WHERE TO THROW AWAY BATTERIES? 3 OPTIONS
Have you ever wondered what to do when a battery in your household kicks the bucket? Are you aware of the most eco-friendly approach?
Considering the array of wireless gadgets in our homes, it’s crucial to be well-versed in handling dead batteries. The right course of action can differ based on their purpose.
Take, for instance, the contrast between the batteries inside your TV remote and the rechargeable ones powering your laptop or digital camera. Depending on your location, tossing them out could be both unsafe and against the law.
Dive into this post for a comprehensive breakdown of various household battery types and the proper disposal methods!
How to Get Rid of Household Batteries the Right Way
Dealing with Throwaway Batteries
Okay, so you’ve got these single-use batteries all over your place. They power up your TV remote, your flashlight, your kid’s toys, and those little gadgets. If these batteries can’t be juiced up again, they fall into this category.
Now, can you just chuck them in the trash?
Well, turns out you can toss these single-use batteries into your regular trash without much worry. The government says they’re made of regular metals that won’t cause any big problems.
Just note that this rule applies to most states, except for California where all battery types can’t be trashed. Back in the day, before 1996, these single-use batteries were a bit of a hazard due to the mercury they contained. There’s this one exception though – the button cell battery you find in watches – that’s a bit hazardous and needs special handling, kind of like rechargeable batteries.
But wait, can you recycle them?
Yeah, you can recycle these single-use batteries, but there’s usually a catch – a fee. You might have to pay a bit to recycle them, depending on where you live and all that jazz!
Recycling Single-Use Batteries: What to Do
So, you’re all up for being eco-friendly and recycling your single-use batteries, right? Here’s what you can do:
- Give your local solid waste district a buzz to see if they’ve got a collection program or some event coming up where you can drop off your used batteries.
- Take to the internet and search for recycling centers nearby that are cool with taking in your single-use batteries. Websites like Earth911’s Recycling Search can help you find the spots!
- Want something more chill? Look for mail-in recycling programs that are down to take your batteries. Some of these programs even sell you a container to stash your used batteries. When it’s full, you can just mail it back. Battery Solutions and Call2Recycle are a couple of options that let you mail in alkaline batteries for recycling. Easy peasy, right?
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How to Handle Used Rechargeable Batteries
Alright, let’s dive into what to do when you’ve got used rechargeable batteries on your hands. These babies are also pretty common around the house, hanging out in your cellphones, cameras, power tools, and beefier gadgets.
There are different types of batteries:
- Nickel metal hydride and nickel cadmium batteries chill in devices like cordless power tools, digital cameras, two-way radios, and cordless phones.
- Lithium-ion batteries take the stage in most portable gadgets like cell phones and laptops.
- Small sealed lead acid batteries are less common homestead residents, showing up in emergency gear, exit signs, security setups, mobility scooters, and special-purpose thingamajigs.
Now, here’s the lowdown on whether you can just throw them away:
Nope, you can’t simply chuck rechargeable batteries of any kind into your trash bin (or even the dumpster). In some places, it’s even illegal ’cause these batteries pack heavy metals that aren’t cool for the environment.
But don’t fret, recycling is the name of the game:
- You’re in luck – rechargeable batteries are meant to be recycled, usually without costing you a dime!
- Keep your eyes peeled at home improvement stores or office supply spots – they often have drop boxes set up by recycling organizations like Call2Recycle.
- Want more options? Earth911’s Recycling Search or a chat with your local waste wizards can guide you to other recycling spots.
Getting Your Batteries Ready for Recycling
Once you’ve figured out where to recycle your old batteries, take a little time to get them prepped for a smooth and safe recycling journey.
Prep Tips for Single-Use Batteries:
- To prevent any sneaky currents, slap on a piece of clear, non-conductive tape over the battery ends. Alternatively, you can individually bag each battery instead of taping.
- Store these little energy cells in a plastic or cardboard container that doesn’t know the first thing about conducting electricity – just in case a spark decides to join the party.
Prep Tips for Rechargeable Batteries:
- First off, free your batteries from their electronic homes. Dead laptops should get their own separate recycling treatment apart from their battery pals. Smaller devices like cell phones or iPods don’t need this solo treatment; they can be adopted by most battery recyclers as is.
- Give those terminals a little TLC by wrapping them up in some clear, non-conductive tape.
- If you’re sending your batteries on a mail-in adventure to a recycling facility, be sure to double-check if there are any extra safety steps you need to follow for shipping.
Remember, batteries and any other stuff that could potentially bring funky chemicals into the environment deserve a little extra love and attention when it’s time to say goodbye!