Batteries are becoming more efficient and power an increasing number of electronics, energizing everything from remote controls and toys to radios and flashlights. The Safe Electricity program reminds consumers to be safe when storing, using and disposing of batteries.
Always read the manufacturer’s instructions. Use the correct size and type of battery needed for each device, and be sure to insert batteries with the positive and negative terminals properly aligned.
Store batteries in a dry, secure location that is kept at normal room temperature. Batteries could leak if exposed to extreme heat.
Batteries that are easy to access can be hazardous when they are within the reach of small children. Be sure to store them in a safe location. Check the covers of devices’ battery compartments to ensure that they’re closed and functioning properly to prevent children from accessing them.
Some batteries, such as button batteries, are quite small and could be mistaken for pills or candy. Hearing-aid batteries are particularly small. Do not place them anywhere near where medicine or food is stored.
The consumption of batteries by children is a serious safety concern. A swallowed battery could get stuck or cause tissue burns or other damage to the esophagus. If someone is suspected to have swallowed a battery of any kind, immediately call 911.
Remember to promptly remove and safely dispose of dead batteries. Some dead batteries have been known to leak, so it is best to safely dispose of them right away.
Do not mix old and new batteries in any device because doing so could cause battery leakage or rupture. It’s best to replace all the batteries at the same time.
Rechargeable, lithium, lithium ion and zinc air batteries should be recycled. Get into a habit of putting old batteries in a plastic bag that can be sealed and delivered to a battery recycling center. To find a facility near you, visit call2recycle.org.