Are Microwaves Recyclable?

June 7, 2021

The microwave is a staple of the modern household – quick, easy, and efficient. For those that struggle with cooking or have busy schedules, for example, your microwave provides the perfect solution – heating leftover foods or cooking simple meals in no time.

However, like any electrical appliance, a microwave has a finite lifespan, typically ranging anywhere from 5-7 years, depending on how much it is used and how frequently it is cared for. So, if you need to replace or upgrade your microwave, you may be thinking, “are microwaves recyclable?”

Whatever the motive, it’s important to know how to dispose of a microwave oven. Microwaves are one of the most common e-waste items and should not be simply disposed of alongside regular trash. With e-waste presenting a significant problem to Australia’s environment, microwave recycling has never been more necessary.

Below, we’ll discuss recycling old microwave ovens and address the questions of “are microwaves recyclable?” and “where can I recycle my old microwave?”

Are Microwaves Recyclable?

So, are microwaves recyclable? Yes, fortunately, microwaves can be recycled. Most parts of a microwave are readily recyclable. However, specific interior components, such as the capacitor, can be dangerous to handle and recycle.

Can you throw out a microwave? For the most part, microwaves are considered hazardous waste and cannot be thrown in the trash at all. The disposal of a microwave can be difficult as certain appliance features require specific care and handling to not end up in environmentally damaging landfill.

So, where can you take old microwaves? Microwaves need to go to specific recycling centres to be disassembled adequately before they’re recycled. Not sure where to find these recycling centres? Maybe you don’t have the time of day to make the trip.

Thankfully, Ridly offer the most efficient, timesaving, affordable and environmentally sustainable solution for all white goods removal, including microwaves. Starting at just $69 for household rubbish removal services, no other removal service can match our affordability. Our expert team of friendly rubbish removalists will arrive at your house in no time and make your life easy. They’ll lift, move, and recycle all white goods that are no longer needed. Looking for same-day removal? No worries! Call Ridly on 0491 181 130 and request a quote.

Why Is Recycling Old Microwave Ovens Important?

Australians own upwards of 45 million household appliances at any given time, with more than 2.5 million of these appliances discarded each year improperly, contributing to landfill and consequently harming the environment.

As buried materials decompose into the ground, they are prone to releasing toxic chemicals and or greenhouse gases that heavily contribute to the ever-increasing problem of global warming. Landfills have a distinctive effect on nature, surrounding wildlife, water systems, air pollution and humans themselves as they disrupt the natural evolution of ecosystems. For example, water that rinses through the toxic chemicals in landfill usually contains high levels of toxic metal and ammonia. If this de-oxygenated, contaminated water spreads into rivers and lakes, it not only affects our water supply but has the potential to result in the death of aquatic life.

Do Old Microwaves Leak Radiation?

It is important to note when considering, “do old microwaves leak radiation?” that microwave ovens use electromagnetic radiation to heat food. As such, they can leak when broken or altered and are a major factor when considering whether or not are microwaves recyclable. However, if improperly discarded in landfill, it is more likely than not that radiated chemicals will seep into the soil.

Recycling unwanted white goods such as microwaves is undeniably beneficial for the environment. Moreover, valuable materials such as metal and plastic can be recovered and reused through recycling for future products, reducing emissions that would otherwise be present in the production of new materials and subsequently prevent potentially useful components from contributing to landfill.

When considering “are microwaves recyclable?” it should be said that recycling your microwave may land some cash in your pocket. Instead of paying fees for dumping, you can earn some money from recycling centres depending on how much material can be recovered.

Ridly can ensure that your items are taken to one of the few recycling facilities where 100% of its materials are re-processed & repurposed. This way, you can be sure that we find the best solution for you and an environmentally friendly solution for your microwave through our white goods removal service.

6 Solutions for How to Dispose of a Microwave Oven

Hopefully, by now, we’ve answered your question of “are microwaves recyclable?” and expressed the importance of recycling old microwave ovens. However, there are a number of different methods that could work for you whilst still correctly disposing of your microwave and other white goods in a sustainable fashion. Let’s take a closer look at some of them:

1. Reselling the Microwave

If your microwave is still functional, or you’ve just decided it was time for an upgrade, reselling the appliance on to your friends or family is always a solid choice for how are microwaves recyclable. You may even find that certain appliance retailers in your area will accept and purchase your microwave back from you.

Selling a microwave oven and its parts to a retailer could earn you some solid cash as scrapyards will happily salvage the copper, internal processors, metal parts and steel components. Furthermore, your microwave won’t end up in a landfill, which is always good news!

To ensure that you get the most value from the sale of your machine, it would be wise to engage in proper research and utilise the correct sales platform(s).

What are the limitations to reselling?

  • It must be useable and worth payment still
  • You must be aware of the selling value of the machine. Especially when selling to a retailer, you may be subject to hard bargaining
  • You will have to transport the microwave to the chosen location yourself

2. Donation

Similar to selling the microwave on, simply donating the appliance is always a viable option, especially if the microwave is nearing the end of its’ lifespan.

What are the benefits of donating?

  • Helping those who are financially disadvantaged or unable to purchase a microwave

What are the limitations to donating?

  • Having to engage in manual labour to transport the machine
  • Specific charities may not receive the microwave as relevant tests need to be conducted and paid to ensure the appliance is safe. 

3. Kerbside Collection

Kerbside collection offers the chance to quickly remove old microwaves that are no longer useful or functional. Most councils in Sydney will provide free kerbside collection, however, it may take several weeks, if not more, before your microwave is removed from the premises.

Leaving your microwave out of the property for even just a few weeks can be dangerous for the area's natural inhabitants.

As a Sydney resident, nothing can look worse than a heavy accumulation of unwanted kerbside junk, wondering when the council will show up. We understand just how frustrating it can be – that’s why we offer same day Kerbside collection services to help keep your front lawn in top shape.

4. Take Your Microwave to the Repair Shop

Has your microwave broken down, but you can’t afford a new one? Maybe there’s a sense of loyalty to the microwave that has served you well for so many years…

Rather than thinking, “can you throw out a microwave?” there are plenty of white goods repair services around Sydney. For example, appliance repair stores will accept and pay for parts within a broken microwave as they can salvage these materials and use them for their stock or repair.

5. Drop Off at a Nearby Recycling Centre

As of late 2020, there are 90 community recycling centres within NSW as the government pushes to increase the recycling rate. Are microwaves reyclable? Yes! In fact, you can take it to a specific centre to make sure of it. Depending on your suburb and the amount of rubbish to be dropped off, this method could come free of charge.

However, this method would require you to lift and transport the microwave yourself whilst retaining the risk of hazardous waste leaking into the environment. In addition, it is uncertain how long it would take for the microwave to be properly disposed of – it could take days or even weeks.

When weighing up your options between taking the microwave to a local waste depot or contracting a rubbish removal service, it is crucial to consider that these waste depots do not have a particularly reputable standing for being environmentally considerate when disposing of waste.

6. Professional Household Rubbish Removal Service

If you’re looking to take away all the hassle and stress of figuring out where can you take old microwaves, you can always rely on Ridly rubbish removal service. We guarantee that your waste will be disposed of ethically and on the same day as your enquiry if desired.

Sick of searching through the google results of ‘Where can I recycle my old microwave?”. We understand. Request a quote today from Ridly and enjoy the peace of mind that comes with reliable, transparent, and expert service. Are microwaves recyclable? Yes, they are. Help us preserve the environment and remember always to recycle when possible.

Ready to be rid of it? Grab a quick quote from our team.

Call us on 0488 846 336.

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