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Where to Recycle Batteries

Where to Recycle Batteries

Battery recycling is part of everyone's environmental responsibility. There are several types of power packs and many of them contain toxic metals such as lead, mercury, and cadmium. Recycling batteries prevents these toxic substances from going into landfills which will eventually contaminate soil and groundwater.

Some batteries contain valuable materials like magnesium and zinc as well. These can be turned into something new by recycling, which will help reduce the amount of finite natural resources used in producing new batteries.

Where Can You Recycle Batteries in Australia?

There are plenty of recycling initiatives in the country from different companies and businesses. But first, keep in mind that you should never place your batteries in the recycling or waste bin. Lithium-ion and some rechargeable batteries are known to produce sparks that could start a fire or cause an explosion.

These are mostly the batteries used in power tools and gadgets such as laptops and mobile phones. To prevent this, it would be a good idea to put sticky tape around your battery terminals before recycling them.

Now, let's look at where you can recycle different types of batteries:

Small Batteries

Typical AA, AAA, and 9V batteries you use for your home devices can be brought to your local retailers that accept batteries for recycling. These include Aldi supermarkets, Officeworks, IKEA, and Battery World. If you happen to have a less common type of power pack, you can visit recyclingnearyou.com.au/batteries to check which retailers will accept them.

Car Batteries

Car batteries have the highest recycling rate out of all battery types. Tons of retailers and organisations such as Repco Auto Parts, Super Cheap Auto, and more have been supporting free car battery recycling, so you're likely to have no trouble looking for places you can bring them after use.

Power Tool Batteries

Recycling batteries for power tools is crucial in particular if they use older nickel-cadmium batteries. Cadmium is highly toxic and is considered a carcinogen as well, posing serious harm in case it leaks into the environment.

There are some council depots and retailers that recycle power tool batteries. For instance, Bunnings, Masters, and TradeTools offer a free pilot program for Tradies to kickstart power tool battery recycling. This service accepts power packs up to 500g in weight.

Lithium Batteries

Lithium is a highly reactive element, therefore its recycling process is more complex. This is also why you might have a bit of a hard time finding a recycling centre for lithium batteries like LiFePO4 batteries.

They need to be handled by qualified technicians that are trained to work with high voltages to safely disassemble the battery into modules. After taking them apart, these professionals will assess which cells can still be reused and which ones should be recycled.

You can search for professional lithium battery recycling organisations via Green Directory if you have a lithium camping battery to recycle or go through a list of battery recycling drop-off centres near you.

There are local government sectors with battery recycling bins too and you can always search online for appropriate recycling services that will accept your battery pack. If you live in rural areas, there are services that take mail-in batteries too.

Currently, more countries are actively promoting lithium battery recycling due to its several economic and environmental benefits.

It will also be helpful to familiarise yourself with the B-cycle program. It has approximately 100 partner organisations across Australia that provide accessible recycling drop-off points to make the process more convenient for the general public.

You might be wondering what happens to your batteries after you take them to battery recycling centres. They're usually processed to recover plastics and metals which can be used to manufacture new batteries. Perhaps the most popular company that provides this service in the country is Envirostream.

Envirostream is Australia's first onshore battery processor. It takes in lithium, nickel metal, and alkaline batteries and prides itself on being able to recover 95% of the materials used in power packs for recycling. Steel, copper, and aluminium are typically recycled, while the batteries' active components such as graphite and lithium are used for the production of new li-ion batteries.

Now that you know where to bring your batteries for recycling, you're definitely ready to be a battery owner! Get your power pack at Outbax today and enjoy the best prices plus free shipping. We have a collection of LiFePO4 batteries here so whether you're looking for a standard 12V 100Ah lithium battery or a couple of slimline lithium batteries, you're sure to get the best ones here.