How to Donate Electrical Goods to Charity

Updated November 21, 2016

If you have unwanted electronics and electrical goods, don't throw them in a landfill. Donate them to a good cause, instead. Numerous non-profit and charities--probably in your area--would be happy to resell the items to benefit their mission and help those in need. In some cases, high-end electronics such as computers don't even need to be in working condition; many agencies can repair the goods for resale or properly recycle the parts.

Find a non-profit or charity you would like to benefit with your donations. Many thrift stores accept donations to resell for a good cause. Goodwill, for example, is a thrift store with thousands of locations in the United States and Canada. Each branch's sales help fund employment and training programs for people of all backgrounds. Check for thrift store listings or call United Way's 211, a free telephone service that connects people to public-service organisations (including those that accept donations) in their community.

Test the battery-operated items and electrical equipment you wish to donate. Smaller electronic items, such as CD players, should be in working condition. However, broken computers and their accessories (such as scanners or monitors) will be accepted by some non-profit. Goodwill, for example, can refurbish the equipment or properly recycle it.

Drop off your donation at the charity of your choice. Goodwill and other agencies ask that donors do not place their goods outside the store, but instead in designated donation bins.

Calculate and file the estimated financial contribution of your donation. Federal law permits donors the ability to claim tax deductions for many of the items given to charity. A charity worker will give you a receipt as proof of your donations, which you can use for the tax write-off.


When donating a computer, be sure to protect your identity during the process. Goodwill recommends removing all data from the hard drive, except the operating system, before the donation.

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