Hazards

  • Automotive batteries contain sulfuric acid that can burn skin.

Handling

  • Handle batteries with acid resistant or leather gloves.
  • Keep sparks and flames away from batteries and don't smoke nearby.
  • Never place metal objects on top of the battery because it can cause sparks. Remove rings, chains, and other metallic items before handling.
  • Keep batteries right side up.
  • Carry in a non-metallic, leak proof container.
  • If battery leaks, neutralize any spilled acid with baking soda or calcium carbonate (lime). Flush area with water.
  • If acid comes in contact with skin, flush area with water immediately and seek medical attention, if burning continues.

Management Options

  • Do not throw in the trash. Automotive batteries are banned from landfills and combustion facilities in Massachusetts.
  • Most automotive battery retailers will accept your used battery when you purchase a new one.
  • Take to a community recycling center, if available.
  • Take to a service station or repair garage that accepts automotive batteries. Many garages, auto salvage operations, and scrap metal yards will take automotive batteries, provided they are not broken or leaking. Check the Yellow Pages or online for nearest locations.
  • Most municipal household hazardous waste collection events accept automotive batteries.