What to do with old kitchen appliances

From kettles to toasters, and ovens to dishwashers, did you know most appliances can be recycled? Despite this, only 17% of e-waste is properly disposed of.

Knowing where to start can be the hard part, but our guide is full of tips on how to repair, donate and recycle appliances. You’ll be an expert in no time!

Is it better to repair or recycle?

Before you get ahead of yourself and google ‘appliance recycling near me’, it’s better to check if your appliance can be repaired. Maybe all it needs is some tender loving care? 

If in doubt, read our guide to repairing and replacing appliances. It covers common faults, what to do about them and how long you can expect your household appliances to last.

Which appliances can be recycled?

You can recycle most appliances, big and small. This includes:

  • Blenders
  • Dishwashers
  • Freezers
  • Fridges
  • Irons
  • Kettles
  • Microwaves
  • Ovens
  • Toasters
  • Tumble dryers
  • Vacuum cleaners
  • Washing machines

If your appliance has a battery, charger or plug, you've got the green light to recycle it.

Keep an eye out for the Waste Electrical and Electronic Equipment (WEEE) logo (a crossed-out wheelie bin). This is to remind you to recycle your item instead of putting it in the bin.

I don’t need my appliance anymore: what should I do?

Perhaps you’ve renovated your kitchen and your old appliance no longer fits the space. Or you’re moving and don’t want to take it with you. Either way, if it’s in good condition, a trip to the recycling centre isn’t your only option.

Donate it

If you’ve got a working appliance on your hands, why not give it a second life through the Reuse Network? They support charities that repair donated white goods and provide them to people in need, usually at affordable prices or through social fund schemes.

You can use their search tool to find your nearest reuse centre. Some charities will collect your appliance – simply contact them directly to see if this is possible. 

Find a reuse centre or arrange collection

Resell it

If you’d like some extra cash, check out eBay, Gumtree and Facebook Marketplace. Just keep in mind — you’ll need to arrange collection or delivery with the buyer. And don’t forget to fish out any manuals or instructions – this won’t go unappreciated!

Recycle it

Recycling is the safest option if your appliance is beyond repair. If it’s put in a skip or bin, it’ll go to landfill where the materials will pollute the environment.

So, the recycling centre it is! Just check first if you need to book an appointment – some may charge if you show up without one.

There’s treasure in our 'trash' – and this includes electrical appliances, which contain a range of materials, from copper to aluminium to plastic. Specialist teams collect these during recycling and separate what's reusable and non-reusable. The recyclable materials can then be turned into new products like bicycles and lamps!

If you can’t fit a large appliance in your car and don’t want to ruin your Uber rating, contact your local council who may offer a collection service.

Find your nearest recycling centre

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