Organising Small Electricals


Welcome to Week 35 of Tidy 2020. I have to say that I am rather glad that we have finished outdoors because here in Aberdeenshire it is feeling distinctly Autumnal! There is a definite chill in the air and the ponies are starting to grow their winter coats in preparation for a Scottish winter. So back inside this week to start a new category of Small Electricals.

By small electricals I mean everything smaller than a dishwasher that has an electrical component to it. Which includes, but is not limited to, old phones – both mobile and static, old laptops and computers, tape/disc players, television sets, broadband units (you’d be amazed at how many of these I find stashed away in houses!), lamps, clocks, microwaves, juicers, and anything else that is powered by electricity or batteries and that we haven’t already covered.

As you can see, this is quite a big category! Like last week with the outdoor toys, I don’t expect you to bring everything into the same place, but I do expect you to make a note of them and where they are so that you can see how many you actually have and see if that is the amount that you truly need. As usual, everyone’s amount will be different – we have only one TV in the house for example, but we have 4 iPads (one each for the kids). Do ask yourself, in this ever-changing technological world that we live in, if you have the right number for you.

Remember to make positive choices to keep things rather than hanging on to things “just because”. We no longer have a landline (I just used to get spam calls on them) or broadband (the speed in rural Aberdeenshire is shockingly low), but we do have 2 4G units – one for the house and one for my office. Without these 4G units, neither my husband or I would be able to work from home. The one in the house is a bit beefier and is unlimited as my kids use it as well, whilst the one in my office has a lower limit and is quite wee. I can take it around with me though! Fully charged, I can use it as a mobile hotspot anywhere where there is signal, and I can even take it overseas.

As an aside, although it may have been cheaper to roll all the networks in to one, we have chosen to have them on different networks and we’ve done this as a bit planning. Some days a network goes down, and if we’re all on that network, then we’re stuffed. However, being on different networks means that if one goes down, the other is usually still available.

It is rare to find a donation point for old electricals (most charity shops won’t take them), but it is often possible to sell them. Most dumps have a small electrical recycling area and places like Apple will take your old phones and laptops. Do make sure that you wipe your data from them though and reset the factory settings – you don’t want your digital information ending up in the wrong hands!