Batteries Power Modern Life. Know How to Manage Their End of Life.

February 17, 2024 | Published by Julie Buchanan

Batteries are such a part of our lives that they have their own day on the calendar. February 18 is National Battery Day.

Each U.S. household contains an average of 8.4 devices that run on rechargeable batteries. Perhaps the most popular is the lithium-ion battery found in our smartphones, laptops, tablets, toys and other devices.

Lithium-ion batteries store a large amount of energy in a small space. When these batteries are damaged, misused or improperly disposed of, the battery’s components can ignite.

Never place electronic devices or their batteries in your trash or recycling.

Intense fires caused by lithium-ion batteries put waste and recycling workers’ lives at risk. Facilities have had to shut down and trucks have been destroyed by battery fires.

VIDEO: Hanover County’s “Battery Disposal 101”

Manage dead batteries safely

The good news is most rechargeable batteries can be recycled through special programs. Even at their end of life, they contain metals and materials that are valuable to the circular economy.

  • Check with your local public works department or use CVWMA’s Recycling Wizard to find battery collection sites in your community.
  • Watch the CVWMA calendar for upcoming electronics recycling events.
  • Take batteries to retail stores such as Batteries Plus, Battery Barn, home improvement stores and electronics retailers. Many bicycle shops also take e-bike batteries.

Let’s prevent dangerous battery fires like this one:

Firefighters work to extinguish a fire in a recycling truck that started because of batteries. Never place electronics or their batteries in recycling or trash.

MORE ARTICLES: “Why We Must Dispose of Batteries Properly

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