It should come as no surprise that batteries contain toxic chemicals that can damage the environment when disposed of improperly. That’s the bad news. The good news is that many batteries are made from lead. They can easily be recycled as they are composed of about 70% lead. Most of the lead can be reused.
The following are the two types of batteries when considering recycling:
- Single use batteries
- Rechargeable Batteries
In some states it is illegal to throw out any battery and must be recycled. In other states, it is still permissible to dispose of common purpose batteries but may have restrictions on larger scale batteries such as motor vehicle batteries.
Recycling Rechargeable Batteries Are Not as Cost Effective
Rechargeable batteries can be recycled but are not as cost effective to do it. Still, with growing environmental concerns and stricter laws, the landscape for this is changing. In the near future, you may find that most states require recycling of all batteries. Your municipality should publish recycling instructions if changes are enacted.
Many recycling plants are set up to recycle for lead acid types of batteries. These plants are finding that lithium-ion (Li-ion) are being included into the mix. At high volumes of processing, it is difficult to tell when this occurs and it has been known to cause fires and personal injury. Mixing the Li-ion in with the lead acid can cause explosions. Visit this website for more information on recycling batteries in San Diego.