If you look at the energy consumption of a typical desktop computer over its entire life, half of that energy will be used during manufacture, so before it’s even out of the box. It’s an absolute no-brainer to give that computer as long a life as possible. By buying a second-hand or refurbished, you are making a genuine saving on carbon emissions. You’ll sidestep adding the electronic waste (e-waste) mountain too. The UK currently produces 1.45 million tonnes of e-waste every year!
Laptops, mobiles, tablets and computers all use scarce, non-renewable raw materials. So if you finally decide you really do need to upgrade, try to pass your tech on to someone who needs it.
MoneySavingExpert shares useful tips about what to look for and where to buy used and refurbished phones.
Emmaus Reboot is a local social enterprise that wipes, refurbishes and resells used computers and The Centre for Computing History takes donations of a huge range of tech that might be archived, used to teach repair, refurbished to be sold or even out on display.
GAME and CeX stores buy and sell tech and games. One advantage of buying from a shop is that you should get a warranty. John Lewis tend to give longer warranties than many other sellers.
Local online purchases are often good value too e.g. Gumtree but you won’t get a warranty.
If you want to buy a new mobile, consider a Fairphone. This modular device is and easily repairable and more ethically produced than others.
Check with the manufacturers – some, like Apple and Dell offer refurbished products.