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Missoula Valley Water Quality District
(406) 258-4890
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Missoula Valley Water Quality District

Department: Water Quality District
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Water Quality District - Hazardous Waste


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Batteries

Automotive Batteries

What Makes Them Dangerous?

Automobiles, boats, tractors, and some toys contain wet-cell batteries, which contain lead and a solution of sulfuric acid. When activated, the electrolyte solution in the battery may produce explosive gases. Manufacturers of batteries containing sulfuric acid must label the battery to warn the consumer of the dangers from battery acid and accumulated gases. Sulfuric acid is caustic. Fumes can irritate respiratory tract and skin and eye contact can cause burns.

Disposal Options

Dispose:

Recycle:

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Button Batteries

What Are They?

What Makes Them Hazardous?

Button batteries may contain silver, lithium, zinc, lead, mercury, nickel, cadmium, and electrolytes. If batteries leak or explode, the chemical substances contained in these batteries can cause burns and/or contaminate the environment.
The heavy metals contained in button batteries may accumulate in aquatic life, animals, and humans.

Disposal Options

All button batteries must be recycled, except alkaline button batteries purchased after 2/1/92.

Recycle:

Dispose:

Non-Rechargeable Batteries

What Are They?

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What Makes Them Hazardous?

Non-rechargeable batteries may contain silver, lithium, alkaline, and electrolytes. Lithium batteries have the potential to create a spark if stored with other metal objects which could result in an explosion and/or fire.

Safety Notes

Disposal Options

Dispose

Trash: The following batteries are safe to put in your trash:

Recycle:

Rechargeable Batteries

What Are They?

Rechargeable batteries are also called lead-acid or gel cell (non automotive), nickel cadmium, lithium ion, and nickel metal hydride. These batteries are often used in video cameras, cellular phones, cordless phones, flashlights, power tools, clocks, portable computers, home security systems, weed trimmers, wheelchairs, appliances, camcorders, pagers, and toys.

What Makes Them Hazardous?

Rechargeable batteries may contain lithium, nickel cadmium, lead, and other metals. Nickel cadmium, commonly referred to as Ni-Cads, and lithium batteries have the potential to create a spark if stored with other metal objects which could result in an explosion and/or fire. Lead-acid batteries can cause serious burns if the seal cracks allowing the acid to leak out.

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Safety Notes

Disposal Options

Dispose

Trash:

Recycle:

The Residential Disposal Guide is provided by the Missoula Valley Water Quality District as a public service and is not an endorsement of specific businesses, services or products. Any omissions or inaccuracies are unintentional. Please contact us with corrections or additions. Call businesses or agencies to confirm hours, locations and charges for services, if any. For information on disposal of items not listed, email or call the Water Quality District at 406-258-4890, M - F, 8 am to 5 pm.

Much of the information provided is from the Washington County, MN, Dept. of Public Health and Environment website.

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