Most people don't realize that in California, it's actually illegal to throw away your computer—too much toxic lead and other chemicals for the local landfill. And what about all those downloaded porn files and embarrassing e-mails from ex-boyfriends? Unless you happen to possess a high-grade memory eraser using classified military technology, you might want to think twice about leaving that old Mac or PC in the garbage bin. Fortunately for you, there's SoCal Computer Recyclers, which will be accepting used computers, VCRs, TVs and other electronic waste on Friday and Saturday in Huntington Beach. They do this every year, right after the busy Christmas shopping season. Not only will they recycle your computer free of charge—thus saving precious landfill space—but they'll also wipe your hard-drive clean and indemnify you against any liability from future recovery of sensitive data. Last year, So Cal Computer Recyclers took computers from nearly 1000 people and kept 112,000 pounds of waste from filling local landfills.
Computer Recycling at the Sports Complex, Huntington Beach Central Park, 18100 Goldenwest Ave., Huntington Beach, (310) 626-8180; www.socalrecyclers.com. Fri. & Sat., 9 a.m.-3 p.m.