In their heyday, VHS tapes were the most popular way to record videos and watch movies, but in just a couple of decades, the technology that once seemed so advanced has become obsolete and unpopular.
However, even though VHS cassettes can’t compete with the digital video technology available today, the fact remains that there are still millions upon millions of tapes in people’s closets, attics, or storage units, never to be used again.
And that raises the question – is there any way to recycle these tapes and ensure that they don’t end up polluting the earth for hundreds or even thousands of years?
Well, to answer that question, let’s look at some of the possible ways how you could recycle your old VHS tapes, as well as how to save their contents.
Here are the steps on how to recycle old VHS tapes;
1. Put Them Up for Sale
When you find an old box of VHS tapes in your garage or storage unit, they may not look like much.
Covered in dust and worn down, these tapes may not seem valuable, so most people just assume that no one would be interested in buying them and end up keeping them where they are or throwing them away.
However, in some instances, you may be surprised to find that some items in your collection have aged quite well and may actually be worth a significant amount of money.
Some collectible and rare old VHS tapes can be worth thousands of dollars – for instance, if you have an original tape of the 1978 movie Halloween, you could sell it for as much as around $13,000!
Obviously, these types of situations aren’t common, but you may find that you accidentally held on to an item that now has immense collectible value, so it’s always a good idea to check before throwing them out or giving them away.
Even if you only get a few bucks for the tapes it’s still better than nothing and that way you’d at least be ensuring that the tapes remain used and valued.
While tapes haven’t yet become widely accepted as a vintage format, there are collectors all over the world who value old VHS tapes and are willing to pay a premium for the right ones, so you should make sure to take advantage of this opportunity if your collection has valuable and rare items.
2. Send the Old VHS Tapes to a Specialized Recycling Company
Now, if you go through your VHS tape collection and don’t find anything of value, or if your collection mainly consists of home videos that are only valuable to you and your family, you will need to find other ways of recycling your collection besides selling it off.
Luckily, today there are plenty of recycling companies that accept old VHS tapes and know how to recycle them effectively so that they don’t end up in a landfill.
To get started, simply get on Google and type in “VHS tape recycling near me” and go through some of the main options, looking at the conditions that the company has, its policy, as well as the location so that you know that the option convenient for you.
Some companies will accept a certain amount of tapes for free, while others may charge a few for taking and processing them, but when you’re using a certified recycling company, you at least know that the tapes won’t become a burden for the environment.
What’s more, when using these types of services, you can sometimes even arrange for them to pick up the tapes from your home, saving you time and effort of having to drive the tapes to the recycling location yourself.
3. Repurpose Them
Sometimes, you may find that your collection of old tapes doesn’t have to go in the trash at all and that you may be able to repurpose your collection to serve you for many years to come.
Even if you don’t need the tapes for their contents, they are interesting and versatile objects that can be used in a variety of ways, depending on how much effort you are willing to put in and how creative you can be.
Today, many interior designers end up using vintage items to create exciting furniture or decorations, so you could use your tapes as a basis or a detail for anything from tables, shelves, clocks, or even wall decorations.
You can also repurpose the cassette tape into a storage box for smaller items such as jewelry or small accessories.
And if you’re feeling particularly creative, you can even use VHS tapes to create art, repurposing and remaking the tapes into something completely new and unique.
Point to Consider: Digitize Your Memories
When you’re trying to decide how to get rid of the old VHS tapes that are taking up space in your closet, you may be overlooking one of the most important considerations – how valuable is the content contained on the tapes, and can you allow yourself to get rid of them?
If the tapes contain old movies, they may not have too much sentimental value, as you can get the same movies in digital formats that provide much better quality.
However, if your tapes contain personal moments and home videos, they are irreplaceable, so while the format in which they are stored may be inconvenient and outdated. This is why you must make an effort to preserve the captured memories residing in your old VHS tapes.
Luckily, that process doesn’t have to be complicated – there are many tape conversion service providers that have the experience and the equipment necessary to convert your tapes into a digital format.
What’s more, when you use a convert VHS to digital service, the quality of the tapes can be restored and sometimes even improved, which will allow you to enjoy seeing your memories in better quality that will not decay over time.
Instead of having to deal with VHS tapes that take up space and continually decay year after year, you can have all of your videos stored in a digital format and ensure that the memories will be preserved for future generations to enjoy.