Here’s What to Do With a Broken Laptop

Today’s best laptops are significant investments. With that, we all do our very best to look after them. However, there comes a time in every laptop’s life when things ultimately take a turn for the worse. A catastrophic hardware failure is typically the final nail in the coffin of any laptop. Elsewhere, accidental damage can send countless laptops to the trash.
Of course, that’s among the worst things anyone can do with a broken laptop. Throwing it in the garbage is never a good idea. However, even a badly damaged computer still has prospects. Accordingly, here are four options for what to do with a broken laptop instead of sending it to the trash.

Repair It

All too often, laptop owners dismiss the option of repairing a device that’s failed or sustained damage. Of course, if an upgrade is overdue anyway, it may feel like a blessing in disguise. Still, completely discounting the mere notion of repairing a broken laptop is never advisable.
In many cases, the cost to repair a broken laptop may prove expensive. If that’s true, it’s probably time to look at other options. However, simple repairs are surprisingly affordable, so getting a quote at the very least is always a good idea.
Even a cheaply repaired laptop can have a year or more of life left in it. And while it may never live back up to its original performance figures, all is not lost. If a repair is possible, an older, previously broken laptop can be handed down to a grateful younger family member, for example.

Trade It In

Depending on the exact condition of a broken laptop, there’s every possibility that it could be traded in against a new device. Brands like Apple and Lenovo, plus retailers including Best Buy and Walmart, all offer one or more trade-in options.
The condition of a laptop will affect its trade-in value, that goes without saying. Unfortunately, trade-in program providers can also turn down any device they aren’t interested in. For instance, Apple almost certainly won’t allow a laptop with any significant cosmetic damage to be traded in for credit.
That said, other companies are often more forgiving. If the plan all along has been to upgrade to a newer model from the same manufacturer, trading in an older piece of equipment is almost always worth exploring.

Sell It

Contrary to popular belief, there’s a substantial market for damaged laptops, especially MacBooks and other high-end machines. Services like Cult of Mac’s Apple gear buyback program specialize in buying used laptops, even if they’re broken. When it comes to MacBooks in particular, Cult of Mac promises more for broken devices than Apple itself, as well as Walmart, Best Buy, and similar services such as Gazelle.
Either way, don’t expect a fortune, especially if a laptop is in particularly poor shape. If the only other option is to otherwise dispose of it, though, remember that something is better than nothing.
Selling a previously broken laptop after a successful repair is another option, especially if a replacement has already been purchased. With some new life breathed back into it, a once faulty laptop repaired to a good standard can represent a great buy for someone looking for a bargain.
Whether sold locally or online, just make sure to mark it as repaired. Sold as seen, it could net you $100 or more – a tidy sum of money, all things considered!

Recycle It

Even with most other avenues explored and exhausted, there’s never any excuse for throwing a laptop in the trash. Just about all of them can be recycled to some degree. That’s because many include components made from increasingly precious or otherwise in-demand materials, like so-called rare earth metals.
Recycling a device, then, can preserve these metals. By that token, it prevents the need to produce new materials from scratch — something that’s never good for the environment.
Apple and Best Buy both offer popular recycling programs. In addition, a new crop of companies wholly dedicated to recycling old tech has also appeared more recently.
Recycling is a great way to dispose of broken or damaged laptops and other devices while also helping to protect the environment.

Protect Your Laptop With an Extended Warranty

You can avoid retiring your laptop early by purchasing an extended laptop warranty. While no laptop will last forever, comprehensive warranties are among the best ways of prolonging laptops by keeping them serviceable for longer.
Coverage with Upsie protects against manufacturer defects and a plethora of other faults, including screen, power, motherboard, RAM, and Wi-Fi failures. In addition, Upsie covers accidental damage as well. So, even if you drop your laptop or spill liquid across the keyboard, for example, Upsie will arrange repairs and get it back in working order.
Where a laptop can’t be repaired, Upsie will replace it instead, responsibly disposing of the faulty or damaged item in the process.

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* This article is over 6 months old and may or may not be updated.