How to Dispose of Single-Use Batteries

Hazardous industrial waste

Many everyday household items need disposing of with care. Typically across America, we don’t think twice about just tossing them into our regular trash. In our newest blog series, ‘How to Dispose of,’ we will look at the best way to dispose of everyday items. Today it will be the standard single-use household battery. What do you do with them when they die, and what should you be doing with them?

Our homes have plenty of electronics from tv remotes, flashlights, toys, and smoke detectors. It is important to know what to do with these batteries when they die. This, of course, depends on the type of battery and its use. For example, the batteries in your tv remote are different than the rechargeable ones used in your laptop. Here is a better understanding of the various household batteries and how to dispose of them.

Disposing of Single-Use Household Batteries

This type of battery is the most common household battery. They come in a few different sizes, including AAA, AA, C D- cell 9 volt, and others. These batteries are typically the ones in your smoke detectors, toys, flashlights, and remotes. If the battery is not rechargeable, it would fit in this category.

Can single-use batteries be thrown in the trash?

These types of batteries can be discarded in the trash (unless you live in California) because they now make them of common metals that are deemed non- hazardous by the federal government. One exception of this rule is for the button battery typically found in things like a watch; these are hazardous, so dispose of them like a rechargeable battery.

Can single-use batteries be recycled?

You can recycle single-use batteries, but you might find that there is a fee associated with this.

Recycling single-use batteries

  • Contact us to see best how we can help you in recycling your single-use batteries.

    Sunrise Sanitation
    Recycled products often last longer!
  • Search your area for recycling centers that accept single-use batteries using Earth911’s Recycling Search.
  • Find a mail-in recycling program that accepts batteries. Many of these companies, like Battery Solutions and Call2Recyle, will sell you a container to collect used batteries that can then be mailed back to them when it is full. Most of these programs have a container to sell for storing used batteries that you mail when filled.

Prepping single-use batteries for recycling

  • Put clear tape over each end of the battery to prevent any current transfer. You can also bag each battery individually.
  • Store the batteries in a cardboard or plastic container that doesn’t conduct electricity in case there is a spark.

A better option to reduce your need for disposing of single-use batteries is to use rechargeable batteries instead. With today’s technology, these batteries can be used more than 1,000 times and recycled at no cost to you.

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