Disposing of old lithium laptop batteries correctly is important. Not only can you suffer legal consequences like fines if you do not dispose of your laptop batteries correctly, but it can also be incredibly detrimental to the environment.
Once your battery is truly dead and no longer holds charge it is best to dispose of it properly and safely. Most people tend to throw them away with their regular waste, not realising how damaging this can be.
This is why you should take a little time to understand how to properly dispose of lithium batteries and the implications you may face if your old laptop batteries.
Can Lithium-Ion Batteries Be Recycled?
Both laptops themselves and their lithium-ion batteries can be recycled just like any other type of electronic waste. It’s very important that when recycling your laptop battery that you find a credible IT disposal service that follows the regulations.
Why Do Laptop Batteries Have to Be Recycled Properly?
The lithium that is contained in laptop batteries is a reactive element, meaning that, under the wrong conditions, lithium-ion batteries can combust and potentially cause a fire. That being said, these batteries are generally much less toxic than other types of batteries, therefore can be recycled fairly easily, with lots of reputable waste handlers being able to do so.
It’s important not to put them in with your general recycling as they may be around flammable materials like cardboard and paper which could ignite if the battery was to catch fire under pressure.
How Do You Correctly Dispose of a Laptop Battery – Here’s Your Options
Now that you know how not to dispose of your laptop battery, here are a few ways to do so safely and securely.
A.)Use the Manufacturers Recycling Program
Lots of laptop manufacturers operate their own battery recycling programs. Some of these schemes are even incentivised to prompt both individuals and businesses to correctly dispose of these batteries.
Companies like Lenovo and Asus have their own recycling programs, and lots of other laptop manufacturers also have similar programs for both businesses and individuals. As well as this, lots of large companies like supermarket chains and electronics stores like Currys have electronics recycling programs.
B.) Use a Local Recycling Centre
Many recycling and waste centres have electronics sections where you can properly dispose of electronics like old laptops and their batteries. If you search for ‘recycling centres near me’ in Google you can find local recycling centres and get in touch with them to see if they have battery recycling facilities.
C.) Use a Recycling Collection Scheme
There are also plenty of recycling collection schemes available to those who may struggle to get to a local recycling centre. Check the Gov website page for recycling collection, simply pop in your postcode and the page will direct you to your local council page which has more info on recycling collection.
D.) Battery Banks
Oftentimes, government bodies set up local battery banks at high-traffic places like supermarkets, gyms and petrol stations. These are a quick and convenient way to recycle your old batteries whilst you do your daily shop or fill your tank.
Advantages of Recycling Laptop Batteries
There are many benefits to properly recycling laptop batteries, both financial and environmental:
1. Good for the environment
Lots of laptop batteries contain chemicals that are harmful to the environment. Recycling them correctly can negate the harmful impact on the environment.
2. Avoid fines
Incorrectly disposing of laptop batteries can result in hefty fines. Avoid these fines by making sure you use a reputable recycling method that follows the correct rules and regulations.
3. Preservation of non-renewable materials
When laptop batteries are recycled properly the resources can be salvaged for further use. Precious metals like gold, platinum and lithium can all be reused in making new electronics.
4. Reduced risk of explosion / combustion
As mentioned, lots of batteries can prove dangerous under certain conditions. Properly recycling batteries negates this risk, with specific procedures in place to ensure this doesn’t happen.
5. It’s easy peasy!
Nowadays, recycling batteries has been easier than ever. Both local councils and businesses alike have schemes in place where you can easily recycle batteries, so there really is no excuse (and laziness doesn’t count!).
How are Batteries Recycled?
Lithium-Ion batteries have a specific recycling method. This is so that the potentially flammable lithium-ion is rendered inert and does not combust. The process involves fully discharging the battery to remove any stored energy that may otherwise react with moisture and set ablaze.
The next step is to freeze the battery to prevent any residual lithium from combusting during the crushing process. Some companies use a process to evaporate the electrolyte (lithium) to recover the reusable organic solvents that can then be used in making new electronics.
RecycleIT will help dispose of old laptop batteries the right way
Now you know why it is important to properly dispose of a laptop battery and how to do so, get in touch with your local council or look for battery recycling points in your local area.
Remember, do not throw your old batteries in the bin. Be smart, save the environment, preserve non-renewable resources and save yourself a hefty fine by properly recycling your old laptop batteries.
RecycleIT care about the world, that’s why we aim to refurbish, reuse and recycle every piece of IT equipment that you have safely, securely and ethically – even your old laptop batteries.
To arrange safe disposal of your redundant it equipment, feel free to drop us a message online.
Alternatively, give us a call on 0844 334 9653.