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12 Earth Day Electronics Recycling Projects for DIY Beginners

Earth Day is just around the corner, so isn’t it high time you planned a DIY project to support environmental protection and raise conservation awareness? This year, why not handle some earth-friendly crafts to honor this special day?

If you already have plenty of old electronics in your house that you no longer use, you only need some creativity to make something awesome that’s functional as well.

Read on for some beginner-friendly DIY electronics recycling ideas that’ll help you enjoy extra mileage out of your old devices.

1. Old Blender Into a Lamp

If you have a dead blender, why not give it an honorable afterlife and turn it into a stunning lamp? You’ll need to re-wire the blender such that the original switch controls the new lights.

You can choose to paint or leave the blender jar in its original condition. The latter means a glossy, transparent glass. A frosted look is a great choice as it helps diffuse the light to eliminate bright and harsh lighting.

2. Computer Parts Into Jewelry

The final destination for dead computer parts doesn’t have to the scrapheap. Breathe new life into dead computer hardware with cool, unique jewelry made from resistors, wires, circuit boards, and more. From rings and necklaces full of resistors to bracelets made from circuit boards, the options are limitless.

3. Recycled Materials Into a Robotic Arm

Everyone is lazy to some degree. Wouldn’t it be great to have a tool or gadget that can make life easier?

This robotic arm won’t fully serve as your own private butler, but it’ll still make things simpler for you—and it’ll be really fun. It’s also affordable because you can use recyclable items such as screws, strings, wires, and bolts.

If you have extra waste materials remaining, a DIY air conditioner project will be worth your time as well.

4. Old Computer Into an Aquarium

If you were thinking about buying an aquarium to add an exclusive touch to your home, don’t rush out and spend your cash—because you might already have one sitting around.

You only need to spend some time transforming an old computer into a home for fish. In no time, you’ll have a mind-blowing aquarium that’ll fascinate everyone who comes over.

5. Old Computer Into a Home Theater

Your old workhorse may not be the best choice to keep up with your current daily needs, but it can be an excellent dedicated video hub. Your old computer may have a DVD player, and still run a web browser that you can use to stream media from YouTube, Hulu, and Netflix, among other sources.

Before you invest in other equipment for this project, it’s advisable to test your old Mac or PC to ensure it can handle the type of video playback of your choice. Some worthy upgrades for your old machine are extra RAM and a faster video card.

6. Old Computer Into a Jukebox

If your old PC isn’t quite reliable at handling video playback, you can still use it a dedicated audio server. The conversion can be as little or much as you want, from a simple listening station to a full-fledged jukebox.

Based on what’s available and your aspirations, adding USB external drives will not only expand the storage but also enable steaming of your music collection. On the other hand, you can use the Mac or PC as a satellite station that brings music from your local network into a different room in the house.

7. Old Computer Into a Pet Bed

Here’s some nostalgia for you: Do you remember the colored iMac computers that came in green, red, orange, and blue? Well, you can repurpose those iconic computers into cool pet beds for cats and small dogs.

The screen and inside components of the computer are replaced with removable, washable cushion that creates a comfy spot for small animals.

8. Old iPod Into a Portable Drive

Maybe you upgraded to the latest iPhone or iPod model, but your old iPod could still serve as an extra backup drive. Some of the old iPods have over 80GB of hard drive space that you could put into better use.

Not just Apple-branded devices, other media players from Samsung, Creative, and Archos, among other companies also show up as removable drives once connected to a computer. Use the media player as an external drive by dragging and dropping files to your PC.

9. Old Webcam Into a Home Security System

Old webcams can be reused to give you some peace of mind at home or when you’re away. Essentially, webcams will serve that purpose when paired with the right software, but that depends on your budget and platform.

You can’t go wrong by spending extra bucks on software with features like emailing images when the motion detection is triggered. Some of the most widely-used software that are reliable and effective are iSpy, Yawcam, and SecuritySpy.

10. Old Phone Into a Security Camera

You don’t have to break the bank to set up a security system for your home. If you have an old smartphone, it’s time to put it to good use.

To start off, choose a security-camera app. Most apps offer features such as cloud streaming, local streaming, storing footage remotely, recording, and motion detection.

Once all is set up, you’ll be able to control your security camera remotely and monitor your home, straight from your old phone.

11. Old CDs Into Art

Do you still have some old CDs gathering dust in your room and you don’t know how to use them? Here is a great way to turn them into eye-catching pieces of art.

It’s a simple project that you can finish in a day. Some of the cool art pieces you can create are mirror frames, curtain decorations, and wall art.

12. Old TV Into Storage

You may be tempted to toss your old TV, but this enchanting project idea will inspire you to change your mind.

Your upcycled TV can be used to showcase your favorite items, or store books. Adding some shelves to it will make it more functional and interesting.

Related: Fun and Easy DIY TV Stands You Can Build

Turn Your Old Electronics Into Art

Pretty much any non-functional piece of electronics can become a fun art project. Depending on the amount of time you have and resources you want to use, you can make some funky knick-knack pieces of art.

With all the electronics recycling projects we’ve discussed, there’s no doubt that you’ll find an interesting one to tackle this Earth Day.

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