Button Cell Batteries

Alternative ways to recycle
Illegal in Garbage & Drains
Contains Mercury
Hazardous Waste Special Instructions

Batteries must be disposed of as household hazardous waste.  Tape the terminals and secure in a clear zip-top bag

Household batteries both Alkaline and Lithium may be dropped off at the following City Facilities:
City of Santa Cruz Public Works Dept. | 809 Center Street, Room 201
City of Santa Cruz Municipal Utilities Customer Service Office | 212 Locust Street
City Hall | Locust Street parking lot, trash enclosure battery receptacle
Louden Nelson Community Center | 301 Center Street
Resource Recovery Facility | 605 Dimeo Lane

Retail Locations:

O’Reilly Auto Parts | 411 May Avenue

Outdoor World | 136 River Street


Never Throw in the Trash

Button batteries sometimes contain mercury. Even if they don’t, they are banned from the trash because they contain other toxic and corrosive chemicals. Dispose of them as hazardous waste.

Alternative Ways to Recycle


Best Buy's Electronics and Appliances Recycling Program

Best Buy will take back rechargeable batteries as well as the following: battery backups (ups), button batteries, cellphone batteries and laptop batteries. They do not accept single-use, car or other wet cell batteries. Find out more.

The Battery Solutions Recycling Program

Battery Solutions offers battery recycling kits and services to businesses, municipalities and residences. Their programs aim to help people recycle their batteries properly and conveniently. Learn more.

The Big Green Box Battery Recycling Program

The Big Green Box is a mail-in battery recycling program for both residences and businesses. Their system is simple: order a box, fill it up with your used batteries and then ship it back to the company’s EPA-approved recycling center. Learn more.

Did You Know?

Why Is Mercury Still in Batteries?

Mercury is included in batteries for a reason: It’s used as a stabilizer and gives batteries a longer life. In 1996, the Mercury Containing and Rechargeable Battery Management Act prohibited the sale of mercury-oxide batteries in the U.S., except for select applications.