How ERI Recycles LCD & Plasma TVs

Plasma and LCD TVs make up a large share of the current television marketplace — approximately 34 million units sold in 2011, according to the EPA — and many consumers are now buying their second or third flat-screen television and recycling their first-generation unit.

LCD and plasma TV units could potentially contain beryllium, cadmium, lead, mercury and PCBs, each of which could possibly pose human health risks. Careful, responsible dismantling is paramount to ensure safety.

How ERI recycles plasma / LCD monitors and TVs

Like most electronics, ERI first checks monitors and TVs to see if they can be refurbished and reused. Those that are in good working condition are then resold.

The remaining nonfunctional TVs and monitors are then recycled. ERI recycles LCD TVs by dismantling piece by piece, starting with the removal of the plastic backing shell. Then, the digital board, A-board, aluminum or steel frame, screen, PET plastic and fluorescent tubes are removed.

Plasma screens follow the same dismantling process with the exception of the fluorescent lamp removal.



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These days, consumers are updating their TVs more frequently — 100% of flat-screen televisions have entered end-of-life management by nine years. (source: EPA)

362 million pounds of televisions were recycled in 2010. (source: EPA)

Americans bought 36.6 million TVs in 2013. (source: Electronics Takeback Coalition)