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Household Battery Recycling

Household batteries come in two main forms: rechargeable and single-use. The extent to which each can be recycled depends on a variety of factors including battery type and materials able to be recovered from the recycling process. According to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency:

“Batteries are manufactured using different mixtures of chemical elements designed to meet customers’ power and performance needs. Batteries can contain metals such as mercury, lead, cadmium, nickel and silver, which can pose a threat to human health or the environment when improperly managed at the end of their service life.”

As fire damage resulting from improper handling of lithium-ion batteries has increased in the last few years, so has the need to understand how and why we should take extra care in properly disposing of this specific item. For more information, check out our new Lithium-Ion Battery Recycling Fact Sheet (available in both English and Spanish).

Important Notes on Recycling or Disposing of Batteries: When preparing batteries for recycling or disposal, always cover the electrical connections or battery terminals with a non-conductive tape (electrical or vinyl) or seal individual batteries in separate plastic bags so they cannot conduct electricity. This helps eliminate potential fire or explosion hazards when batteries are collected in a bulk container. If your batteries appear damaged, contact the battery or device manufacturer for handling information. Also, prior to transporting batteries to an outlet offering recycling, please contact the entity to confirm they accept your specific type of battery, as well as to inquire about any fees associated with the service.

Below are summaries of different types of batteries, their uses, and how they can be recycled or disposed of safely:

 Accordion ‭[1]‬

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 Accordion ‭[2]‬

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Additional Information

Other useful household battery recycling information can be found via the following links:

Used Household Batteries (U.S. Environmental Protection Agency)

What Can I Recycle? (Call2Recycle)

How to Recycle Single-Use Batteries (Earth911)

How to Recycle Rechargeable Batteries (Earth911)

Safe Battery Disposal (Lancaster County Solid Waste Management Authority)

If you have specific questions regarding household battery recycling, please contact us at