Batteries are essential to modern life, powering everything from smartphones and laptops to cars and home appliances. But when their lifespans end, they can pose a significant environmental hazard if disposed of incorrectly. This guide will cover the correct way to dispose of batteries correctly, including what types can be recycled, whether they can be thrown in the trash, and how M&M Waste can assist with proper battery disposal. If you are performing a complete cleanup, rent a dumpster and do it all at once.
No, not all batteries can be disposed of the same way. Some contain toxic chemicals like lead, mercury, and cadmium, posing serious environmental hazards if improperly handled.
Batteries can be divided into two categories: rechargeable and non-rechargeable. Rechargeable batteries, such as those found in laptops and smartphones, contain recyclable materials like lithium, cobalt, and nickel; non-rechargeable batteries, like alkaline ones commonly found in household devices, can be thrown away but should still be handled carefully.
As previously noted, non-rechargeable batteries can be thrown in the trash; however, this is not recommended as it contains heavy metals that leach into soil and water supplies, polluting both environment and human health. Batteries contain lead which poses a hazard to human health and potential environmental contaminants.
Before disposing of batteries in the trash, it is important to take certain precautions to reduce the risk of harm. First, wrap the ends with electrical tape or another insulating material to prevent short-circuiting. Next, place them into a secure, leakproof container such as a plastic bag or sealed container before discarding them in the garbage.
Recycling batteries is an integral part of reducing environmental impact. However, it should be noted that recycled batteries should never be thrown away with other trash items.
Recycling centers can extract valuable materials like lithium and cobalt from rechargeable batteries and reuse them for new ones or other products. Recycling batteries reduces the need for mining and minimizes landfill waste.
Recycling batteries is the ideal way to get rid of them. Recycling allows materials inside to be reused, reducing the need for new extraction from the earth. Furthermore, recycling batteries keep toxic chemicals from landfills and protects the environment.
Before recycling batteries, it is essential to prepare them properly. All rechargeable batteries - lithium-ion, nickel-cadmium, and nickel-metal hydride - should be fully discharged before recycling; this can be accomplished using the device until all energy has been depleted from the cell.
Once the battery has been discharged, it should be placed in a designated recycling bin at locations like M&M Waste.
Non-rechargeable batteries, such as alkaline ones, can be discarded without concern. However, it's important to wrap the ends of the battery with electrical tape or another insulating material to prevent short-circuiting.
Disposing of batteries safely and responsibly can be a real issue for businesses that generate large volumes. Fortunately, M&M Waste offers an effective battery recycling program to make this task simple and stress-free. Other services offered by M&M Waste include dumpster rental for full cleanup jobs!