What to do with a terminal cell phone?

Inspired by the Dead Cell Phone poll…

What should I do with my terminal phone? Mrs. L.A. dropped it in the cat’s water dish. I thought it was going to be OK, but it started behaving as if it were possessed. First, when I plugged it in to charge, it would keep giving the ‘Thank you for plugging me in. I’m charging now’ tones. Then it started turning the volume all the way down, turned on the camera, and kept taking pictures. I don’t know how many photos of the ceiling are on it! And it could not be turned off, except by removing the battery. Clearly, it’s mostly dead.

It’s a cheap LG Tribute, and I think I paid $50 for it when it was new years ago. Since it has been replaced with an iPhone, I’m not going to use it for anything. But it seems a shame to just toss it in the trash. What do I do with it? Are there recycling places? (Not that I want to go out of my way.)

It’s probably illegal to just toss it in the trash (?) Maybe the retailer where you got it, or some nearby store, has an e-waste bin so you do not have to go out of your way to take it to a big recycling center?

I can’t imagine it’s illegal to throw it away, I’ve thrown away several. You can recycle it at Best Buy, just drop it off.

Is there a local charity that takes them? We have a Veterans Thrift Store that takes old cell phones, dead or alive, and does whatever they do with them to help vets in need. We also have the Reuseum, they take in any and all old tech/mech items for recycle reuse. Popular place for the electronics and robotics students at the local college to shop for parts

If you do recycle it or donate it to a charitable organization, be sure to remove the SD card (if it has one) and also do a factory reset to clear out any of your personal info.

There’s probably a Value Village or Goodwill near you. They’ll take dead electronics and send them to a recycler for you.

Thanks for the reminder, Shoeless.

I wanted to see who made an app on the Tribute so I could get it for the iPhone. The Tribute seemed to be operating normally. Then it turned the volume down, which is what it did before it started taking pictures. I did the factory reset.

Now there are very few icons on the screen (before, it was loaded up with a whole bunch of stuff I never used). My Contacts is empty. So… was the data on the SIM card erased? Seems like it.

I have the phone turned on to see what happens. If it no longer seems faulty, I think I’ve heard that there are charities that will give it to a person who needs it.

After behaving all night, the camera turned on. So recycling it is.