** FILE ** A cable box is seen on top of a television in Philadelphia in this May 30, 2007 file photo. TV's big switch from analog to digital broadcasts is coming up in just one year, on Feb. 17, 2009. And while consumers may still be puzzling over whether they need converter boxes for older TVs, there's far less mystery over which business interests could stand to gain from the shift. (AP Photo/Matt Rourke, file)
The day is fast approaching when television goes digital. So does this mean that tube TV's will become obsolete? And if you do want to upgrade, what do we do with the old sets?
Tube televisions may become extinct someday, but not right now. Hold on to your TV's and install a converter box. There are several on the market so do your research before buying. Also the government is issuing a $40 coupon to help with the sting of having to buy this gadget, so be sure to apply for your coupon at www.dtv2009.gov.
If you decide you want to upgrade to a digital television, don't just dump your old sets. They are filled with steel, glass, plastic and precious metals, as well as hazardous materials so they'll need to be properly disposed of.
Contact the EPA or www.eiae.org for a list of reputable public or private e-cycling companies in your area.
Another option is to donate your working sets to local charities. However you decide, be sure you are dealing with a reputable company with a good history of recycling electronics.