How to Dispose Of Car Batteries Properly?

Has it ever crossed your mind how to dispose of car batteries when they are not functional? This car part dispenses the needed power to start a vehicle and supplies power for other short-term use of elements like stereos, lights, and GPS.  

However, auto batteries possess a life cycle of 3-4 years, and you may start noticing some signs of a dead battery after that period. A suitable battery replacement would get your car working again, but you can’t just throw your old battery in the trash. 

By law, batteries are not disposable alongside household wastes, and doing so can cause some environmental and health hazards. Thus, it would be crucial to find out the proper way of doing away with your scrap car batteries.

How to Dispose Of Car Batteries Properly

car battery disposal near me

One breakthrough within the automotive industry is the rise in the quality of auto batteries; car battery manufacturers keep providing car owners with apt batteries that empower their vehicles to start.

From regular batteries to EV batteries, there is a wide range of options for different automotive applications. Like every other thing, these car batteries also come with their concern, and one of the many is the disposal of car batteries when no longer workable or in use.

Dumping scrap batteries in landfills can cause severe environmental hazards due to the lead and sulfuric acid constituents. Leaving them stocked up in your garage isn’t a good idea either. However, it would help to get the following done before ejecting these batteries.

Remove the Battery

Once an old battery doesn’t hold a charge anymore and stops operating effectively, remove it with caution to replace it. First, there might be potential leaks, and you have to protect your hands from coming in contact with the battery’s acid.

Kindy ensures you remove the negative and positive cable using a suitable wrench. Move further to inspect any “hold-down” accessories keeping the battery in place; remove such and get the battery out.  

Store it Properly

Before ditching your old battery, it is crucial to store it properly to avoid leaks of harmful components as you transport the “dump location.” Once you remove this car part, ensure you bag it safely using plastic receptacles. 

Be cautious on how you place the battery to avoid leaks further. Hence, it would be best to store it upright and keep it safe from harsh movements while you quickly dispose of it. 

That being said, here is how to get rid of your old car batteries.

Visit a Hazardous Chemical Municipality

There are locations where folks can drop off hazardous wastes within the US, and you can search for one near you and drop off your scrap car battery. This option appears as one of the quickest and easiest you can think of, and they would handle these batteries appropriately without causing damages to the environment. 

Dump Old Batteries with Metal Recycling Establishments

You can find many firms that handle metal recycling, irrespective of the type. Such locations can collect your old batteries, and the good news is that you may get some cash rewards in return whenever you drop off your old car batteries.

Drop it Off at Your Retailer

Most battery retailers out there can take your old auto battery when you go to purchase new ones. While some might charge you a fee for dropping your battery off with them, you would find most of these retail stores doing so for free. 

If you are searching for where to dispose of a car battery for free, search for options willing to let you drop off your scrap auto batteries with them without charge. You can use the car battery disposal at Walmart or AutoZone battery disposal services. 

Recycling Old Batteries

Recycling car batteries is a brilliant move for keeping the environment safe and is obtainable legally because of the ban on the illegal disposal of batteries in the trash. 

So, how does auto battery recycling works?

The first step involves battery collection, as these companies set up collection points. After that, the machine breaks these batteries into smaller pieces while subjected to a hammer mill. These chunks flow to a receptacle where weighty materials like lead appear as sediments with the plastics floating atop. 

The next phase is the removal of plastics and liquids; the recycler melts and squeezes the plastics out as pellets. Kindly note that these plastic pellets can aid in manufacturing new battery cases—hence, battery manufacturers buy them after the recovery process.

The old battery acid gets reclaimed during this operation and converted to sodium sulfate, which is handy for producing glass, detergent, and textile. Finally, the recycler melts the chunks of lead, pours them into ingots before further liquefying to produce lead components (including lead plates) of batteries.

where to dispose car battery for free

What Companies Recycle The Old Battery? 

 Many people are recycling their old car batteries within America, as the EPA reports 98% of lead-acid batteries. You can join the multitude of persons who recycle old vehicle batteries and even reap from car battery recycling for cash, as some facilities offer.

Below are the top firms that work on recycling batteries.


This Canadian-based company is renowned for battery recycling and works effectively recycling lithium-ion batteries. This firm employs both hydro-metallurgical resources recovery and mechanical size reduction techniques, which seem like a safe means of processing these batteries with little greenhouse gas emissions.

Since the inception of this establishment in 2016, Li-Cycle Corp has been up and doing and has emerged as one of the top EV battery recycling firms. This company further claims to recycle batteries, bypassing the smelting process and employing leaching in recovering over 95% of basic constituents in lithium-ion batteries. Thus, this can be an excellent option for your electric car battery disposal.

Redwood Materials

Redwood Materials is a company founded in 2017, which handles the reclaiming of scrap batteries. This Nevada-based firm effectively recycles battery materials, saving the environment from potential damages.

This marque aims to generate a circular (closed) loop supply chain by retrieving, reclaiming, recycling, and recirculating cobalt, nickel, copper, and other materials from end-of-life batteries.

Using pyrometallurgy and hydrometallurgy, Redwood removes unwanted organic substances from batteries and dissolves the functional metals into solutions for further use.

Global Battery Alliance

GBA is the World Economic Forum that works on achieving a responsible and sustainable battery value chain. With a flagship program geared towards battery recycling, this alliance source and manages batteries across their full lifecycle. 

This public-private organization collaboration concludes that one practical means of achieving the climate goal of the Paris Agreement’s 1.5C is through a circular battery value chain within the power and transport sectors. 


ACCUREC is a technology company that expects a future without tons of unnecessary battery wastage. Thus, this company further encourages the reuse of batteries via the circular economy approach. 

This firm services, upgrades, and recycles batteries and further increases access to energy solutions worldwide. Hence, ACCUREC has facilities that recycle nickel-cadmium batteries and lithium batteries.

ReCell Center

This initiative collaborates with the US Department of Energy, national laboratories, and the “academia” industry. ReCell Center works on improving and recycling batteries, engaging wonderful techniques.

This recycler recovers high-value materials and designs processes that hone yields, cost, and productivity.


Is it OK to dispose of a car battery?

It is pretty safe to handle sealed batteries, but they pose a significant risk to health and the environment if you dispose of them alongside household wastes. Car batteries often possess various constituents, including metals that appear hazardous.

Thus, you have to be cautious in getting rid of your scrap vehicle batteries. You can get yours dropped off at any hazardous waste facility close by or search for a “car battery disposal near me.” You can find many battery retailers taking your old batteries, and you can make some cool money when you drop yours with them.

What’s the best way to store an old battery?

Old battery storage should be in a cool and dry place and stored at room temperature. Again, keep the battery upright in a place with relatively low humidity. If you consider moving the battery to a facility for recycling, ensure you transport it correctly.

Once you remove the battery from your car, get it into a heavy-duty plastic bag to safely contain potential leaks as you take it to the recycling plant.

What way is best to transport a car battery?

It is pretty challenging transporting a car battery, but you can make this task fun and safe by doing these:

  • Kindly ensure you place the car battery within a fiberboard or metal container that is leak-proof to prevent acid or alkali leaks.
  • Get the encased battery into another cardboard box that is strong enough to hold it.
  • Then, ensure you transport the battery in an upstanding position.

Does Walmart take your old car battery?

Walmart accepts a wide range of decrepit batteries, ranging from car to household batteries. This retailer also has a core battery charge program that initiates the return of old car batteries to recycle them. 

So, while customers go to this retail store to get a new battery replacement for their cars, they can drop off their old batteries and receive a core charge refund of $50-$20 cash of store credit.

Does AutoZone take your old car battery?

AutoZone has a convenient option for disposing of old batteries, as car owners can drop off their scrap batteries and get a gift for doing so. You would get a gift card for every battery you drop off at AutoZone.

Furthermore, this auto part store offers core credit for the old batteries you drop off and would be credited from the cost of new replacement batteries you get from them. You can rest assured that AutoZone would work well on recycling these batteries appropriately.

Does AutoZone offer money for old batteries?

AutoZone is an auto part store that allows folks to ditch their old batteries with them and other gifts for doing so. A renowned offer is the AutoZone battery recycling 10 dollar gift, as expressed on their battery recycling page, which is a fair incentive from this company as folks gear towards recycling their old batteries.

Where can I recycle car batteries?

Various battery recycling companies worldwide work on reclaiming car batteries and reducing likely hazards to the environment. Thus, some of the top battery recycling companies include Redwood Materials, Li-Cycle, ACCUREC, ReCell Center, and Global Battery Alliance.

Does O’Reilly pay for old batteries?

O’Reilly is a renowned auto part store and supplier of various auto parts and products like the O’Reilly oil. Nevertheless, you can drop off your old batteries at this auto store rather than leave them lying around your garage. 

The impressive news is that you get paid for doing so, as you would receive a $10 gift card from this store. And, O’Reilly would work towards recycling these car batteries.

Are dead car batteries worth anything?

Whether or not working, old car batteries are worth a lot, depending on the metal content of the battery. You can reap some cash from the market valuing of scrap batteries, ranging from lead to lithium.

If you decide on dropping off car batteries for recycling, you can get $5-$8, or even more from each scrap battery.

Who pays more for old car batteries?

Some municipalities handle the disposal of various hazardous elements, and you can dump your old car batteries with them. However, you cannot expect this option to pay you for your effort.

Not to worry, some options that can earn you money include local auto stores, auto repair stores, scrap yards, Craigslist, pawnshops, and metal recycling centers. Dropping off your scrap batteries at these locations mentioned above would ensure you get some cool cash.

Final Words

Improper dumping of car batteries is not acceptable, much more with the legislations passed against the dumping of batteries in trash across various states in the US. Thus, most drivers and car owners are keen on learning how to dispose of car batteries properly. 

Car battery recycling is a brilliant move and goes a long way in reclaiming useful battery constituents while keeping the environment safe. So, rather than keeping your batteries littered around your garage, follow the expert advice explained within this write-up on where to drop off scrap batteries for recycling.


Hi there, I am R. Hasan Tito, a mechanic, and owner of this website. My friend and I created this website to share our knowledge, expertise, and experience with our fellow mechanics' community and car users. I am a specialist and certified automotive mechanic (Both Heavy Commercial and Private Cars). I worked as a Mechanic and Mechanic Supervisor for over fifteen years at Global Rebound Automotive companies - Toyota, TATA, BMW, Nissan, TVs, and Others. Now, I enjoy my new role of leading a team of automotive experts (in their respective fields) and publish new content on a regular basis on my website and social media.

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