How to Recycle Computer Monitors

If you’re looking to recycle a cathode ray tube (CRT) monitor, which have been mostly phased out of the sales market at this point, it contains four to eight pounds of lead. If you have a liquid-crystal display (LCD) screen, it’s likely being backlit by small fluorescent bulbs containing mercury. Both are toxic metals that you want to keep inside the monitor.

This means it’s extra important to keep these monitors out of landfills but also treat them with care when recycling. Here are a few steps to take when preparing your monitor for recycling:

  1. Unplug the DVI, HDMI or VGA cable from your monitor (as well as the CPU) to lighten the load and prevent tripping (for VGA, you’ll need to unscrew the ends). If the power cord can be removed, unplug that as well.
  2. Use a dolly or a rolling chair to transport the monitor to your car. CRT monitors can be quite heavy and you don’t want to risk dropping them.
  3. Place a towel or blanket down in the car and put the monitor face down on top. This will ensure that nothing breaks if you hit any potholes on the drive.

Find a drop-off location for computer monitors near you using the Recycling Locator.

Find Recycling Guides for Other Materials

Frequent Computer Monitor Recycling Questions

Additional Reading