Have you ever wondered why it is necessary to recycle batteries? Living in an innovative world like ours leads us to use and, at the same time, dispose of a large number of batteries.

Many objects we use today require batteries to function. They add up accumulate, and the first intention is to throw them in the trash when they are worn out. It is the simplest and easiest thing to do.

But if we stop to analyze what elements make up a battery and how harmful they can be, you will surely think twice. We will tell you why they should be recycled, so you don’t expose yourself, take care of yourself and preserve the planet.

Recycling batteries: Learn about their components

Depending on the element we are talking about, its components will vary. Likewise, there are several ways in which batteries can be recycled. Knowing what ingredients they have will give you a notion of the danger we expose ourselves if these contents are no longer inside their casing.

Types of batteries

The most common types of electric accumulators are:

  • Alkaline batteries. They are the shortest lasting and most common. Their components are Potassium hydroxide, zinc, and magnesium dioxide.
  • Nickel batteries. They were among the first to be sold. They have a deficient performance. They are available in various combinations: iron, nickel, cadmium, and nickel.
  • Lead-acid. Used in some types of vehicles, such as motorcycles. Lead is one of their main components.
  • Lithium-ion. Most commonly used in cell phones and small portable devices.
  • Lithium polymer. Similar to the previous ones, but with more energy. They should not be discharged to less than 30% of their capacity because they stop working and become inoperable.

This diversity of batteries and materials causes their recycling to be different. In some cases, part of the elements that compose them can be rescued, although the methods are not the same.

Recycling batteries is the best option.

Why do we say that recycling battery is the best option rather than simply throwing them away? For several reasons:

  1. Because of their components

Batteries are the source of electrical power for many electronic objects. A metallic cover forms them, and inside they contain components that, in their majority, are metals: lead, arsenic, mercury, and chromium, among others.

When this metal casing starts to deteriorate or oxidize, it releases the elements contained inside into the environment. The damage capacity of a discarded battery can reach 1000 years.

This means that this battery can harm the planet for a long time once thrown in the trash.


  1. They are not biodegradable

Most batteries contain components that are not biodegradable. This means two things:

  • They are not of organic origin.
  • They do not decompose quickly.

If we add to the short life of batteries, we face a problem. Batteries are short-lived and, therefore, we discard large quantities of them.

For example, it is estimated that 3 billion batteries are thrown away each year by Americans, and this number grows every year, and most of them end up in a landfill.

There, over time, they oxidize, and their metal casing breaks. This means an extraordinary proportion of batteries begin to release highly toxic elements into the environment.

  1. Some of its components are reusable

Through different techniques, some of their components can be recovered and reused. Examples of these procedures are:

  • Incineration, since batteries are incinerated and, in this way, some of their elements, such as cadmium or iron, can be recovered.
  • Separation of saline and metallic parts, since a physicochemical procedure is activated to recover some metals after that.

Although the recycling process is more complex, these represent two main phases.

What to do? Recycling batteries

This issue should not be neglected since the damage caused by tons of batteries falling apart in our nature is irreparable. The ideal is to collect them and take them to some point of attention where they are received.

Governments are implementing battery reception centers so that citizens can dispose of them there. Then, they take care of their recycling, according to the material they are made of.

If exposed to the open air, these components could damage nature and become part of the productive system again. Through recycling, everything is put to good use.

There is much to be done in this respect, depending on the region. Raising awareness and taking measures to recycle batteries is a path taken daily by day. One less battery in the trash is life for our planet. Let’s recycle!