Best Places To Recycle Your Old Car Batteries For Cash

Recycling has become widely embraced by many consumers worldwide, which is a disposal method every car battery owner needs to imbibe. Most people do not know how to dispose of their batteries and do it wrong, e.g., trashing, ocean disposal, improper storage or abandonment, etc. Do you know you can recycle your old batteries and get paid for them? Find out how in this article. 

What Is Recycling?

Recycling is simply collecting used materials that could have been thrown away and processing them into new usable products. Recycling is beneficial to the users and the environment in the following ways; 

  • It preserves natural resources.
  • Reduces pollution- land pollution, water pollution. 
  • Reduces greenhouse gas emissions into the atmosphere
  • Contributes to innovative creations
  • Creates  more jobs 
  • Reduces wastage 
  • Helps community members contribute to environmental change  
  • Preserves  the quality of the Earth 
car battery recycling

Why Should You Recycle Batteries? 

For companies and the government to encourage recycling batteries so much as to reward people for it, it must be something worthy of note. This is because batteries are toxic to the environment because of the chemicals used. Even small-sized batteries like flashlight batteries, toy batteries, and the ones that power small household appliances are not safe for the surroundings. 

Improper disposal of batteries, such as throwing them in the street or the trash, can harm the soil with the battery acid. It is also risky to keep a battery around because of fire outbreaks due to its electrical and acid components. Also, dumping it in the ocean affects the biological activities in the water, killing fish and seafood. In the long run, the water is polluted, we do not have enough fish to consume, and the available ones are full of toxins. The water becomes undrinkable, and the flooding tendency is higher because the waterways are blocked with chemicals and the plastic casing of the battery. Inappropriate dumping might seem small to an individual, but if all the owners decide to dispose of their old batteries the wrong way, at the time, it will send the Earth into a polluted state. 

Recycling centers and companies have made it easier for you to dispose of a battery properly for recycling. These centers ensure the battery is broken down safely and disposed of, and its reusable parts are used in creating new products or batteries. 

How To Recycle Your Car Battery And Get Cash For It

As you have read, there are centers and companies happy to collect your old battery for recycling, and they are also willing to pay you for it. Here are ways to recycle your battery in exchange for cash; 

  • From where you purchased the battery
  • Auto Parts stores
  • Local auto repair shops 
  • Selling as scraps to junk and scrap yards
  • Selling to pawn shops 
  • Companies with recycling plans
  • Recycling centers
  • Online marketplaces
  • Put it up for sale 

1 – Returning To Purchase Store

You make a deposit called a battery core charge when you buy a battery. This is an amount of money you put down on the purchased battery, and when you return the battery to the same store for recycling, you can claim the cashback. Over 30 states in America are mandated to place a core charge on every battery bought.  

Some stores return a part of the purchase price via the core refund program as an incentive for returning your old battery. Stores like Advance Auto Parts do the core refund program. When returning your car battery to Advance Auto Parts, ensure to bring the receipt or packing slip to claim your refund for recycling. However, not all stores give a core charge or refund, but they offer credit on your next battery purchase from their store. 

2 – Auto Parts Stores 

The price of the battery depends on the type, the brand, and what it looks like, including the extent of damage it has. One of the easiest and quick ways to get paid for recycling your old car battery is by going to an auto parts store such as AutoZone or Advance auto parts. You can even negotiate prices with them if they pay cash or get some credit on your next purchase from their store. 

Auto Zone can pay between $6 and $8. You can also get a $10 gift card towards your next purchase from the store, be it another battery or anything else. Ensure to call ahead to know the terms and conditions before setting out to any auto parts store. 

damaged old car battery

3 – Local Auto Repair Shop 

Auto repair shops will gladly take your old car battery because there are a couple of things they can use it for. If your battery is in a manageable condition when you drop it, they can resell it at a lower price than new batteries to customers who cannot afford or want a new battery. Some auto repair shops can refurbish the battery if it needs some brushing up to make it presentable for sale.  

Some accept damaged batteries and gather them for recycling, but if they do not accept your battery due to damage, do not worry, there are other alternatives. 

4 – Selling To A Junkyard Or Scrap Yard. 

This is a better option if your battery is defective. Junk yards collect defective batteries and good ones as well. They collect batteries mainly for their lead core. Lead is one of the most recycled items in the world because it can be remanufactured and used again. 

Scrap yards are very common in neighborhoods. Ask around or do a google search for scrap yards near you. They collect old refrigerators, appliances, steam irons, etc. You can also take your other old appliances and sell them all at once to make a better buck. Another similar place to sell your battery is at a foundry. Search online for a list of foundries and go to the one closest to you. Foundries are more likely to pay more for batteries.

Batteries are priced according to how much lead it contains and the current lead per pound rate. For example, if the lead is 0.33 cents per pound and the core weighs about 21 pounds, you will get paid $7. 

5 – Selling To Pawn Shops. 

Pawnshops will accept almost anything in good condition or considered usable in exchange for cash. Although, they do not pay as much as most other recycling options because they are middlemen. That means that your battery remains with them until they find an actual buyer for it. 

6 – Companies With Recycling Options 

Various companies and stores make it a point to facilitate recycling. Here are some companies that  can help you recycle your battery and reward you for submitting it;

  • Walmart: Most Walmart AutoCenters conduct recycling programs for customers. In exchange for the battery, you either get credit for your next purchase or a core charge return of what you paid before. Make sure to go along with your receipt to verify your purchase. 
  • GlobalTech Environmental: this company mainly works with companies because there is a minimum weight of batteries they collect for recycling. They also recycle other items like computers, electronics like UPSs, LCD monitors, old phones, etc. Before proceeding with them, it is best to give them a call to request a recycling quote. 
  • United Battery: they run a program called Cash for Junk Batteries, where you can recycle your battery for good pay. It is limited to Portland, Oregon, Longview, and Washington. According to their website, they pay well for lead-acid batteries. They recycle automotive batteries for cars, trucks, lawn mowers, etc., and industrial batteries for forklifts, telecoms, industrial motives, etc 
  • iScrap App: this smartphone app helps you locate scrap yards around you. You can schedule a pickup with some scrap yards on the app.  
  • Pull-A-Part: they have locations in about 12 states around the country, particularly in the east and west. Call or stop by the nearest location, and they will offer a free quote and pickup. 
  • Peddle: Peddle collects used car junk for sale, including components like the battery. Go to the website and fill in the correct specifications, get a quote, and they will come to you for pickup, giving you a check on the spot. 
  • Yellow Pages: check out any yellow pages you may have stashed away at home, and check for “Recycling center” programs. Then do a google search for available payment programs for old batteries. You may find more centers and programs like the above around you.
old car batteries

7 – Recycling Centers  

There are designated centers in communities that collect old batteries, break them down and separate the lead to reuse and make new batteries. They might offer a better price compared to scrap yards. However, recycling centers may vary in their operations, in that some sell to direct buyers, hence paying you for recycling. Others may not pay, but it is good to give them regardless as it helps the environment and saves money on a new lead. Finding recycling centers is easy, simply go online and google, then place a call to confirm their terms and conditions. 

 8 – Online Marketplaces

There are marketplaces online where you can put up your old battery for sale. Such as;

  • Craigslist: you can list your old battery on craigslist, find a buyer and negotiate the sales price. Use keywords that will make your listing visible to others and easy to find, and verify the buyer before making the sale.
  • Facebook marketplace: Facebook is a great place to get things off your stock fast. With a good photo and caption continuing your contact details, you can have buyers calling in in no time. You can post on the app marketplace or list the battery on group chats and pages like garage sales groups, scrap groups, used items groups, and the like. Make sure to take clear pictures and mention any defects potential buyers need to be aware of in your post. 
  • eBay: eBay is another great website to list your used battery. Put it up with clear pictures and details. The shipping cost might be high, so it is best to list the item as “pick up only” so the delivery fees do not eat into your money. 

9 – Put It Up For Sale 

You can sell your battery through; yard sales or newspaper advertisements. 

  • Having a yard sale: Someone in your neighborhood might need your old battery, and the way to get them to buy it is to have a yard sale or let your neighbors know by mouth that you have an old battery to sell-off. Talking to every neighbor is not easy. Therefore, a yard sale sign can do that for you. You are likely to make more money this way than selling to middlemen.
  • Newspaper ad: people still read newspapers today, and you can run an ad in your local newspaper. Due to ad costs, it is best to do this if you have batteries in bulk. Also, you can check for ads from scrap yards and put a call in to sell to them or have them middle man for you.

Safety Tips For Recycling 

Exercise caution when recycling your batteries or preparing them for proper disposal;

  • Always handle the battery with safety gear on. Since batteries contain acid, there is a risk of it spilling if the case is burst. Handle batteries while wearing safety gloves and goggles. 
  • Avoid storing the batteries in high-temperature environments. Keep the battery away from heat and fire. The electrical and chemical makeup of a battery makes it susceptible to fire if not handled properly. 
  • Observe the case for leakages. If the plastic casing is weak or cracked, find a way to block it to prevent leaks and avoid submitting a messy battery for recycling.

Final Thoughts 

You are highly encouraged to dispose of your old car battery correctly and encourage others to do the same. There is hardly any excuse for the incorrect disposal seeing the available and convenient recycling options to choose from. Also, maintaining your battery when in use will give you a better valuation when it is time to recycle it. 

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