Search Help:

Recycling Electrical or Electronic Equipment (WEEE)

In this page you can find all the information you need about recycling electrical or electronic equipment.

European customers outside of the UK, please click here.

All Electronic and Electrical Equipment (EEE) placed onto the market from January 2, 2007 must be marked with this symbol to indicate that it is covered by the WEEE Directive, the provisions of which require that producers or manufacturers of EEE become liable to pay for take-back treatment and recycling of end of life equipment (WEEE):


If you purchased your product from a Marketplace Seller, please contact that Seller to know more about the compliance solution they have in place for disposing of your old electronic equipment.

What is the WEEE Directive?

The production of electrical and electronic equipment is one of the fastest growing domains of manufacturing in the western world, and with broad consumer take-up of products in this area, there is also a mounting issue of waste. In June 2000, the European Commission put forward proposals to address this issue, and in December 2002, these were passed as the EU Waste Electronic and Electrical Equipment (WEEE) Directive. Such proposals were updated in the WEEE Directive 2012/19/EU.

For the UK, the WEEE Regulations were laid before Parliament on December 12, 2006. The main requirements and obligations on producers and distributors of Electronic and Electrical Equipment (EEE) came into effect from July 1, 2007.

The major provisions of the WEEE Directive are:

  • All manufacturers (or anyone else selling a product on the market in the EU) are liable to pay for take-back, treatment and recycling of end-of-life equipment.
  • Improve re-use/recycling of WEEE.
  • Ensure the separate collection of WEEE.
  • Inform the public about their role in dealing with WEEE.

What are Amazon.co.uk's obligations according to the WEEE Directive?

As a distributor of EEE Amazon.co.uk, must facilitate the take-back of household WEEE from UK consumers and has decided to fulfil its obligations in this area by joining the Government approved "Distributor Take-Back scheme" (DTS) set up by Valpak.

By joining the Valpak scheme Amazon.co.uk is contributing to the establishment of a network of Designated Collection Facilities (DCF) where consumers may dispose of their WEEE free of charge for recycling and treatment in an ecologically sound manner.

In this way Amazon.co.uk can ensure that WEEE is disposed of by customers in a way that optimizes its re-use and recycling. The recycling and treatment of WEEE itself is part of the producer's obligation under the WEEE Directive. As a consequence of our membership of the Valpak scheme Amazon.co.uk will not accept returns of household WEEE itself and cannot accept WEEE returns for recycling, neither do we make arrangements for its collection.

How does Amazon.co.uk ensure safe disposal of my WEEE?

Amazon.co.uk has decided to join the Distributor Take-Back scheme (DTS) commissioned by the British Retail Consortium. This scheme is run by Valpak who are officially approved by the Government. As part of this scheme we ask that you take your old piece of equipment to a designated collection facility (DCF) run by Valpak in your area. An online search facility to help you identify a DCF near you is available on the following website:

www.recycle-more.co.uk.

Are there any other ways of disposing of my old electronic equipment?

If your old piece of electronic equipment is still in a good working condition or could be repaired for further use, please consider donating it to a charitable organisation or by giving it to someone else in need. By extending the lifetime of your old equipment you are also contributing to the efficient use of resources and avoiding additional waste.

Please note that from July 1, 2007, it'll be possible for you to dispose of your WEEE and ensure that it is recycled.

EEE may contain hazardous substances, which if exposed, may have a serious detrimental effect on the environment and human health. That's why all WEEE that you volunteer for recycling will be specifically collected and treated by designated local waste facility centres and by licensed WEEE compliance schemes. By ensuring that you dispose of your old electrical and electronic equipment according to the new WEEE legislation, you are helping to preserve our natural resources and protect human health.

Which products fall under the legislation and how do I recognise them?

The consumer will need to bring their used equipment to a waste facility centre, or to a distributor when buying new equipment, or to charity.

The WEEE directive divides Electronic and Electrical Equipment into ten categories:

  • Category 1 - Large household appliances (fridges, cookers, microwaves, washing machines, etc.)
  • Category 2 - Small household appliances (vacuum cleaners, clocks, toasters, etc.)
  • Category 3 - IT and Telecommunications equipment (PCs, mainframes, printers, copiers, phones, etc.)
  • Category 4 - Consumer equipment (radios, hi-fi, musical instruments, videos, camcorders, etc.)
  • Category 5 - Lighting equipment (fluorescent tubes and holders, sodium lamps, etc.)
  • Category 6 - Electrical and electronic tools (drills, sewing machines, electric lawnmowers, etc.)
  • Category 7 - Toys, leisure and sports equipment (electric trains, games consoles, exercise machines, etc.)
  • Category 8 - Medical devices (analysers, dialysis machines, medical freezers, etc.)
  • Category 9 - Monitoring and control equipment (smoke detectors, thermostats, scales, etc.)
  • Category 10 - Automatic dispensers (hot drinks machines, sweet and chocolate bar dispensers, cash machines, etc.)

Glossary

  • DCF (Designated Collection Facility): A public amenity site licensed to collect, separate and recycle WEEE for collection by a licensed producer compliance scheme.
  • DTS (Distributor Take-back Scheme): The WEEE compliance scheme for retailers, approved by the Department for Trade and Industry
  • EEE: Electronic and Electrical Equipment
  • WEEE (Waste Electronic and Electrical Equipment): All end-of-life equipment falling under the WEEE Directive (for the specific categories see section 6, above).

Customer information on WEEE