CD and DVD Recycling

So many of us have masterful collections of music and movies in CD and DVD form. And so many of us NEVER use them. With itunes, Netflix, and a million cable TV channels, these discs are just becoming a thing of the past. If you are looking to clear out your collection, I have some helpful tips.

-If you want to keep the actual music from your CDs, upload them to an itunes account or download them to your computer. If you download them on your computer, make sure you back them up on an external hard drive or other device.

-You can donate CDs or DVDs you no longer use. There are numerous organizations that accept them, including hospitals, libraries, VA organizations, etc. Many non profit organizations also accept them to create care packages or sell in their fund raising efforts. Here are several I found:

Operation Gratitude – This organization creates care packages for the military, including those stationed overseas, the Wounded Warrior Project, and veterans groups. Click here for a list of the items they accept.

KidFlicks – This website collects children’s DVDs for donation to hospitals. Their goal is to create a DVD library at every hospital in the US. Click here for the address to mail DVDs to.

GotBooks.com - This organization is based out of MA and accepts books, CDs and DVDs.

-You can also recycle CDs and DVDs. Did you know that you shouldn’t throw away your discs or cases? Why not, you ask? There is the obvious answer that they take up room in landfills. However, CDs have materials used to make them that won’t decompose. That means they will stay in landfills indefinitely.  CD cases are made of #7 plastic and many recycling facilities don’t accept #6 and #7 plastics. These must be properly processed so that they can be recycled. There are several organizations that do this as well. Here are a couple:

CD Recycling Center of America – You simply separate your jewel cases, CDs and inserts and mail them to their donation center. Their website is full of information on their process and why they recycle.

ACT (Alternative Community Training) – This Missouri based organization that supports career and community integration programs for individuals with disabilities. They accept donations of CDs and DVDs which they recycle to assist them with their fundraising efforts.

I have a lot of CDs, and I will be recycling what I can’t donate. In an effort to downsize years ago, I got rid of all of my CD cases and many places won’t accept donations without the original cases. At least there are ways to recycle them though!

CD

Happy Recycling!

~Erin

Spring Greening – Proper Paint Disposal

Have you ever painted any part of your house? Have you ever had trouble deciding on colors? Have you ever had your guest room wall look like this:

IMG_0223

Seriously, the process was ridiculous over here. But we FINALLY chose colors and have painted the whole bottom floor of our house. We had previously painted the kids room so the only thing left is the master bedroom and bathroom. That is a project for another day…..I don’t even want to look at another paint brush for a while.

We have also been cleaning and reorganizing our garage lately and have found a ton of paint cans leftover from the previous owners of the house. Combine those with our recent painting extravaganza and here is what we were left with.

Paint CansKeep in mind that this is just the pile we were getting rid of! We still have leftover paint for touch ups, etc that I am going to find some fabulous temporarily functional way to organize, I’m sure.

So what to do with all of these paint cans? They were not completely empty so you can’t just throw them away. Well, you can, but at the expense of filled up landfills and a chemically infused environment. The best way to handle items like this is to find a hazardous waste recycling place near you. You can search online for ‘hazardous waste disposal’ or ‘hazardous waste recycle’ and hopefully several options will come up. Our closest disposal center is over an hour away, but it is well worth it to know we’re disposing of these items properly. Just to illustrate the types of things these recycling centers do, take a peek at this link. This is for the Colorado Springs, CO facility, but many places offer the same services. Here are a few things that our local place does:

-Recycling or proper disposal of chemicals. This includes paint, but also solvents, motor oil, bleach, antifreeze, pesticides, fertilizers, and a ton of other household chemicals.

-Recycling of electronics, such as computers, TVs, microwaves, printers and cell phones. Most electronics have components that are harmful to the environment when thrown into a landfill. They must be properly disposed of in a safe and healthy manner.

-Porcelain recycling – They accept sinks, toilets and ceramic tiles which can be crushed and recycled into material used for building roads.

-‘Drop and Swap’ Program – Our facility has an area for products that were dropped off but can still be used, such as paint, primer and oil. These items are offered free of charge to the community.

I have looked into facilities in Colorado, Arizona and Georgia and there are definitely some differences. Some are open every weekday, while some facilities may have a once a month drop off day. Some accept tires and building materials, others don’t. So it may require a little research to find a place to take your items. But it’s worth it. You can clean out your home, garage, shed, etc and know that you are doing the best you can for the environment.

One more bonus of our local place was that it was free! Some of them aren’t, so this was great for us. They did request a non-perishable food donation though. I had a few items I was saving for a food bank, but I hadn’t taken them yet, so we dropped them off when we took our paint cans in.

Imagine that…..a clean garage, consideration for the Earth, and a charitable donation all at once.

~Erin