Lead acid batteries are most commonly used in cars. However, they are also used extensively for power storage and battery backup systems such as computer uninterruptable power supplies. Sealed lead acid batteries are used in many applications such as emergency lighting, security alarms, portable tools and consumer electronics.
Used lead acid batteries (ULAB) can not be placed in normal waste bins as the lead and acid may contaminate other materials.
Larger industrial lead acid batteries are used as backup power supplies in many situations including storing the energy capture by solar panels.
These batteries are broken apart in a hammer mill in an Australian facility. The broken battery pieces are then placed in a vat where the lead falls to the bottom and plastic materials float. At this point the polypropylene pieces are collected and the liquid is drawn off, leaving the lead. Each of these materials goes into a different recycling stream for further refining and processing.
Why it’s important to recycle lead acid batteries
Lead is a major environmental contaminant, and sulphuric acid represents a personal safety hazard. It’s critical that lead acid batteries are properly recycled.
Fortunately, because of their relative simplicity and the value of the lead they contain, ULABs are the most recycled type of battery worldwide. In many countries the recycling rate exceeds 90%. All components – lead, sulphuric acid and the plastic casing – can be recovered and recycled.
Safely storing lead acid batteries for collection
A recycling process that incorporates the safe handling of ULABs to protect against damage and spills is of the utmost importance. ULABs are often stacked on pallets for transport, and nylon or plastic strapping must be used to ensure no shorts occur across terminals.
Start recycling lead acid batteries today
Ecocycle is dedicated to the safe recycling of all battery types. To talk to one of our experts, call us on 1300 32 62 92 or fill in the form below: