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The Ultimate Guide To Laptop Battery Disposal

Image by Andreluiz Cunha from Pixabay

A battery is simply an electrochemical device that converts chemical energy to electrical energy to provide power to electronic devices. Batteries have become essential components of our daily lives since we utilize batteries to carry out tasks ranging from powering laptops to cars.

However, due to the hazardous materials such as heavy metals, lead or acid contained in batteries, they need to be properly stored and cared for before disposing them to minimize the risk of fire and environmental pollution. If batteries are thrown out with the regular garbage, they can jeopardize the ecological integrity of both landfills and incinerator emissions.

There are several methods of disposing batteries, depending on the type of batteries and their uses. Batteries can be disposed in appropriate recycling facilities, hazardous waste facilities, or at designated drop-off sites in your community.

There are two types of batteries:

(1) primary – batteries that cannot be reused

(2) secondary (rechargeable) – batteries that can be reused.

Primary Batteries

Come in different sizes, and they primarily power elementary battery-operated devices like remote controls or toys. They are mostly made of non-hazardous materials and therefore can be disposed of directly into your regular trash.

Examples:

  • Alkaline batteries mostly found in smoke detectors, remotes and wall clocks. These batteries can be safely and properly disposed of with normal household waste.
  • Button batteries are mostly used to power simple gadget like watches. However, they must be disposed of with care since they contain silver oxide, lithium, mercuric oxide, or zinc-air, which are hazardous materials. They should be disposed in a hazardous waste collection site or recycling facility due to the heavy toxic substances they contain.
Rechargeable batteries

Contain hazardous materials like cadmium and nickel sealed up inside. These materials can pose environmental threats if not handled properly and are carelessly thrown in incinerators or landfill. They are best disposed of in a hazardous waste collection site, recycling facility, or an electronics retailer that recycles batteries.

Examples:

  • Lithium batteries primarily power electronics such as laptops, digital cameras, mobile phones. These batteries can be disposed in a recycling center or hazardous waste collection site, or donated to refurbishes and recyclers.
  • Nickel metal hydride and nickel-cadmium batteries are found in electronics such as cordless power tools, digital cameras, two-way radios, and cordless phones. It contains heavy metals that are can be hazardous to the environment. They are best disposed of in a hazardous waste collection site or recycling facility.
  • Small sealed lead acid batteries are uncommon in homes and are found in emergency devices, emergency exit signs, security systems, mobility scooters, and other special-use items. They are best disposed of in a hazardous waste collection site, recycling facility, or an electronics retailer that recycles batteries.

Your Battery Disposal options:

The correct procedure for disposing of different types of batteries may vary significantly by region. It is therefore essential to check the websites of your state for detailed guidelines in your neighborhood. You should be able to find appropriate hazardous waste disposal and recycling facilities near by. You can also find hazardous waste collection programs or scheduled events that will allow you to safely dispose of your old batteries.