The Electrical and Electronic Equipment Act (ElektroG) contains a large number of requirements for handling electrical and electronic equipment. The most important requirements are summarized here.


1. Separate collection of old devices

Electrical and electronic equipment that has become waste is referred to as waste equipment. Owners of old devices must collect them separately from unsorted municipal waste. In particular, old devices do not belong in household waste, but in special collection and return systems..


2. Batteries and accumulators as well as lamps

Owners of old devices must usually separate old batteries and accumulators that are not enclosed by the old device, as well as lamps that can be removed from the old device without destroying them, before handing them in at a collection point. This does not apply if old devices are prepared for reuse with the participation of a public waste disposal authority.


3. Possibilities of returning old devices

Owners of old devices from private households can hand them in free of charge to the collection points of the public waste disposal authorities or to the take-back points set up by manufacturers or distributors within the meaning of the ElektroG.

Shops with a sales area of at least 400 m² for electrical and electronic equipment and those grocery stores with a total sales area of at least 800 m² that offer electrical and electronic equipment several times a year or permanently and make it available on the market are subject to the obligation to take back. This also applies to sales using long-distance means of communication if the storage and shipping areas for electrical and electronic equipment are at least 400 m² or the total storage and shipping areas are at least 800 m². In principle, distributors must ensure that they are taken back by providing suitable return options at a reasonable distance from the respective end user.


The possibility of returning an old device free of charge exists in the case of distributors who are obliged to take it back, among other things, if a new device of the same type that essentially fulfills the same functions is handed over to an end user. If a new device is delivered to a private household, the old device of the same type can also be handed over there for collection free of charge; This applies to sales using means of distance communication for devices in categories 1, 2 or 4 in accordance with Section 2 (1) ElektroG, namely “heat exchangers”, “display screen devices” or “large devices” (the latter with at least one external dimension of more than 50 centimeters). End users are asked about a corresponding return intention when concluding a purchase contract. There is also the option of returning old devices that are no larger than 25 centimeters in any external dimension to the distributors’ collection points free of charge, regardless of the purchase of a new device, limited to three old devices per type of device.


4. Privacy Notice

Old devices often contain sensitive personal data. This applies in particular to information and telecommunications technology devices such as computers and smartphones. In your own interest, please note that each end user is responsible for deleting the data on the old devices to be disposed of.


5. Meaning of the “crossed-out” wheeled bin symbol

The symbol of a crossed-out garbage can, which is regularly shown on electrical and electronic devices, indicates that the device in question must be collected separately from unsorted municipal waste at the end of its service life.

Manufacturer information according to § 18 paragraph 4 ElektroG (new)