Challenge #32: Rechargeable batteries

Use rechargeable batteries.

Alkaline batteries

“In a battery, I strive to maximize electrical potential. When mentoring, I strive to maximize human potential.”

-Donald Sadoway

Hey, guys!

Since a lot of us buy and receive different toys, gadgets, tools, and appliances that run on batteries during the holiday season, it seemed reasonable for us to come up with a challenge that will cover that issue.

You will probably all agree with us if we say that batteries are awesome. They help make our life a lot easier in many ways. Can you even imagine our lives without batteries – all portable devices suddenly turned into non-portable ones. It would make our life a living hell.

That’s why we should all be grateful to Alessandro Volta, who invented the first true battery way back in 1800. The first battery looked much different than the batteries we know nowadays, but the physics behind its operation was more or less the same.

Why are batteries bad for the environment?

If batteries are not properly recycled they are bad for the environment. The exact composition of chemicals inside a battery varies with the type of battery, but there are certain amounts of cadmium, lead, mercury, nickel, lithium, and electrolytes in every battery. Those metals are dangerous to human health and other living things.  That’s why we must discharge used batteries in a proper way.

Sadly, there are billions of batteries being thrown in the ordinary trash each year. As such they are typically placed somewhere in a landfill and covered with soil. Sooner than later batteries start to leak as a part of a long process of degradation and all of the previously listed metals get into the soil and further into the subterranean waters. It’s no surprise that these very metals eventually get into our potable water supply system.

Recycle batteries

Furthermore, lithium, as being very volatile can cause landfill fires that can burn underground for years. During this process toxic chemicals are being released into the air, causing additional human exposure.

Recycle batteries

To avoid all of the above-mentioned impacts of batteries being trashed the wrong way we must recycle them. There are special recycle bins for batteries that can be found in many cities. Moreover, there are many stores (especially the ones with electronics) that have special boxes where you can throw empty batteries. Then they take care of the recycling for you.

Please, just make sure you never ever throw a battery into the common trash cans.

Why rechargeable batteries?

If you’ll use rechargeable batteries you’ll produce less waste. Also, you won’t have to worry about buying new batteries since you’ll simply recharge the ones you already have. Rechargeable batteries might seem more expensive, however, you’ll actually save money in the long run. There are many different options when it comes to rechargeable batteries and chargers. Here are some top rated suggestions:

Top chargers:

There are also many other options, for instance, we have been using Sunlabz batteries and charger. The batteries and the charger have worked great so far.

Switch to rechargeable batteries

Take-home points:
  • Batteries are bad for the environment and your health if not discharged properly.
  • Recycle batteries.
  • Reduce batteries waste by using rechargeable batteries.


Good Earthlings

4 thoughts on “Challenge #32: Rechargeable batteries

  1. Hi Good Earthling,
    Boy, do I feel bad, yeah I’m guilty of throwing batteries into the waste basket. I guess I never gave it much thought (or I just didn’t want to :() about how bad they are for our environment.
    It’s a shame that we develop things that are bad for the earth if not disposed of properly because as a species we can be a little lazy when it comes to taking care of our environment, (myself included).
    Though I am working on being a lot better at this, so I was wondering what is the best way to discharge a battery before taking it to be disposed of properly? And I think I will be buying rechargeable batteries from now on!
    Thank you for this great article!

    • Hi, Kim!

      It’s really nice to hear from you. It sound like our site is something you could use on your way to becoming more aware about the environment, so your more then welcome to stick around. 😉

      About the used batteries; if you don’t have special bins for them, the best thing you can do is to take them to the nearest technical store and they should take them and make sure they get recycled.

      Warm regards

  2. Hi there,
    I’m a battery junkie and I have so many appliances that requires batteries so I bought myself a whole box of rechargeable batteries along with the charges of course.

    Eneloop’s my favourite but after a year, I think that the batteries don;t really last long. I mean they still work but instead of being able to last a few months on full-recharge, the batteries only last for a month and today, they are starting to last a bout 2-3 weeks only.

    Is it normal for batteries to depreciate or am I doing anything wrong? I would hate to go and buy more batteries, not good for the environment!

    • Well, we don’t know exactly, but to retain batteries capacity you have to fully empty and then fully charge them. Maybe you should try contacting the store where you bought your batteries and ask them if that’s normal. Maybe they’ll give you new ones. It’s worth a try. Good luck. Thank you for caring.

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