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Best Buy's 'trade-in calculator' will tell you how much cash you can make by selling your old electronics

Not every item has trade-in value, but it can be fun to click around and see what does.

Best Buy trade-in calculator

Recycling old or broken household electronics can be difficult — you can't just throw your cracked iPhone in the recycling bin. But luckily for you — and for anyone who contributes to the 82% of e-waste that ends up in the trash — Best Buy is making it both easy and profitable to do the right thing.

What is the Best Buy Trade-In Calculator?

A new feature on the electronics retailer's website, the Best Buy Trade-In Calculator, lets you click around to see how much money in store credit Best Buy will give you for your old phone, computer, and more.

Let's say you have an old iPhone 12 in good condition with no cracks. That will net you $220 in Best Buy gift cards. The same product with a cracked screen, but still in working order, will get you $55. A Series 4 Apple Watch in fair condition will get you $12.25. 

Not every item has trade-in value, but it can be fun to click around and see what does.

Why is the Best Buy Trade-In Calculator so helpful?

Computers, phones, and other electronics cannot be recycled simply. When they become trash (often intentionally, due to planned obsolescence practices that are designed to make consumers spend more) they have to be recycled by specialized companies dedicated to the task.

Even though e-waste is the world's fastest-growing waste stream, less than 18% of it gets recycled. And more and more of it is produced every day as the demand for electronics grows higher.

"What we saw during the pandemic was perhaps a one-computer family soon became a one-computer-per-human family, because everybody was educating from home, connecting from home, entertaining from home," e-waste recycling nonprofit CEO Amanda LaGrange told The Cool Down. "Very few people wake up in the morning, excited to recycle their electronics each day. But if we can societally say that this is something important that we do, and we don't just have a drawer full of phones, we'll start to really move the dial." 

Hopefully, the Best Buy Trade-In program can help bring those numbers a bit, as diverting e-waste from landfills is hugely important for building a sustainable future.

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