Every December we come up with resolutions that are supposed to make us better people. Some people resolve to get more exercise or lose weight. Others resolve to be kinder. There is no shortage of ideas for New Year's resolutions. But how about choosing some of your 2022 resolutions based on how you use home electronics?
Home electronics have literally revolutionized the way we live. But they are not all sunshine and roses. Everything from laptop computers to mobile phones present challenges. How about we resolve to face those challenges in such a way as to make the world a better place?
To that end, here are five New Year's resolutions involving home electronics:
1. Stop Using Alkaline Batteries
Our battery-powered home electronics run the gamut from portable music players to electric toothbrushes. Our homes are filled with battery-powered toys, flashlights, hand tools, and on and on. Let's say we all agree to stop using alkaline batteries in those devices. Every alkaline battery we don't use is one that doesn't end up in a landfill.
Today's rechargeable batteries, especially when they are lithium-ion, offer equal or better performance than disposable cells. And because a good USB rechargeable battery can be charged a thousand times or more, a single lithium-ion unit replaces a ton of alkalines.
2. Recycle Old Batteries
As long as we are talking about batteries, consider recycling those that have reached end-of-life. All your spent rechargeable batteries can be recycled just by dropping them off at a participating recycling center. And guess what? Retailers all over the country willingly accept batteries. You can find a drop-off location by visiting the call2recycle website.
3. Recycle Old Electronics
Speaking of recycling, let's not stop at lithium-ion, NiCad, and NiMH batteries. We could all do a better job of recycling our old electronics rather than throwing them in the trash can. Granted, it is a little bit more difficult in some parts of the country. Yet most municipalities conduct recycling drives once or twice a year. Some do it every month.
Please consider recycling your old TVs, computers, computer peripherals, cell phones, etc. There are some pretty valuable components in those electronics that can be harvested and recycled. What cannot be recycled can be disposed of in an environmentally responsible way.
4. Don't Leave Them Running
Allowing your electronic devices to continue running even when you're not using them only wastes electricity. The more electricity we have to produce, the more stress we put on the environment. So let's all agree to turn off our devices when they aren't being used. In addition to not wasting electricity, we will spend less on monthly utility bills.
5. Reduce Vampire Power Consumption
Did you know that some electronic devices continue drawing power even when they are off? Take a look around your house. Any devices with a glowing power light are consuming electricity. This power is often called 'vampire power'. At any rate, it is unnecessary.
Device makers sometimes design their products to continually draw power in order to take advantage of digital memory. While digital memory is convenient, it's really not necessary. For example, your coffee maker doesn't have to display the date and time. Unplug it before you leave for work. Make the effort to eliminate vampire power consumption and you may be surprised by how much you save on your energy bills.
Home electronics have changed the way we live. However, they do generate waste. For the coming year, we encourage you to resolve to reduce that waste by employing the five tips from this post. Happy new year!