Where do Recycled Batteries Go?

Two barrels filled with batteries for recycling
PGH Batteries periodically sends 55 gallon barrels to a national battery recycler. We send these types of batteries: alkaline batteries, NiCd batteries, NiMh batteries, lithium-ion batteries, and lithium primary batteries. We shipped these two barrels of batteries out this month.

Where do recycled batteries go after PGH Batteries picks them up from you? They get divided into two different recycling streams:

  • We send Alkaline batteries, NiCd batteries, NiMh batteries, lithium-ion batteries, and lithium primary batteries to a national battery recycler. We collect them in 55 gallon drums, which we send periodically to the national battery recycler. The picture above shows 2 barrels we shipped out this month. Some of the batteries are revenue neutral, some are not. Typically, we pay around $800 to have the batteries in a shipment this size recycled.
  • We send Lead-acid batteries upstream via our regional lead-acid battery distributor to get broken up and the lead re-used. The industry recycles 99% of battery lead, which is why this otherwise toxic material is treated so benignly in batteries. Lead is the most recycled material there is. By law in Pennsylvania, anyone that sells lead-acid batteries must accept lead-acid batteries for recycling
Pallet containing two layers of lead acid batteries to be recycled
Lead acid batteries ready to return to our regional battery distributor to go upstream to be recycled. Note that flooded lead-acid batteries are treated as hazardous material by the Department of Transportation, and must be packaged and marked appropriately for transport.

To read more about PGH Batteries’ recycling policies, click HERE.

PGH Batteries
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