Wear and tear on your glasses is going to happen after wearing them for a while. They may have loose hinges, bent arms, or missing nose pads. Your eye doctor might be able to repair your glasses for you or tell you where to get them fixed. If you know how to, you can attempt to repair them yourself. You’ll need certain tools to work with the little hinges and screws. However, it’s a skill that’s easy to learn.
While some reuse eyeglass programs do have their flaws, some initiatives are doing good work to get the most out of used eyeglasses. New Eyes takes old glasses in the US, recycles and distributes them to vision-impaired individuals who can’t afford their own eyeglasses. The program distributes over 70% of their donations. Lions Club also has a reuse initiative in countries including South Africa, Australia, Canada, Spain, and Italy. This organization is said to recycle around 35% of all donations. If you’re in Australia, you can drop off your old glasses to Specsavers stores where they will be passed on for reuse.
Glasses are made up of many different materials. The lenses are typically made from plastic and the frames might be made from plastic, aluminum, steel, or gold. This makes it hard to recycle them. That said, some organizations have programs that can break down glasses and recycle the bare materials.
If your frames are made from aluminum, they can be recycled substantially. In order to recycle them, you’ll have to break apart your glasses into bare materials. You might be able to throw the aluminum part in with your curbside recycling if it is put in a bigger aluminum container.
Imagine if we all kept our glasses out of a landfill. Now, that’s a vision!