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Some types of this item are banned from disposal in the trash in Vermont. For more information, see below.

Disposal Options

Batteries do not belong in the recycling bin. Some batteries are banned from the trash, and all batteries are accepted for special recycling at the District Transfer Station and at several other collection locations in the county and state. The following types of batteries should NEVER be thrown in the trash:

  • Lithium metal (non-rechargeable) batteries are commonly used in cameras. They are potentially reactive and toxic.
  • Button cells are the small, disc-shaped batteries commonly used in hearing aids, medical devices, watches, and calculators.  These usually contain mercury or silver and are therefore considered toxic and are banned from the landfill. Many pharmacies, nursing homes, audiologists, and hearing aid dispensers, also offer free recycling of button cell batteries.
  • Lead acid/wet cell batteries found in cars, motorcycles, and boats contain toxic materials and are banned from the trash.
  • Rechargeable batteries contain toxic material and are banned from the trash:
    • Nickel cadmium (Ni-Cd, or Ni-Cad) batteries are found in power tools, cordless phones, and many other rechargeable appliances.
    • Nickel metal hydride (NiMH) batteries are used in computers, cell phones, camcorders, and other portable devices.
    • Lithium ion batteries are used in cell phones and computers.
    • Small sealed lead acid batteries are found in phone systems, emergency lighting, and battery backup systems.  They’re usually rectangular and heavy, with wires sticking out. 
  • Alkaline and carbon-zinc batteries: Regular household non-rechargeable alkaline batteries and carbon-zinc batteries are not banned from landfill; however, the District Transfer Station accepts them for special recycling, which is far better for the environment. 

To see a breakdown of how Vermont's batteries get recycled, view this video (hyperlink) from Call2Recycle.

Damaged, Defective, or Swollen Batteries

All damaged, defective, and swollen (puffy) batteries should be managed carefully. These items are fire hazards and should never be disposed of in the trash or recycling. If you have a damaged, defective, or swollen battery:

  • Place the battery or device in a closed, water-tight storage container such as a plastic pail or bin. Add sand, vermiculite, or kitty litter as soon as possible.
  • Always wear gloves and eye protection when handling swollen or damaged batteries. Damaged batteries can cause burns or other injuries. 
  • Do not store damaged, defective, or recalled batteries for extended periods. Bring them to the District Transfer Station during operating hours.



  • Wet-cell, automotive: No Charge
  • Small dry-cell, cell phones, rechargeable, button cell, lithium, lithium ion, NiMH, NiCad: No Charge


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