Cathode Ray Television (or CRT's) were widely used in the early 2000's but since then have all but been replaced with LCD Televisions. It's likely that you have them lying around in your house unused. Due to mercury contamination, the proper recycling of CRT's is more important than most of electronics. Because of this the state of California has included CRT's in the CEW statewide recycling program. This article will go over what is inside your CRT Television and how you should recycle them.
What are CRT TV's made of?
Older CRT models include various amounts of hazardous materials that are toxic in landfills and other waste streams if no recycled property. Older color and monochrome CRTs may have been manufactured with toxic substances, such as cadmium, in the phosphors. Other toxic wastes include leaded glass, mercury and beryllium. These toxins seep from landfills into water sources if disposed of improperly. Because modern electronic devices use far less toxic materials, it is especially important to recycle CRT with a responsible electronics recycling company.
How are CRT TV's recycled?
CRT TV's can only be handled in California by facilities that have been inspected and approved by the Department of Toxic Substances or DTSC. Many approved electronic waste collectors deliver their CRT TV's to proper hazardous recycling facilities for dismantling. Rica Recycling has partnered with E-Recycling of California to handle their CRT TV waste streams. At these facilities, the TVs are dismantled into their raw components and separated into different groups. The hazardous materials are sent off for further treatment, while the non-hazardous materials are shredded and then sorted for further refining.
Where can I recycle my CRT TV?
RecycleWhere.org is a great resource for finding a local recycling center to properly dispose of your electronics waste. Rica Recycling offers a free Drop Off Service at their Hayward facility and provides a Pick Up Service for businesses in the Bay Area. Please recycle your CRT TVs! They are the most common hazardous electronic waste items and the benefit to our environment and fresh water sources would be huge if they are kept out of our landfills.