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Cool Ways to Recycle Computer Hardware - Diy Projects


Green and Awesome!

So you've bought a new computer, monitor, keyboard, mouse, a shed load of RGB LEDs. But now you're faced with the dilemma of what to do with your old computer and peripherals. The answer: Recycle and Reuse! Of course, depending on the condition of your old hardware, you may decide to keep it as spares rather than take it to pieces.

Now, sure it doesn't sound particularly exciting, but this guide is here to show you that there's some pretty sweet stuff you can do with your old tech. And if you're the kind of person who loves to make things, then you'll love these ideas!

If you decide not to keep or make anything out of your old electronics, first consider if anyone else could make use of them and whether it might be worth donating them, if not and you are thinking about throwing them away make sure you dispose of them properly. Depending on where you live, there will normally be facilities to dispose of electronics.

The Computer

There is an awesome 'Instructable' which has tons of ideas for what to do with all the things inside your computer case (CD Drive, Floppy Drive, Hard Drive, Power Supply, Motherboard, CPU, RAM, Fans, etc...). It starts off with what to do with a fully functioning old computer before you open the case, and the precedes to suggest solutions for what to do with the individual components inside the case! Obviously there's no sense in repeating this list, so here it is:



Perhaps the obvious choice here if your monitor is still working is to set it up as a secondary monitor on your PC or you could use it as a TV with the help of a converter box, you may decide it's not worth it, especially if it's a particularly old monitor which by today's standards isn't very good. You may even choose to connect it to a PC and just use it as a digital photo frame. If you choose not to use it as a secondary monitor, maybe it's just not interesting or original enough for you, then keep on reading for some more ideas!

Fish Tank

Someone at Microsoft obviously predicted people using CRT monitors as fish tanks years ago, remember the aquarium screensaver on old Windows Machines? Well if you have an old CRT monitor then you can have real fish inside!

Homemade Projector

Ever wanted to watch a movie on a big screen at home or play video games on it, but didn't want to spend the money on an expensive projector or massive flat screen, well there's a solution...sort of, using an old working LCD monitor:

Check out this video as well:

Also on a related note, check out this segment from the Ben Heck Show, he has an LCD monitor with a dead backlight and finds alternate means of back lighting it:



Keyboard Circuit Sheet Lampshade

There has got to be a market for this! Fairly simple idea, that works to great effect. Fairly self explanatory, basically it's just taking apart your old keyboard and using the circuit sheet inside as a lampshade. For full details check out the guide:


Similar principle to the previous idea, using the circuit sheet, but this time to hold your money!

Before long you'll be wearing clothes made out of old keyboards! In fact...

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Keyboard Circuit Tie


You should check out this page for some inspiration, maybe come up with your own idea of what to do with your old keyboard:



Um....stick on cardboard ears and give it to your cat.

Mouse Pad

Mouse pads are in much less common usage than they used to be, but if you happen to have one but don't want to use it, there's loads of simple other tasks your mouse pad could perform. Just check this site out for some inspiration:


Any more?

There are so many ways you can make use of your old electronics and computer related gear, and as always if anyone knows of anymore ways, don't forget to share!

Happy Recycling!


sashascarlet on March 11, 2015:

Thank you for sharing valuable information. Nice hub. We live in a world of incredible innovation in consumer technology. We've all grown accustomed to the planned obsolescence of our electronics. IB-Remarketing helps local community projects with electronics recycling. If you are running any type of community event, we'd be glad to offer our services and provide a resource for people to dump their old computers, printers,servers and other such E-waste.

Elsie Hagley from New Zealand on November 01, 2012:

Nice hub, liked the fish tank idea. Thanks for sharing with us.

Eileen Goodall from Buckinghamshire, England on April 19, 2012:

Love the lampshade, I have a couple of old keyboard floating around in the shed somewhere, definitely time to dig them out - very creative and great for the planet - thanks for sharing, voted up and pinned.

jade on April 01, 2012:

good work great idears

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