Amazon Kindle on a pile of books
dean bertoncelj / Shutterstock.com

Kindles have an incredible lifespan. My six-year-old Paperwhite is still going strong. You’re pretty likely to still have a working Kindle if you upgrade to a newer model, so here’s what you need to do before selling or giving away your old one.

Deregister It From Your Account

Your Kindle is connected seamlessly to your Amazon account. You almost never need to enter your password or confirm your credit card details to buy a book. This is great when you’re the only person using your Kindle, but if you’re planning to give it to someone else, you don’t want them to have free reign on your bank account.

On the Kindle, go to Menu > Settings.

Go to Menu > Settings

Next, head to My Account > Deregister Device.

Go to My Account > Deregister Device

In the confirmation window that pops up, tap “Deregister” again and the Kindle will be disconnected from your Amazon account.

Select the "Deregister" button

Now it’s ready for someone else to set up.

Reset the Kindle (Optional)

This step is technically optional, but it’s a good idea to reset your Kindle to its factory settings before selling it or giving it away. The new owner will be able to start from a totally blank slate.

Go to Menu > Settings.

Go to Menu > Settings

On the Settings page, tap the Menu button again, and then select the “Reset” option.

Go to Menu > Reset

Advertisement

In the confirmation window, tap “Yes” and the Kindle will take a few minutes to restart and reset. Once it’s finished, the Kindle will be like it was on the day you got it.

Tap "Yes" from the pop-up menu

Clean the Kindle

Let’s be honest, people are filthy, filthy creatures. Any personal device you’ve had for more than a few weeks is smothered in bacteria. Something like a Kindle that you’ve had for years and used everywhere in your house is practically a petri dish. Before giving away or selling your Kindle, do the decent thing and give it a good cleaning.

Since Kindles are almost all screen, grab some screen cleaning wipes and give your Kindle a good wipe down. Don’t use household cleaning products or rubbing alcohol, as they could damage the device. It’s much the same process as cleaning your phone (which you should also be doing).

RELATED: How (and Why) You Should Be Cleaning Your Phone and Other Electronics

Selling or Giving Away Your Kindle

With your Kindle clean on the inside and out, it’s time to get it in the hands of another loving owner. There are lots of options for where you can sell your Kindle, but one of the old reliables like Craigslist, Amazon, eBay, or Swappa is going to give you the best results.

RELATED: Where Should I Sell My Stuff? eBay vs. Craigslist vs. Amazon

Unfortunately, since Kindles are pretty cheap to begin with, you probably aren’t going to get a lot of money for an older, used model. A brand new Kindle Paperwhite retails for $119.99 on Amazon. Someone is listing one for $105 on Swappa but the most recent sale was for $85. Used, older, or cheaper Kindles are going to sell for less.

List the kindle for sale

Advertisement

Personally, I prefer to hand my old Kindles on to someone I know who loves to read, but doesn’t have one yet. Books have always been my favorite gifts and a Kindle is the closest digital equivalent.

If you’re passing your Kindle on to a family member, you should set up Amazon Household. This way you both keep your own Amazon accounts but you’re able to share any Kindle purchases either of you make. There are also children’s profiles available, so you can control what your kids are able to read; you don’t want them left with unfettered access to Amazon’s copious amount of bad literotica.

RELATED: How to Set Up Amazon Household and Share Prime Benefits, Purchased Content, and More


Kindles, since they’re so simple, can easily last for years. Most people I know end upgrading their Kindle before it breaks just to get the latest features. This makes them perfect for giving away or selling.

The Best eReaders of 2021 for Reading Anytime, Anywhere

Best eReader Overall
Kindle Paperwhite (8GB)
   Check Price   
Best Budget eReader
Certified Refurbished Kindle
   Check Price   
Best Kindle eReader
Kindle Oasis
   Check Price   
Best eReader for Kids
Kindle Kids Edition
   Check Price   
Best waterproof eReader
Kindle Oasis
   Check Price   
Best eReader with color display
PocketBook InkPad Color
   Check Price   
Best Reading Tablet
iPad Mini
   Check Price   
Best Non-Kindle eReader
Kobo Libra H2O
   Check Price   
Harry Guinness Harry Guinness
Harry Guinness is a photography expert and writer with nearly a decade of experience. His work has been published in newspapers like The New York Times and on a variety of other websites, from Lifehacker to Popular Science and Medium's OneZero.
Read Full Bio »

The above article may contain affiliate links, which help support How-To Geek.