Battery Disposal Guidelines

Option 1: Campus Mail

Send used batteries through campus mail for disposal? When the following are true:

  • The batteries are not leaking or corroded
  • The batteries are alkaline(Examples are brand name batteries such as Duracell or Energizer and include AAA, AA, C, D, 9 volt
  • The package weighs less than 2 pounds(approximate) (if it weighs more than 2 pounds, use option 2)

How to do it:

  • Cover the terminals with plastic nonconductive tape (Scotch® tape or electrical tape) to prevent the possibility of spark.
  • Place the batteries in a sturdy bag or container. Limit the package weight to 2 pounds or less.
  • Address the package to "Used Batteries" , Chemical Management Center

Option 2: Campus Mail

Request a hazardous waste pickup if a battery weighs more than 2 pounds.

How to do it:

  • E-mail a request for pickup to
  • Include this information:
    • Your name
    • Phone number
    • The quantity of batteries
    • Building
    • Room number where the batteries are located

Hazards of Batteries:

Many batteries contain toxic and hazardous materials such as mercury, lead, cadmium, silver, and sulfuric acid. The US EPA has designated these as universal wastes rather than hazardous wastes with the goal of promoting recycling. Although not hazardous wastes, these batteries must still be managed in an environmentally correct manner. They cannot be placed in the regular trash.

Examples of Universal Waste batteries collected and recycled include:

  • Nickel cadmium (NiCad); found in cell phones, portable instruments, and lap top computers
  • Nickel metal hydride (Ni-MH); found in cell phones, portable instruments, and lap top computers
  • Lithium ion
  • Mercury
  • Silver button
  • Sealed lead acid –commonly used for battery backup applications