Every year, fires caused by improper battery disposal cost over a billion dollars and threaten the lives of operators. Properly disposing of your batteries saves money and lives!

Types of Batteriesalkaline battery types

Single Use:

  • Alkaline and Zinc-Carbon Batteries are the everyday household batteries (AAA, AA, C, D, and 9v) used in flashlights, remote controls, and other appliances.
    • button cell batteriesButton-Cell Batteries are the small, round “button-cell” type batteries found in items such as watches and hearing aids.

Rechargeable Batteries

  • This is a type of electrical battery which can be charged, discharged into a load, and recharged many times.types of rechargeable batteries
  • These can be found in your cell phone, computer, other electronics, power tools, and car.
  • Lithium Batteries pose a significant fire and safety hazard and should NEVER be thrown in the trash!

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Recycling Batteries

Why recycle:

  • Batteries in the trash produce toxic heavy metals such as lead, arsenic, zinc, cadmium, copper and mercury. They can leach into the ground water and make their way into the food chain.
  • Recycling saves resources because recovered plastic and metals can be used to make new batteries.

Where to recycle:

  • Single Use Batteries:
    • Alkaline and Zine-Carbide: Currently, there is not a free recycling program available in Maine for these batteries. HelloCycle in Biddeford, ME offers a subscription recycling service that includes alkaline batteries. Small quantities may be safely and legally (except in California) disposed of in normal household trash. Or try to reduce your use of single use batteries and invest in rechargeable batteries instead!
    • Button-Cell Batteries: These should NOT go in the trash. They can be recycled or taken to a local hazardous waste facility, such as Casella’s Hamden, ME Transfer Station.
  • Rechargeable batteries
    • Call2Recycle offers a free recycling program for rechargeable batteries, with collection sites at many municipal transfer stations and recycling centers, and at some hardware stores.. The program accepts all types of rechargeable batteries (Ni-Cd,  lithium, metal hydride), including those from power tools in laptops, tablets and other portable electronic products. The program also accepts cell phones, and small sealed lead acid batteries. To find recycling locations near you visit the Call2Recycle website.
    • Follow these links for more detailed battery information from Maine DEP, US EPA, and NRRA

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Office of Sustainability
312-314 Corbett Hall
Orono, Maine 04469-5774
Tel: 207.581.1571