not to dispose of your TV, re-purposing it is an excellent alternative. Here are some practical and creative ideas:

DIY Aquarium or Terrarium

Removing the TV’s backlight and backlight guide and adding a few necessary pieces, such as plexiglass, a filter, rocks, sand, plants, and lights, can convert it into an aquarium or terrarium. If no longer in use, a TV console could be perfect for accommodating your new creation.

Picture Frame for Slideshows

You may want to consider using an old TV as a picture frame. Add your favorite pictures, and set the TV to display them as a slideshow. This idea is also great for showcasing art or professional photography.

Workout Room TV

If you have an open space in your workout room, consider using an old TV as a workout-specific TV. Use online tutorials to learn workouts or watch workout videos. Sometimes having a designated TV for your workouts is perfect for keeping you motivated and on track.

Console Table

Transforming an old console TV into a console table can be a unique way to incorporate it into other parts of your house. Simply remove the electronic components and add a shelf or two to provide storage or add a vase or flowers to allow for decoration.

Junk Removal Services

If all other options are not available or not suited to your needs, your last resort is to consider professional junk removal services. Here are some pros and cons to consider:

Benefits of Junk Removal Services

Professional junk removal services take care of the entire process for you, including the transportation of the TV to an eco-friendly recycling facility. Additionally, it saves you time, especially if you have other bulky items that need removal.

Disadvantages of Junk Removal Services

Professional junk removal services could be more expensive than other options. They may also not be financial incentives programs such as tax write-offs that come with donation programs. Junk removal services do not promote eco-friendliness as much as other options.

Locating and Hiring Junk Removal Services

To locate and hire professional junk removal services, search locally for reviews and ratings or ask for recommendations from friends or family members. Once you have found a trustworthy company, call them to discuss pricing and scheduling.


Ultimately, disposing of an old TV correctly takes some effort. It is vital to select the best disposal method for the environment and your community’s health while also considering your specific needs personally. There are financial incentives for many of these programs, environmental benefits, and creative and practical ways to repurpose old electronics. So, do the right thing and make an effort to dispose of your TV properly.

Last Minute Tips

  • Verify that the donation or collection program you are using accepts TV devices
  • Ensure that your TV is safe for transportation and disposal, whether dropping off or hiring junk removal services
  • Try re-purposing your old TV as an alternative to disposing of it altogether

Your TV’s disposal may seem like a small task, but by taking responsible steps, you’re doing your part in supporting the environment and your community.

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