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Is dad purging his tool collection to make way for new? Make sure old batteries hit the correct recycling bin 

(June 7, 2023)—Father’s Day is coming, and power tools are always a popular gift for dads. He might even be getting some replacement tools for old ones that are past their prime. It’s likely these new tools will have advanced battery systems that aren’t compatible with tools of the past, which means dad will have to dispose of his old batteries.

There’s more to battery disposal than you (or dad) might be aware. The Power Tool Institute, the leading industry association, reminds you that the only proper method of disposal is to recycle old batteries. Federal law even requires that lithium-ion batteries (and others) be recycled in the proper way, not thrown away. Violations carry heavy fines. In addition, 29 states have their own battery recycling laws. (To see how your state handles battery disposal, visit Keep in mind that states without their own laws are still governed by the federal recycling law.

Luckily, recycling a lithium-ion battery isn’t as hard as you might think. Most big-box hardware chains have recycling bins specially designated for lithium-ion batteries. These bins are often located right by the entrance for easy access. Simply follow the preparation instructions on the bin, place the prepared battery in the bin, and the recycler does the rest. 

Why can’t lithium-ion batteries just go in the trash? While lithium-ion batteries are a safe energy source to power tools, when batteries are mixed with regular trash, they can be broken, punctured, exposed to chemicals, or suffer other damage during the transport and processing of household trash. This damage may result in a fire that can be challenging to put out. Negative outcomes are easily avoided by properly recycling a lithium-ion battery.

So, make it a happy Father’s Day – and keep dad safe – by properly recycling old power tool batteries.

For more battery safety tips from the Power Tool Institute, visit