My 2 Cents:  This is nice for all ya out there that have computer parts laying around the place…seems that you might be able to get some $$$ for sending in that junk :O)  If you have any stuff laying around it might be a good idea to check it out but you might want to make sure that you have cleaned the info off the drive before sending it in…

Some breath-of-spring news during this gray winter. An old Dell Inspiron is worth about $60 in HP’s new recycing program.

(Credit: Candace Lombardi)

Hewlett-Packard has decided to offer people in the U.S. free money in exchange for their old tech equipment, the company announced Tuesday.

HP has had a recycling program for years in which consumers could determine the value of their old tech equipment and then use that worth to get a credit toward a new HP or Compaq brand product.

This new recycling program does not require people to buy anything to get the money for their old tech equipment, although they are responsible for postage when mailing in the item.

HP calls its new program the HP Consumer Buyback and Planet Partners Recycling Program. The program offers money in exchange for any brand of PC, monitor, printer, digital camera, or smartphone HP determines still has some sort of value. It’s part of HP’s effort to recycle 2 billion pounds of electronic junk by 2010. As of now, the company has recycled over 1 billion pounds.

It’s like Antiques Roadshow for techies only you don’t have to go to the fair to find out what your attic junk is worth.

HP has a quote Web site for the buyback program where consumers can input the specs of their old tech equipment and receive a free instant quote.

If you find the quote worth your time, mail them your stuff (at your expense) and HP will mail you a check. Alternatively, you can opt for a "Premium Service" in which FedEx picks up the item or items at your house. The cost of that service is taken out of your final check from HP.

In testing out the system, I discovered HP offers examples from a drop-down menu, but will also accept items that have been modified and offers a place to put in the modified configuration and evaluate it. For example, I found that an old Dell Inspiron notebook with a 20 GB hard drive, 256 MB of RAM, a Pentium III M 1.0 GHZ processor, and loaded with Windows XP Professional is worth about $60.

If your tech junk is determined by the online tool to have no value, you’re out of luck on the money, but can still opt to mail it to HP for recycling if it’s an HP or Compaq brand product.

I took it one step further and tested out the value of the same old Dell laptop against HP’s U.S. trade-in recycling program, which is another option for consumers. On trade-in, the same old Dell Inspiron gets me an $86 credit.

Given this economy, I’d say it’s worth your time to look up your junk on HP’s site and make that trip to the post office.

HP offering free money for old tech equipment | Green Tech – CNET News