A Guide to Choosing, Storing, Disposing and Recycling of Batteries

A breakdown of battery types, battery maintenance and disposal safety

charging cables
rechargeable batteries

What is a battery? A battery is a store of chemical energy that can be easily inserted and removed from electronic devices, instantly providing the power needed to accomplish a task.

Whether powering household electronics, or essential camera equipment, batteries are as fundamental as they are diverse. With one of the world’s largest range of batteries, GP Batteries has designed and optimised an array of batteries with your needs in mind. Below are a few helpful insights into how to choose the right battery and how to properly  dispose of or recycle them once they have reached the end of their lifespan.

How to choose the right battery

Picking out the right battery type can often be confusing, especially when faced with a variety of options. For example, should you choose single-use or rechargeable batteries? To help you select the right battery, we’ve broken down the essentials you need to know about each battery type.

Alkaline batteries deliver more power.

Preferred for the increasing power demand of everyday devices, our alkaline batteries are a great fit for an array of low to high-drain devices, such as toys, headlamps, game controllers and smoke detectors. That said, not all alkaline batteries are created equal, and performance will vary depending on the device’s drain rating.

Lithium batteries are best suited for extreme temperatures and long use times.

Durable, lightweight yet powerful, Lithium batteries are well-matched for high-tech devices that require prolonged use (e.g. smoke detectors and sensors), high-power input (e.g. photoflashes and portable motor-driven devices) and extreme temperatures (e.g. flashlights in severe cold conditions).

Rechargeable NiMH (Nickel Metal Hydride) batteries offer an eco-friendly charge.

Preferred for the increasing power demand of everyday devices, our alkaline batteries are a great fit for an array of low to high-drain devices, such as toys, headlamps, game controllers and smoke detectors. That said, not all alkaline batteries are created equal, and performance will vary depending on the device’s drain rating.

Voltage is especially important.

When picking out the right battery, voltage is also crucial to consider. That’s because some devices will not operate properly (or will only operate for a short time) if paired with less-than-ideal voltage. Here’s something to remember: While alkaline batteries typically have a nominal voltage of 1.5 volts, rechargeable batteries have 1.2 volts; on the other hand, an alkaline battery will start its initial charge at 1.5 volts before tapering down to 1.2 volts in later charges.

How to maintain a battery: do's and don'ts

So, you’ve purchased the right batteries depending on your personal needs. The next step is to practice proper care and storage for longer battery life – and we’ve put together a few GP-approved dos and don’ts to guide you along the way.

The DOs

  • Do store batteries in a cool, dry place, or ventilated at room temperature and away from direct sunlight.
  • Do keep them away from children to avoid swallowing accidents.
  • Do remove all used batteries from a device at the same time, and replace them with new batteries of the same size and type.
  • Do remove batteries from electronic devices if they will remain unused for a long period of time to avoid battery leakage.

The DON’Ts

  • Don’t subject batteries to adverse conditions, such as extreme temperatures and excessive overcharging.
  • Don’t store batteries with metallic objects such as keyrings and coins to prevent short circuits.
  • Don’t mix old and new batteries (or different types/capacities of batteries) into the same device to avoid ruptures or leakages that may result in personal injury or property damage.
  • Don’t leave battery-powered devices switched on after the batteries are flat/depleted.

How to dispose of old batteries - the right way

Here are three safety tips to keep in mind when properly disposing of your batteries:
The valuable raw material in single-use batteries can be recycled and reused to create new products. Both primary and rechargeable batteries can be taken to recycling stations to ensure the batteries are recycled and saved from the landfill.

To minimize the number of batteries entering our landfills, GP promotes the use of rechargeable batteries as a single rechargeable battery can replace hundreds of single-use batteries. For the disposal of both rechargeable and single-use batteries, we encourage consumers to find a recycling station in their local communities

Safety tip 1

Take caution when grouping used batteries for disposal. Since used batteries are often not completely discharged, this can potentially bring live batteries into contact with each other, creating safety risks. We recommend taping the positive terminal of the battery with protective caps or masking tape. This will ensure the battery type is still identifiable at the recycling centre, while also protecting you from danger. Do not wrap the entire battery to avoid being unrecognisable.

Safety tip 2

When disposing of a leaky battery, make sure to place the affected battery into a non-metal container (to avoid further damage) while avoiding contact with your skin. If there is a battery leakage, quickly wash any part of your skin or object that may have come in contact with the battery acid. Finally, before carefully discarding them in the trash, we suggest placing the damaged batteries into a plastic bag as a safeguard against further acid damage.

Safety tip 3

Small batteries can cause serious internal injury or death if swallowed. It is important to keep batteries safely out of reach from children, especially when it comes to disposing of them. If your child swallows a battery, please seek immediate medical attention.

Why battery recycling is important

To protect the environment and live sustainably, it’s advised to follow the principle of “Reduce, Reuse, Recycle.” This means doing what you can to reduce the amount of waste you produce, reuse items whenever you can, and recycle items that you cannot reuse. In following these ‘Three R’s,’ we can all do our part to minimise waste and environmental damage. When it comes to disposing of batteries, due to hazardous materials, proper recycling is necessary to prevent hazardous waste and harm to the environment.

At GP, we’re committed to developing more sustainable sources of power by working towards zero waste in our battery manufacturing facilities. We’re also constantly looking for new ways to increase the use of recycled materials in our battery products, with many of our rechargeable battery products comprising at least 10% recycled materials.

Now that you know the complete guide to battery types, proper care and storage, battery disposal and recycling steps, you'll save more money on battery replacements and reduce landfill waste. At GP Batteries, we manufacture high-quality batteries, chargers and USB cables to cater for general and specific needs, including batteries for hearing aid devices. We also have our very own eco-friendly rechargeable batteries that are long-lasting and certified with the highest international safety standards.


  1. Choosing the right battery needs to factor in your specific needs and the device’s requirements, the battery type (such as alkaline, lithium-ion or nickel-metal hydride), as well as the battery capacity, voltage and size. Researching and understanding the advantages and limitations of different battery types can help you choose the one that best suits your needs.

  2. To ensure the longevity and optimal performance of a battery, it is crucial to follow proper maintenance practices. Do fully charge the battery before initial use, use the device regularly to avoid long periods of inactivity and store batteries in a cool and dry place. Do not overcharge or undercharge the battery, expose it to extreme temperatures, mix old and new batteries and attempt to disassemble or modify the battery.

  3. When it comes to disposing of old batteries, it is essential to handle them responsibly to prevent environmental harm. Many batteries contain toxic chemicals that can seep into the soil and water if not disposed of correctly. The preferred method of disposal is to recycle batteries at designated recycling centers or drop-off locations. These facilities have the proper infrastructure to handle and recycle batteries safely.

  4. By recycling your batteries, it helps to prevent hazardous materials from ending up in landfills or being released into the environment. Valuable materials like metals can be recovered and reused which reduce the need for new resource extraction. Proper recycling of batteries contributes to minimising pollution, conserving natural resources and promoting a sustainable approach to managing battery waste.