With increasing awareness of climate change, massive eddies of plastic garbage swirling around in our oceans, and other unsettling ecological developments, environmental responsibility is becoming a priority for more of us. Thus, it’s important to know how to properly dispose of an old appliance so it doesn’t turn into an environmental hazard.
Removing an Old Appliance is a Major Job
To replace an appliance, you first have to remove the old one. To start, you have to move the heavy appliance away from the wall so you can safely disconnect pipes and electric cords. Then comes the big problem of getting the appliance out of your house or apartment. This may involve the risk of putting your back out by somehow getting it out the front door and into the back of a truck.
Why Should I Care About Disposing of my Appliance Properly?
By the time you’ve got your old appliance out of your home, you might just not care very much about where it ends up. This attitude accounts for the sight of ditched appliances on city streets or in the woods at the start of a hiking trail. You might believe that junking an appliance is not as bad as dumping chemicals, but, this is not true.
An old refrigerator contains a plethora of harmful and toxic substances – refrigerants such as Freon, contaminated oil, mercury, synthetic foam insulation. Chemicals will leak out and contaminate the surrounding area – the ground, the air, and any nearby water source. Here’s how you can dispose of your old appliance responsibly.
Use an Environmentally Responsible Removal Service
Ecologically responsible hauling companies will ensure that your old appliance is disposed of in the right way. They will remove your old appliance from your home and drop it off at a reputable recycler.
Use an Environmentally Responsible Recycling Company
Such companies offer free pickup services and give you some cash for your old appliance – typically $50 for an old but still functional refrigerator or freezer, and $15 for a working air conditioning unit or dehumidifier.
Responsible Appliance Disposal (RAD) Program
RAD works with other organizations to dispose of unwanted refrigerated appliances (fridges, freezers, window air-conditioners, or dehumidifiers) using the best methods to protect the environment. Its partners include states, utilities, manufacturers, and retailers. RAD aims to go beyond federal regulations to safeguard our planet’s climate and ozone layer.
How Do I Find a RAD Program?
Click on Find RAD Partner Programs to find a RAD partner near you. Most will pick up your old appliance directly from your residence. Some offer a financial incentive to turn in your old unit. Your old appliance will be transported to a recycling facility and be handled using the best environmental practices.
With just a little effort, you can make sure that your old appliance is disposed of responsibly. Because of the many old refrigerated appliances that are taken out of use annually, the positive environmental impact of safely removing them and properly disposing of them can be significant. You can feel good about playing your part.