IT Recycling or Refurbishment. What to do with your business assets?

IT recycling or refurbishment: What to do with your business assets
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When our business devices begin to work slower than they used to, we have the difficult decisions about whether to opt for IT recycling or refurbishment for our redundant assets.

Many of us may want to upgrade to new models on the market in order to get the latest kit. However, this can reduce their lifetime value, costing you more money in the long-run and wasting a perfectly usable device.

With constant developments and advancements, it’s easy to be tempted by the newest tech. The promises of faster performance and broader capabilities may be tempting, but what will happen to your old assets? Choosing to retire and recycle your assets may seem the easiest option, but this can be costly.

To help reduce the costs of buying new, and increase the longevity of your devices, consider refurbishing them with an ITAD company. Sometimes internal elements can be replaced or fixed to improve performance at the fraction of the cost of replacing it.

But how do you know if an asset is worth refurbishing? And when is it time to say goodbye opt for IT recycling?

When is it time to replace your asset?

The first thing to consider before choosing to recycle or refurbish your asset is to examine its performance and capabilities. Of course, the needs of an asset will vary depending on the user’s requirements of it, so be sure to keep in mind what you want from the asset when assessing it.

Set of refurbishment tools

Key performance areas to consider:

Ability to run multiple processes 

If you are working on a tower PC or laptop, you may need it to run multiple processes at once. Checking emails at the same time as updating a database, or having multiple demanding programmes open at once can be straining on your computer’s CPU and cache size. Luckily, if you are working on a desktop PC, this can be upgraded by a professional, costing you much less than buying an entirely new unit.

If you have a laptop or mobile device, upgrading the CPU may be an impossible task. Most mobile devices and laptops often have the element soldered directly to the motherboard. This makes it difficult to detach, resulting in the entire motherboard needing to be replaced, which can be more costly than it’s worth.

Improving laptop processing capabilities is not a lost cause, however, as often the RAM can be upgraded, or external storage purchased. This helps to provide extra storage for data and decrease the demand on the CPU to improve performance.

Running speed

Sometimes, the speed of an asset is just too slow to work on and complete your required tasks. Running speed can be the culprit of many different problems, but often it is the age which causes an asset to slow down.

5 years is considered the average lifespan of a laptop, depending on its usage and grade of the internal components. Over time, laptops become clogged with data and gain general wear and tear. Sometimes, completing a factory reset can improve the running speed of the asset, but this can leave old data on the asset and does not ensure it will work like new.

PCs tend to last much longer than their portable counterparts. Desktop units allow for easier maintenance with the ability to swap out internal elements and remove dust, some work for up to 8 years. The running speed of a PC tends to depend on the CPU again, which is often easily replaced. As they are easily accessible, these assets are better to be furbished and reused rather than recycled.

Ability to update security

No matter what type of asset you are using, you need to be sure the data kept on it is secure.

One of the ways we often keep our business data safe on our assets is via the security software. This is included in the running programme of the device, such as IOS or Windows, and usually automatically updates without us thinking about it.

Some operating systems such as Windows 7 no longer having support provided for them, which leaves outdated devices at risk. When a device can no longer update to the newest version of their operating system, you should dispose of and responsibly send it to an ITAD for IT recycling.

The appearance of the asset

Often the appearance of the asset can determine its need to be replaced or refurbished. Elements like damaged or scratched screens and broken casings can be fixed by replacing that individual part of the asset. 

Broken screens are one of the most common damages which occur to mobile devices. Many of us may use this as an excuse to upgrade and purchase an entirely new device. In actuality, replacing the screen and applying a protective overlay would reduce costs and keep the asset usable for much longer.

Should you opt for IT recycling or refurbishment?

Ultimately, the decision to recycle or refurbish your assets depends on multiple factors. Each case will be individual to the devices and what they are used for.

If you are unsure what to do about your redundant assets, speak to your local ITAD. They can help identify the issues with your device and advise how to fix or recycle them to prevent elements from going to waste.

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