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How To Dispose Of An Old Vacuum Cleaner

Regardless of how good they are, vacuum cleaners eventually must be replaced, regardless if they are broken or not.

Broken vacuum cleaners are disposed of for a very simple reason - they are obviously broken. Vacuums that are still in working order may be replaced for many reasons, including outdated technology, energy non-efficient technology (from a modern point of few), missing parts like air filters and belts, etc.

In any case, one has to properly dispose of a unit that often contains parts made from environmentally not so friendly materials.

Published: June 9, 2022.

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Why Should One Recycle Old Vacuum Cleaners?

Vacuum cleaners are appliances mostly made out of plastic with some rubber, silicon, and metal parts.

All these parts take ages to decompose in nature and the best course of action is to take them to the nearest recycling center where the vacuums will be taken apart and scrapped - plastic will be recycled with other plastics, aluminum with other aluminum scraps, etc.

Note that vacuum cleaners may also contain:

- lithium alloys - lithium batteries obviously contain lithium, but also nickel, cobalt, and other heavy metals, not to mention other chemical compounds that are not environment friendly,

- nickel-cadmium batteries contain nickel and very toxic cadmium,

- nickel-metal-hydride batteries contain nickel and other not so healthy compounds (still healthier than cadmium or mercury though),

- copper wires, steel bearings, rubber belts, foam and felt air filters, etc.

If a vacuum cleaner is simply thrown in the garbage, all these materials will end in some trash dump, polluting the environment.

So, if You have an old vacuum cleaner that You want to dispose of, take it to the recycle center or nearest electronic/hardware store that accepts such "trash" and properly recycle it.

"Old for New" Vacuum Programs

If You have an old vacuum cleaner, in working condition or not, and You are looking for a new one, check if there are options for purchasing a new vacuum cleaner in exchange for an old vacuum cleaner.

From time to time, some online and hardware stores make such offers - they collect large amounts of old appliances, vacuums included, and recycle them properly and even earn some money from that.

Also, they sell many new appliances with a lower profit margin, but with higher volume.

For both buyer and seller, this is a win-win situation - buyers get new appliances at more affordable prices and even get rid of old vacuum cleaners properly, while stores earn some extra money from recycled appliances and from selling larger-than-usual amounts of new appliances. Also, if played right, such stores may get very important PR and establish relations with new customers.

Note: many vacuum cleaner brands offer new vacuums in exchange for their old models, often with a significant discount.

Disposing of a Broken Down Vacuum Cleaner

If a vacuum cleaner is broken out of its warranty period, first of all, consider repairing it. But, before that, ask for an estimated price of such repair since vacuum repair can come in very costly, especially if parts are harder to find.

If Your vacuum cleaner is broken and it is not economically justified to repair it, take it (or send it) to the nearest recycling center, or store that accepts such units or check the "Old for New" programs, of they offer new units that fit your needs.

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Disposing of a Working Vacuum Cleaner

If You have a working vacuum cleaner in relatively good condition, but it doesn't suit your needs anymore for whatever reason, there are a few things that You can do with it, including:

- as said before, try to find the "Old for New" vacuum cleaner program, either local or online, and get a vacuum cleaner that better suits your needs,

- donate it: money is important, but sometimes there are things more important than that - if You have a vacuum cleaner in a good condition, but You need another one, donate your old vacuum to a local donation center or similar location. Also, it is possible to make such donations online.

- swap your used but working vacuum for another used vacuum cleaner that better suits your needs, etc.

Don't Feel Bad About Your Old Vacuum Cleaner

Many users get so used to their old vacuum cleaner that they don't want to get rid of it until the unit is completely broken down - even then, they consider keeping it for "sentimental" reasons.

A vacuum cleaner is an appliance that is designed and built to serve You, the user, not vice versa. When it is broken down and when it can't be repaired at a reasonable price, or when simply there are much better, energy more efficient units on the market, go for a new model and don't look back - a new vacuum cleaner will serve your better than the old one (if chosen properly), with lower energy and maintenance costs.

Simple as that ...


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