Debbie's Deals: How to recycle computers, VCRs, printers, cell phones and other electronics for free

Got an old computer you want to get rid of? A broken VCR? A printer?

Under Colorado law, you can't just throw these items in the trash anymore. And while the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment has a website with recycling information, they also warn that you should, "expect to pay a recycling fee."

However, I found a way to recycle many of these items for free at Best Buy and Staples.

BEST BUY

Best Buy will recycle computers, keyboards, laptops, laptop batteries, DVD players, VCRs, projectors, TiVOs, vacuums, rechargable batteries, cell phones and radios, ink and toner, CDs, DVDs, PC games, cameras and camcorders and other items FOR FREE.

They do charge $25 for each TV and computer monitor they recycle for you. That fee started last year.

There are limits on some items, such as Best Buy will only take three batteries per person, per day. See the details on what Best Buy recycles, what it limits and more information about the program on Best Buy's website.

By the way, if you recycle a used printer at Best Buy, they'll give you 15 percent off a new HP printer.

STAPLES

Staples also recycles computers, satellite receivers, calculators, camcorders, CD/DVD/Blu-ray players, computer speakers, desktop copiers, cordless phones and much more.

Unlike, Best Buy, Staples will recycle computer monitors for FREE. (But Staples does not take televisions.)

See the list of what Staples takes and its limits on the Staples website.

Some items, like tablets, mobile phones, iPods and eReaders may be trade-in eligible. Read more about the trade-in program here.

OTHER OPTIONS

Two readers suggested other companies that recycle electronics, they are:

Blue Star Recyclers in Denver and Colorado Springs. Lisa said they are a great company doing great things.

PC & Parts in Loveland. Kim said they will recycle computers, parts, accessories, cables and printers for free. They take flat screen monitors for free too, but they don't take CRT monitors or really large office printers.

Note, if you're recycling a computer, laptop, phone or other item with personal information on it, the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment warns that "simply deleting files and reformatting the hard drive doesn't guarantee all your data will be destroyed. Use special disk-wiping software designed to protect sensitive data or remove your hard drive and destroy it."

Thanks to Polly, Lisa, Linda and Kim for their help with this information. If you find a place to recycle a TV for free, e-mail me, Debbie (Debbie@thedenverchannel.com).

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