Battery Recycling in Washington: What You Need to Know

When it comes to safely disposing of any type of battery, explore everything you need to know about battery recycling in Washington!

Are you looking to get rid of your old batteries in Washington?

Resources come and go, and while getting them is easy, people don’t often think about their disposal. Don’t leave all your batteries under the sink. They can leak, ruin your stuff, and even cause serious illness.

Instead, recycle those batteries.

Did you know that improper disposal of batteries contributes to pollution? Batteries contain lead and sulfuric acid, which are dangerous to marine life. Giving batteries to recycling companies is a great way of battery disposal.

Disposing of any type of battery safely is a must for any responsible citizen. However, recycling batteries is better for the environment. Read on to explore everything you need about battery recycling in Washington!

Where and How to Recycle Your Batteries in Washington

Check your battery labels to identify the battery chemistry. This will help you identify the right way to recycle your battery. If a battery is rechargeable, it should not get thrown in the trash.

It’s best to contact a recycling location near you. Ask if they can take in your batteries, and make sure to know your specific type of battery. Before giving, wrap them in plastic and cover both terminals using electrical tape.

1. Alkaline and Zinc-Carbon Batteries

Alkaline and zinc-carbon batteries are the easiest to recycle. You can drop these off at a Household Hazardous Waste Collection Event. As a handling precaution, separate different batteries into individual plastic bags.

Place non-conductive tape like electrical tape on the terminals to avoid any unwanted reactions. The battery’s terminals are the (+) and (-) parts that send charge.

While you can dump these in the trash, you may also hand them to reclamation companies, which accept used zinc-carbon batteries and recycle them for you.

2. Button-Cell or Coin Batteries

Button batteries are small and pose a swallowing hazard. This is why it is important to throw them away out of reach of children.

Contact the manufacturer to see if they have recycling options. Before disposing of your button-cell or coin batteries, place them in a plastic bag. Cover your batteries in electrical tape as an extra safety precaution.

3. Lithium Single-Use Batteries and Lithium-Ion Batteries (Li-ion)

It is important to cover the terminals, as Lithium batteries spark and cause fires. If your battery becomes damaged, contact your manufacturer and ask how to handle it. Check for the word “Lithium” in your battery packaging to ensure it is lithium. Make sure it has no charge left to avoid causing fires when you give it to a recycler. If you can’t remove the battery from the device, you can take the entire thing to any certified electronic recycler. Place your battery in a plastic bag and put electrical tape on the terminals. You should also exercise proper handling precautions, such as using protective equipment if needed.

4. Nickel Cadmium Batteries (Ni-Cd)

If your nickel-cadmium batteries are removable, do so. Then, bring them to the nearest recycling plant.

5. Nickel Metal Hydride Batteries (Ni-MH)

Identify first if your Nickel Metal Hydride batteries are rechargeable. Then, you can drop them off at a recycling center near you if they are rechargeable.

6. Lead-Acid Batteries

This battery needs special handling precautions, which is why you should only bring them to specialized battery recyclers. When in doubt, you can always consult your local programs focused on hazardous waste.

7. Medium and Large-Scale Li-ion Batteries

If you are unsure how to dispose of your batteries, there are directions in the package for disposal. Battery Recyclers of America can recycle medium or large-scale li-ion batteries for energy. Do not put these batteries in the trash or municipal recycling bins.

Its complexity and large size make them unsafe to remove by a consumer. A manufacturer also contains instructions and safety instructions on removing them. If your battery is in an automobile, you can take your car battery to a recycling company.

Types Of Batteries You Can Recycle in Washington

You may have thrown away an alkaline and zinc-carbon battery without realizing it. While there is a lot of concern about car battery disposal, the same can’t get said about zinc-carbon. Batteries such as AA, AAA, and D are all zinc-carbon batteries.

Common Industries:

If you own a watch, you must have encountered button-cell or coin batteries. These batteries are the round and small batteries you put inside your watches. These batteries also power hearing aids, medical devices, and even keyless vehicle entry remotes.

Common Industries:

Lithium batteries can either be chargeable or non-rechargeable. Most of these lithium batteries are single-use. Watches, cameras, smoke detectors, and handheld games use lithium batteries.

They look much like alkaline batteries and may be hard to distinguish.

But some lithium batteries have specialized shapes made for specific equipment like cameras. Make sure to read the label on your battery to distinguish what kind of battery it is.

Common Industries:

If you have cordless power tools, they are most likely powered by Nickel-Cadmium. You can find this type of battery in digital and video cameras and bio-medical equipment. These often get confused with A, AAA, and alkaline batteries as they have a similar look.

Common Industries:

These batteries got used in older cellphone models, e-cigarettes, laptops, and digital cameras. Some small and large household appliances also use lithium-ion batteries. Since they are often a component of appliances, they might not be removable.

Common Industries:

These batteries get used to power cellphones, digital cameras, and cordless power tools. These batteries were once common as they got used for two-way radios but have dwindled in use.

Common Industries:

These batteries contain 18 pounds of lead. Lead-acid batteries get used as engine-starting batteries for cars. These batteries can get found in automobiles, motorcycles, and boats. Most large vehicles also use lead-acid batteries.

But these batteries also have use outside of automotive. They can get used as backup power for sump pumps.

Common Industries:

Most electric vehicles run on advanced lithium-ion storage systems. This means they have to be an energy storage system that can be used on and off-grid. These batteries are often hybrid systems.

Hybrid systems work to power the electric motors in electric vehicles. Due to the amount of energy they store, they also power other energy storage systems. These batteries are the ones installed in buildings in case of power outages.

Common Industries:

Why Should You Recycle Batteries in WA?

These batteries get used for a lot of everyday items in the household. These include our TV remote controls, alarm clocks, and children’s toys. We often throw away the used TV remote batteries without giving them a second thought.

Over 90% of zinc-carbon batteries end up in landfills. This improper disposal of these batteries has a dire impact on our environment.

When its metallic cylinder corrodes, its zinc carbon gets into the soil. This reaches our water supply, which waters the food we eat. Too much exposure to these heavy metals can cause neurological issues and cancer.

Nickel-cadmium is another battery that often finds itself in a landfill. When the metallic cylinder of a Ni-Cd battery corrodes, it seeps into the soil. This gets into our water resources and food systems.

Exposure to cadmium leads to respiratory problems. This leads to an increase in your chances of getting lung cancer. It’s known to cause congenital disabilities when pregnant women are exposed to cadmium.


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Battery Disposal Laws and Regulations for Washington

There are proper rules for the disposal of batteries at home. Common batteries include A, AA, AAA, D, and even button batteries. These rules include dropping them off at a Household Hazardous Waste Collection Event.

Counties should also have Permanent Centers or designated collection sites. Lead is a hazardous chemical and can not get thrown in the trash. This means you should not throw it in a municipal recycling bin.

Federal law also states that batteries with certain chemicals need to get recycled. This is why it is essential to check your battery for its type. These batteries include lithium ion and lead batteries. Failure to follow these laws results in a fine.

Call the household hazardous waste collection program if your battery contains hazardous material. Batteries such as lithium single-use batteries and lithium-ion batteries can cause fires. This means they should not get placed in the trash and recycling bins.

Frequently Asked Questions About Battery Recycling in Washington

Where Can I Recycle Single-use Batteries in Washington?

Battery Recyclers of America recycles single-use batteries in Washington. You can receive payment and proof of recycling after you have given them your batteries. They are EPA approved and have recycling certificates for all batteries.

Can Batteries Be Recycled?

Yes, all batteries can get recycled. You can bring your battery to recycling plants or retailers so they can handle the recycling for you.

How Do I Dispose of Batteries Near Me?

Make sure to read the directions in your battery for proper disposal. Read the guidelines in your state for a proper guideline. Washington has permanent centers where you can drop off your used household batteries. Some batteries need proper handling and safety precautions for disposal. There are also recycling companies that can pick up your batteries for you

How Much of a Battery Can be Recycled?

A recycling plant can recover anywhere from 25% to 96% of your batteries. This is why it’s important to recycle them to save resources.

Join the Battery Recycling Washington Movement Today

These are only a few of the proper ways you can recycle and dispose of your batteries. The battery recycling Washington movement has many benefits for nature and you. There are more creative ways to recycle used batteries, like in this article.

Need to get rid of some old batteries? Don’t dump them just yet. Contact us today, and we’ll recycle your batteries for you.

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