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Ever Wonder What You Could Extract from a Laptop Before You Recycle it?

We’ve Dissected a Laptop to Show You.

Buy Computer Parts Devices Electronics from online shop


Before businesses recycle old laptops, here are some things that could be removed and salvaged for future use. Do You Know What’s on the Inside of Your Laptop? Take a Look from the Inside of a Laptop Sent for E-Recycling—and the Parts You Could Still Keep, or Get for Upgrading or Building Your Own. Laptops are created from an interesting collection of parts, many of which can be reused when the laptop itself has become outdated and is headed for the land of e-recycling. To keep hazardous materials out of landfills these devices must be properly dismantled and parts sorted for e-recycling.Depending on the age and life of device, some material may be worth holding on to as a backup for other machines?


Here is a look inside a laptop, and some of the parts that might be worth keeping—or buying to build your own.  


The Battery

Most laptop batteries are unique to one model and can be expensive to replace. If your battery still has some life to it, you may be able to reuse it within your organization.  If not, or you’re not sure if it’s good, don’t remove it, keep it on your device for recycling.


Power Supply

Since the power supply connector changes with almost every model, you won’t likely need an old power supply again once that laptop is broken or recycled, but someone else with the same model computer, may want it.  If the power supply is broken or not useable, you could keep the power cable.  It may fit into another power supply or device. If not, this accessory can be recycled, too.



Memory sticks (RAM) are usually easy to remove. A large variety of RAM exists with differences in storage capacity (gigabytes), clock speed (MHz), and shape (DDR2, DDR3).  Since memory technology changes infrequently, you might have other devices that can use the old laptop’s RAM.


Hard Drive

An old hard drive is removable and can be used to store non-essential data, for example movies or music. However, hard drives store important data, and often times corporations or organizations will want these units completely destroyed, or wiped clean of it’s data. If that’s the case organizations can remove these for destruction.


CMOS Battery

This little coin-shaped battery sits on the motherboard and powers low-level system functions while the laptop is turned off. These batteries are used on all computer motherboards and in many other devices and are worth keeping. Store it in a cool, dark, and dry place.



The display screen is one of the most valuable parts of your laptop, provided it’s still in a nice condition. It’s also one of the parts that can be tough to remove. Be extra careful when removing or shipping it, it’s extremely fragile.


CPU (Central Processing Unit)

In terms of value, your laptop’s CPU is up there with the display. It’s more of a tricky part to remove, generally you must remove the passive cooling system first that sits on top of it. Be careful when disassembling the cooling system and removing the CPU. Try not to touch the CPU’s pins, but instead hold the unit around the edges.


Other Parts

There are many more parts that you might be able to extract and play with, including the keyboard, touchpad, webcam, card reader, WIFI card, SD memory card reader or fingerprint reader.



Other parts will be left over that you cannot re-use or sell.  These may include the additional batteries, power supply, display, the motherboard, or the plastic casing of the entire laptop. Please don’t simply trash what’s left of your laptop. If you do disassemble a laptop and remove any of the above assets, whatever is left of it still contains valuable resources that can be recovered in a recycling process.


As a caution, don’t begin to take apart your laptop just because it no longer turns on.  Either you or someone more experienced in computer repair should first try to troubleshoot the problem.  It may turn out that your computer still has years of life left in it. And, when recycling, as with any electronic, if you start to remove the parts and pieces your dive is considered scrap instead of a whole unit.

Building Your Own

You can get laptop adaptors, Wi-Fi cards, docking stations, optical drives, keyboards, memory and other materials to replace or build your own system. These parts are usually available for a discounted from resellers and some electronic recyclers.


Southeastern Data has a store where you can find such items. You can get old, new and hard to find computer and electronic parts to build, replace or upgrade your computers and electronics, and even recycle your non-working and older parts. Each week you have access to different types of computers and electronics—parts and whole units—since their inventory constantly changes. A computer part or electronic that may not be there one week, could show up the next.


To save money, and find that computer parts and components such as: extra memory, Wi-Fi card and other material, it’s best to stop by their online store weekly. You can even buy full working laptops, networking gear and a wide range of electronics devices.


Here is some of the inventory I found available this week for Laptops in the Southeastern Data online store: