Battery Basics

Posted by on Apr 4, 2018 in Household Hazardous Waste, Learning Center, Recycling

Batteries! In our technology-rich society, it seems we rely on them more than ever. But, what do you do with them when they die? Disposal options for batteries are determined by the type of battery you want to get rid of. So, here’s what you should know…Batteris-on-End1

Rechargeable and button batteries should always be recycled. They contain materials like Lithium, Nickel Cadmium, and Mercury. Most rechargeable and button batteries will display a picture of a trash bin with a line through it indicating that they should not be thrown away. The chemicals they contain are considered hazardous and must be properly disposed of to avoid contamination of our water, air and soil. Thankfully,  rechargeable and button batteries are very easy to recycle–many local stores (Best Buy, Lowes, Target, Menards, RadioShack, etc.) will accept and recycle them. Here’s a list of local recycling options for these types of batteries.

Lead-acid batteries (automotive, lawn mower, etc.) are also very recyclable. As their name suggests, these batteries contain lead and acid; both of which are considered hazardous. Many auto service centers and auto parts stores (Big O Tires, Indy Tire, Interstate Batteries, NAPA Auto Parts, etc.) will accept these batteries for recycling (list).

Alkaline batteries (non-rechargeable) have been reformulated and are not considered hazardous.  These types of batteries are safe to be disposed of with your normal trash.  There is a small amount of recoverable metal in them that can be recycled where programs exist. There are a couple of nearby recycling options for alkaline batteries. Alkaline batteries are no longer accepted for recycling during the District’s Tox-Away Day events; any alkaline batteries brought to Tox-Away Day are landfilled.