Recycle small electrics now!

Small Matters

The waste electrical and electronic forum (WEEE Forum) reports an estimated 5.3 billion mobile/smartphones dropped out of use in 2022. Stacked flat on top of each other one and at an average depth of 9 mm these disused phones would cover a distance of 50,000 km which is the equivalent of travelling between Dublin (Ireland) and Sydney (Australia) approximately 3 times (17214 KM  x 3). That is a lot of old unused phones which could be recycled for good!

Mobiles Phones

Using and Replacing

As technology at home and in the office evolves, the speed at which people cease using their existing small electrical and electronic items and replace them with newer models happens with increased regularity. Days like Black Friday and Cyber Monday and gifting for Christmas increase exposure to new gadgets and drive consumers to purchase!

Small Mixed Electrical/Electronic Item – Recycle IT

What is Small?

Individuals young and old replace mobile phones, modems, toys, game consoles, chargers, virtual assistants (AI technology), smartwatches and fitness monitors without thinking too much about the older equipment. Did you know the average life of a smartphone and smartwatch is approx? 24 months.

There are reasons for a short life such as built-in obsolescence or the consumer’s perceived need or want for the newest product. Research by the German Environment Agency on the lifespan of consumer electronics can provide further information; just click here.

Small Household Electrical Items – Recycle IT

Before you dispose of old items please be aware many items contain valuable metals and plastics. With natural resources in limited supply, combined with ever-increasing waste disposal costs, it’s important that we safely recycle small electrical items so that they can be reused in new products.

Small Electrical Equipment List

Items like those listed above and below (if not fit for reuse) are usually shredded to reduce volume and are mechanically separated into their component parts (plastics, ferrous metals and non-ferrous metals). The materials collected will then be reused. For example, mixed-grade plastic can be used to make street and park furniture or multi-purpose decking. Any metals recovered are reused in the manufacture of many different types of new products including your new phone or tablet!

Small Electrical Equipment List (Continued)

What to do?

Recycle IT can help you recycle your small, old, unused or damaged electrical items including batteries of all types.  Pop your batteries in a small clear bag alongside items like kettles, toasters or small electric tools and they all will be safely recycled. Please don’t place them in the black, brown or green bin or leave them out for unauthorised collection.

Small Electrical Jukebox – Recycle IT

Recycle IT want to encourage all users of electrical items to recycle their unwanted, damaged, broken or outdated small electrical gadgets when recycling large items from their homes and offices. Clear out draws, shelves and bags used to store smaller items out of sight!

Recycle IT offer a community collection service, a business collection service and free drop-off to communities across Dublin and would like to see an increase in the amount of small electrical items received for safe recycling. If this does not work for you, simply place it in an envelope or small box and post it to us!

Please don’t horde items in the hope of future repair for reuse. Please do get items repaired quickly and if not please recycle!

For full lists of items that can be recycled by Recycle IT click here. (PFD files can be viewed or downloaded)

About Recycle IT

Recycle IT is an award-winning social enterprise providing a community, personal and business collection service for all types of waste electrical and electronic equipment (WEEE) in Dublin and surrounding counties.

During 2022 Recycle IT offered to drop off and collection services to thousands of homes, schools, charities and businesses across Dublin and surrounding areas collecting a range of WEEE which includes thousands of computers, cables, monitors, microwaves and screens

Recycle IT services are provided in partnership with WEEE Ireland. Recycle IT is supported by Pobal, Dormant Accounts, South Dublin County Council and authorized by the National Waste Collection Permit Office and the local authorities across Leinster.

For more information about Recycle IT please visit or call 01 4578321.

Recycle IT – Dublin City Social Enterprise Award Winner 2022

Recycling Power Tools, DIY and Gardening Equipment

Making Life Easier

Power tools are used in offices and warehouses, in construction, in the garden, and for household tasks such as cooking, cleaning, and around the home for purposes of drilling, cutting, shaping, sanding, grinding, polishing, painting, heating and lots more. They really help to make maintenance work and DIY that bit easier.

Power Tool – Battery Operated Drill

Do you know how long the average home power drill gets used over its lifetime? Some say 20 – 30 minutes. It is hard to know exactly but many home DIY jobs or gardening projects only need power tools or gardening equipment once a year. Many go out of date, get damaged or are hidden away and forgotten about.

Tools and Power Tool Recycling

As a team we get emails and calls with the question; can metal tools, drills, sanders, lawnmowers, leaf blowers, chainsaws, hedge trimmers, brush cutters, electric saws and more be recycled? We are delighted to say yes. If it has a plug, battery, or cable or is pure metal it can be recycled and remanufactured into helpful equipment used in cars, kitchens, hospitals, and homes. They even end up as new tools.

Old Power Tool, Screw Driver and Screws

If you can get your damaged power tools repaired, that is great. If you can’t please find your nearest recycling point, or simply visit Recycle IT for drop-off or to arrange a collection.

Recycle IT provide recycling solutions for an estimated 350 – 400 different small appliances, power tools and personal tech used around the home and garden including all types of power tools.

You can easily recycle old or damaged electric saws, power sanders, hedge cutters leaf blowers’ strimmers, power hoses, drills sewing machines, extension cables and a lot more with a drop-off or collection.

Power Leads / Cables

Loan Scheme

In the future, you might consider borrowing rather than buying? Check out hiring, lending, and borrowing electric tools online or through a local neighbourhood scheme.  For example, have a look at the Belfast Tool Library for inspiration. The inspiration may lead to local groups setting up a tool loan scheme locally.

There have been several tools sharing schemes started up in Ireland over the years, but they have ceased operation. Some with the onset of COVID. We are on the lookout for others and will update the blog post when we find a new tool-sharing scheme.

Lawner Mower for Recycling

About Recycle IT 

Recycle IT, is a social enterprise offering electrical, electronic and metal recycling services through drop-off and collection. Services are provided in partnership with WEEE Ireland and South Dublin County Council. Recycle IT is supported by Pobal and Dormant Accounts and authorized by the National Waste Collection Permit Office and the local authorities across Leinster.

For more information on Recycle IT please call 01 4578321, email or visit our website

Click here to learn more about recycling metal with Recycle IT.

Power Tools

Real Computer Recycling

It can be achieved!

The reality is nearly everything in a computer can be recycled. With our recycling initiative, we try to promote reuse first, but the majority of the computers, laptops servers and communication equipment we deal with are years out of date and beyond repair and reuse. Many have had parts removed or damaged on arrival but they all can be recycled.

Laptops for Recycling

How a standard PC can be recycled:

Keyboards, mice, and other computer accessories are usually made of plastic and are recyclable. The plastic goes through a shredding process and is then sold on the commodities market as mixed plastic scrap.

Some recyclers use optical sorters that create a very clean stream of plastic, with minimal metal contamination. Usually, the plastic is further purified and compounded with virgin plastics and pelletized. This pelletized resin can then be used as a recycled-content plastic.

For example, Recycle IT operated in a supply chain where plastic is processed for reused – to make new parts – a process that has a smaller carbon footprint, lighter environmental footprint and can deliver a cost saving over manufacturing from new materials.

Computer and Laptops

Chassis/Base – these materials are primarily made of metal (PC Chassis) or what’s known as PC/ABS plastics, which are recyclable. Some laptops also feature carbon fibre mixed with polycarbonate plastics to keep the base cool to the touch. This material is not currently widely recycled, but it can be used in waste-to-energy processes.

Printed Circuit Boards (PCBs), processors, and memory – these are made of multiple types of plastics, fibreglass and precious metals that can be recycled. Scrap copper, precious metals like gold, and some other non-ferrous metals are commonly recovered from computer circuit boards and other components.

Personal Computer System Boards

Once these materials have been sorted out they go through more specialized processes, e.g., circuit boards first into copper recovery, followed by specialized refining of the residues to recover other metals. These processes are usually accomplished through smelting or sometimes through hydro-metallurgical processing via acids or cyanide compounds in order to recover gold and other precious metals.

Batteries – when computers and laptops come into our facilities, the battery is removed from the system manually. Once removed, batteries are separated, packaged safely, and sent for recycling.  Once they reach their destination, the plastic casing is manually separated while the rest of the material is refined through a thermochemical process at high temperatures to separate various materials). The result is a metal alloy and a stony waste material separated from metals during the smelting: the metal alloys are further treated to recover cobalt, nickel, copper, and iron; lithium is typically concentrated in the stony waste material and is often recovered.

Computer cables

Cables – wire and cable that is not damaged can be reused directly. The high-grade copper can also be recovered by manually removing insulation with simple tools or by chopping wire into small pieces. After arriving at a specialised facility they undergo a hydrological process in which the small pieces of insulation float while the copper sinks. Unfortunately, the plastic insulation from the wire chopping process is a very hard to recycle and is usually sent to a waste-to-energy facility.

Screens – many manufacturers have stopped using mercury and arsenic in flat panel monitors making it easier to recycle display panels at their end-of-life. The recycling approach for LCD panels involves the separation of the glass substrate, polarizer foils, and the elements indium and copper into individual outputs. This process is carried out in Ireland, and we are delighted to be able to supply screens for safe recycling,

IT Equipment

Fans – made of plastics and metals, which can be separated and recycled.

Other parts – there are other things that go into your computer, like screws, springs, small plastic parts, etc. and they are generally made from the materials above, making them mostly recyclable. They typically make up only a small portion of the overall product.

Packaging – As part of recycling we receive a lot of corrugated cardboard, as well as other materials like plastic bags and creates. We try to reuse these items; we bale cardboard for reuse but some of the materials can’t be reused at present and are sent for heat recovery through incineration.

In support of Recycle IT – please recycle old, unused electronics. It helps the environment with reuse, reduces the mining of new raw materials and creates training and employment for people returning to work after an absence.

About Recycle IT 

Recycle IT, is a social enterprise offering electrical, electronic and metal recycling services through drop-off and collection. Services are provided in partnership with WEEE Ireland and South Dublin County Council. Recycle IT is supported by Pobal and Dormant Accounts and authorized by the National Waste Collection Permit Office and the local authorities across Leinster.

For more information on Recycle IT please call 01 4578321, email or visit our website

Click here to learn more about recycling metal with Recycle IT.

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Recycle IT is Part Funded through the Dormant Accounts Fund

Metal Recycling – Facts to know!

Community Metal Recycling

Metal is just one of many materials we use daily in our lives and it’s really worth recycling when it has served its purpose. The type of objects that can be recycled includes aluminium and steel cans, electrical appliances, silverware, legs from office desks and chairs, old household pots and pans, cooking and baking equipment, school, office or sports lockers, gates, step ladders or zippers, the list is endless.

Household Metal for Recycling

We recently learned that recycling one aluminium can, saves enough energy to run a TV for 3 hours and if that’s not enough, the amount of aluminium thrown away annually in the U.S. would rebuild their commercial air fleet four times per year.

There are interesting facts below which we hope will encourage you to think about metal as a scarce resource and not just scrap. Without metal to manufacture, our daily trips to school by car or bus or our annual holidays by train, ferry or plane might not be as easy or affordable.

Metal Sink

Interesting metal recycling facts

  1. Metal recycling is good for the national economy and the environment e.g. increased local employment and reduced emissions.
  2. Recycling one tonne of steel saves 1,136 kg of iron ore, 454 kg of coal and 18 kg of limestone
  3. You can test which metal is in your bin by using a magnet. Aluminium metal is non-magnetic whereas steel is magnetic. (Great learning for kids)
  4. Drinks cans are made from aluminium while food cans are usually made from steel.
  5. Metal recycling helps recreated new products once the original items have reached the end of their useful life.
  6. Recycling scrap metals including iron and aluminium can benefit local construction projects such as roads and bridges.
  7. Scrap metals are refashioned for use in creating bikes, cars, aircraft and other modes of transportation.
  8. The United States of America annually recycles enough ferrous scrap, by weight, to build more than 900 of San Francisco’s Golden Gate Bridges.
  9. Scrap metals aid in the storage and transportation of goods across the world with many shipping containers created from recycled metal.
  10. Reusing scrap metal has supported many industries to reduce their environmental impact e.g. reduced mining of natural and scarce resources.
  11. Recycled aluminium can be melted at a much lower temperature than new aluminium, therefore, saving on energy.
  12. Scrap metal recycling helps reduce Co2 emissions created through mining, transport, and smelting.
  13. Recycled, reused or re-purposed metals can be used to make beautiful and durable home furnishing and decorations. Think about the festive season!
  14. Recycling scrap metal reduces the need for landfill sites and leads to a positive effect on water supply, soil, and land usage.
  15. A computer contains around 1.5 kg of copper, a typical home about 100 kg and a wind turbine 5 tons.
  16. In 2014, 2.1 million tons of copper were reused in Europe, coming from end-of-life products and directly-recycled factory waste.
  17. China is the world’s second-largest user of steel scrap after the EU.
  18. Steel products can be recycled repeatedly without loss of strength.
  19. One scrapped car produces more than four steel street light posts.

Don’t Dump – Recycle Metal

Did you know?

Aluminium is made from a mined ore called Bauxite, which is converted into alumina, a fine white powder. This powder is then smelted at over 700°C, to become aluminium. The process is expensive and uses lots of resources including energy and fuel.

Many aluminium items used daily are recycled but those used in packaging like ready-to-cook foil trays are difficult to collect since it is very light and usually encrusted with food after baking. These types of items are discarded in many homes, schools, offices, pubs and restaurants without much thought for the environment or metal recycling. Maybe it’s time to try a reusable alternative to foil cooking trays and foil food wrap!


Did you know manufacturing recycled metal items requires an estimated 17 times less energy than manufacturing the same items from newly mined metal? Keep this in mind when replacing washing machines, cookers, ovens or hobs. They all contain metal that can be recycled. Recycle IT breakdown and recycle large household appliances daily. These include washing machines, dishwashers, and tumble dryers. Click here to view our list.

Metal Table Legs

About Recycle IT 

Recycle IT, is a social enterprise offering electrical, electronic and metal recycling services through drop-off and collection. Services are provided in partnership with WEEE Ireland and South Dublin County Council. Recycle IT is supported by Pobal and Dormant Accounts and authorized by the National Waste Collection Permit Office and the local authorities across Leinster.

For more information on Recycle IT please call 01 4578321, email or visit our website

Click here to learn more about recycling metal with Recycle IT.

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Recycle IT is Part Funded through the Dormant Accounts Fund

Dublin Social Enterprise Policy Consultation

What is a Social Enterprise

A Social Enterprise is an enterprise whose objective is to achieve a social, societal or environmental impact, rather than maximising profit for its owners or shareholders. It pursues its objectives by trading on an ongoing basis through the provision of goods and/or services, and by reinvesting surpluses into achieving social objectives. It is governed in a fully accountable and transparent manner and is independent of the public sector. If dissolved, it should transfer its assets to another organisation with a similar mission.

Mugshot – An award-winning Social Enterprise

The Work of Social Enterprise

Recently Minister Humphreys praised the role that Social Enterprises play in their community, particularly amid recent challenges such as the Pandemic and Ukrainian crisis.

The Minister continued: “The Social Enterprise sector is growing, and is playing an increasingly important role in supporting our transition to a social and circular economy. But we have a duty to maintain that positive momentum. We need to be ambitious about the future of this sector, which continues to experience growth and has significant potential to create jobs, and to continue to make a positive impact on society, the economy and the environment.”

Our Next Social Enterprise National Policy.

On January 31st 2023, The Wheel is hosting a Dublin-based in-person public consultation at the Guinness Enterprise Centre from 9.30am to 2pm. The information gathered from stakeholders at this consultation will then be used to inform Ireland’s next Social Enterprise National Policy.

Organised on behalf of the Department of Rural & Community Development, this consultation will allow those engaged in the space to give their thoughts on key areas, barriers to development and the current status of social enterprise in a collaborative setting.

The session will primarily focus on challenges facing social enterprises and, also, on potential opportunities over the coming years. So, bring your expertise and innovative ideas to build a policy that adequately supports the continued growth and development of social enterprise in Ireland.

Recycle IT – An award-winning Social Enterprise

Social Enterprise Policy Consultation

The event takes place on Tuesday, 31 January 2023 from 09:30 to 14:00 (GMT) at:

Guinness Enterprise Centre
Taylor’s Lane
Dublin 8

Refreshments will be provided on the day along with a light networking lunch upon the conclusion of the consultation. We hope to see you there!

If you have any queries about the event, please don’t hesitate to contact, The Wheetl via email @

About Recycle IT

Recycle IT is an award-winning, not-for-profit, social enterprise established to create employment and promote environmental awareness through recycling and reuse. We work in partnership with WEEE Ireland and are authorized by your local authority to provide electrical, electronic and pure metal recycling collections across Dublin since 2007. Recycle IT are fully compliant with WEEE collection with permit detail available here.

To speak with Recycle IT please call 01 4578321 or email us here

Visit our website

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