Hardly you will have a day in which you don’t have used any battery-operated device or equipment. In one way or another, we are all connected to batteries, from your smartphone, laptops, cars to providing backup electricity to your homes and offices; there are numerous applications.
Being such an important and valuable device, batteries do have a life limit, and after their use, they need to be recycled. Not only is it important for the environment, but the safety of all of us. We will see in the later section what happens if we don’t recycle the batteries.
Nonetheless, there are various kinds of batteries available with different chemistry, features, and specifications. Therefore, it is crucial for us to see what type of battery is not recycled or what batteries can be recycled.
What happens when batteries are not recycled?
In today’s world, recycling has become a hot topic, and in order to save our resources, more and more steps are taken to ensure everything goes through the process of recycling. The same goes for the batteries.
Usually, we don’t care about it as much and throw away the batteries in garbage cans, and this is extremely dangerous for all. Not only are they a significant source of ever-increasing landfills, but also batteries can burst or start fires, resulting in casualties and a huge loss. Besides that, battery acid is also dangerous, and if you are exposed, it can cause serious health issues.
Thus, not only for the people’s health but not recycling the batteries is also risky for the mother earth. Other than that, conservation of natural resources is the need of the hour; we are losing useful material if we are not recycling the batteries.
However, in order to recycle the batteries, you must know their type and whether they are recyclable or not. For that reason, let’s now explore what kind of battery is not recycled.
Types of batteries: Recyclable or not?
From household batteries to industrial batteries, each one has different characteristics. Other than that, some batteries are rechargeable and are used for a longer time, while some batteries are non-rechargeable, and you have to dispose of or recycle them after they are dead.
Below we will explore the most popular batteries one by one and will see whether they are recyclable or not.
Alkaline and carbon-zinc battery
From regular household items such as clocks, remote controls, and electronic toys use alkaline or zinc-carbon batteries. Most commonly known as AA or AAA, these batteries are non-rechargeable and can be recycled. It can then be utilized in a number of ways, such as making steel products, plastic, or papers. However, the recycling process of alkaline batteries is somewhat difficult, and thus you can dispose of it with regular trash as well.
A small dry cell battery comes in various sizes and is used in a number of applications. This type of battery is entirely recyclable. Many recycling plants are there that utilize silver-oxide and pay you a good amount of money in returns.
Talking about mercury batteries, it comes in different sizes. Though it is used for various applications ranging from medical to household items, these batteries must be handled with care and need recycling because if it burns, it releases toxic fumes and may cause serious irritation if you get exposed to it.
Lead-acid batteries are generally used in vehicles, and the process of recycling is also cost-effective and straightforward. Thus, it has a higher rate of recycling than other batteries.
The usage of lithium-ion batteries is increasing rapidly due to versatile applications. Though the batteries are non-toxic and non-spillable, they can result in a major proportion of landfills, and thus recycling these batteries is the better choice. Materials recovered can be used for the formation of new products.
Though nickel-cadmium batteries are found easily due to their versatile use, they are hazardous for the environment if not treated properly. These batteries must be isolated from the system if not in use. Recycling of nickel-cadmium is done by professionals.
All batteries are recyclable; however, the procedure and the cost might differ from each type and considering that we decide whether it is feasible to recycle a particular type of battery or not. Batteries that are not hazardously regarded as safe for disposal while all other batteries must be recycled or disposed of with proper procedure.
Sorting out batteries based on the chemistry and then the convenience of recycling the batteries are the factors we often ignore the reusability aspect and leave our batteries for landfills. However, recycling is crucial for sustainability, and thus you must share this article so that we all know about the recyclability of batteries.