Recycling Tips: Stop 'Wish-Cycling' CDs, DVDs, Video Tapes, Floppy Discs

Recycling Tips: Stop ‘Wish-Cycling’ CDs, DVDs, Video Tapes, Floppy Discs

You can turn old CDs into art.

  • Editor’s Note: This article is part of a series of stories written by Kane County Recycling Coordinator Jennifer Jarland and Kane County Environmental & Water Resources Intern Claire Eaton, a sophomore at University of Illinois Springfield. Got a question or idea for a recycling tip? Contact Jarland at 630-208-3841 or

As we move into a time when all of our music is electronic and CD players are becoming more obsolete, the massive libraries of music you’ve accumulated in disc seem to just be a pile of waste.

Media items such as CDs, DVDs, audio and video tapes, floppy discs, old record albums, and CD cases cannot be recycled through the county’s electronics recycling program because there is no market for media items — which are made of a combination of plastic and plastic film — and no one is recycling them into new products.

Nor can they be placed in your curbside recycling carts. While that’s a huge bummer, please refrain from wish-cycling these items.

However, there are a few other options in the area for recycling or upcycling electronic media items that are past their time!

Chicago Logistic Service takes CDs as well as VHS tapes without a fee. SCARCE in Glen Ellyn will take CDs as long as they are NOT in the case.

The CD Recycling Center of America has a mail-in program that is free except for the cost of shipping. There are also some online options, such as Green Disk, which can also provide destruction certificates for confidential information on the discs.

If you’re feeling crafty, there are many home DIY projects that can be done with your old CD’s or vinyl records. A warm solar curtain, a candle holder, and many more crafts are possible!

Learn more here.

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