Household batteries are so commonplace that they can seem harmless, but improper storage and disposal can be dangerous. Here’s how you can responsibly get rid of your old batteries.
Where to Keep Them
Many batteries contain hazardous chemicals that can cause burns or irritate skin, and potentially harm the environment. The most common cause of chemical leakage is overheating, which can sometimes cause a battery to explode. Keep any new and used batteries away from extreme heat sources and in places where they can’t be reached by children or pets.
Don’t just throw them in the garbage!
- Alkaline batteries will leak chemicals that are harmful to the environment. Check with local electronics retailers — many of them will recycle them for you.
- 📱 Rechargeable lithium-ion batteries (like the one in your phone) can cause fires that are particularly difficult to extinguish. Contact recycling companies like Call2Recycle to properly dispose of them.
The Oregon Metro website has a handy online directory that will help you find a recycling solution.
- 💡 Pro tip: The directory also includes guidance on disposing of other electronics, construction materials, garden materials, and more.