How Should You Properly Dispose of Batteries?

Most all batteries will eventually wear out and leave you wondering, “what now?” Batteries are jam-packed with all kinds of substances — some of which is hazardous to the environment and some of which can be repurposed. In this article, we’re going to look at how to dispose of or recycle the three most common types of household batteries — single-use alkaline, rechargeable lithium ion, and more heavy-duty acid-based car batteries.

“How should I get rid of one-time-use alkaline batteries?”

Either the remote control of the television is dead or your wireless keyboard isn’t connecting anymore. It’s time for a set of fresh AA, AAA, D, or some other variety of alkaline battery you find on a grocery store end-cap. We’re all probably guilty of simply hucking single-use alkaline batteries in the kitchen trash. Guess what? That’s not all that bad. Yep — it’s not the end of the world. Still, we all know that this isn’t the best way to dispose of these batteries. Because single-use alkaline batteries contain a variety of materials ranging from lithium, zinc, cadmium, and sometimes lead or mercury, we really should be recycling these as responsibly as possible. For this purpose, we’d recommend having a household receptacle for used single-use batteries and then recycling them at your local recycling center.

“How should I recycle rechargeable batteries?”

If you’re looking to get rid of rechargeable batteries, such as lithium-ion batteries that are found in cameras, phones, laptops, and power tools, we’re assuming you either no longer have the device or the batteries are finished. If you simply do not have the device anymore, you may consider attempting to sell or give the batteries to someone still using the applicable device model. If the battery is no longer functioning properly, recycling lithium-ion batteries is a definite must. Not only do these batteries contain many hazardous materials that may contaminate landfills and other waste dumping locations, but nearly all of the materials contained within these batteries are recyclable. Fortunately for you, recycling these batteries has never been easier with a service called Call2Recycle. Call2Recycle is a nation-wide battery recycling effort with drop locations at most big-box hardware stores. You can find a Call2Recycle location near you using their online locator.

“How do I dispose of used car batteries?”

If you drive a car, especially if you’re the type that likes to service your own vehicle, you will more than likely be faced with what to do with your car battery once it no longer works. If you have your battery changed at a service station, the station will more than likely recycle the battery for you. If you plan on saving some money by changing out the battery in your own car, you will definitely want to recycle the battery in a safe and timely fashion. Most car batteries contain lead-acid — a substance that you don’t want sitting around in your garage for an extended period of time. Your best bet is to contact your local AAA center. AAA has a great reputation for recycling used car batteries. Some auto parts stores, such as AutoZone and Firestone, have programs to help you recycle used car batteries as well.  


As leading demolition professionals, we firmly believe in recycling materials whenever possible. Whether you need selective demolition or complete demolition of structures, reach out to your friends at DT Specialized Services for responsible structural demolition.