What Happens To All Of The Old Electric Car Batteries?

Front view of a lithium ion EV car Nissan Leaf battery pack exposed view
Gereon Meyer via Wikimedia

Car batteries have been an important part of car owners’ lives for decades – we all have some memory of having to break out the jumper cables, buy a replacement, or something of the sort. Now batteries are much different after evolving over the years. Lithium Ion batteries are the current trend, but there are rumors that they might be being phased out in the near future. With electric cars becoming more popular as time goes on, concerns about how to handle all of those batteries become more valid.

Luckily electric vehicle (EV) battery companies saw the issue coming and were way ahead of the concerns being thrown at them. The recycling plants are often owned and controlled by the same companies that build them. A large percentage of parts that make up the lithium ion batteries come from recycling the old ones.

However, before the batteries get recycled, they are often repurposed. Most people replace their car batteries when they still have a decent amount of charge left in them, so the batteries still have quite a bit of use left if in the right hands. They are often used as power storage on your local or private energy grids. Power plants charge them up during the day, and then the batteries get drained at night. This helps save energy and relieve strain on overloaded stations.

Canary Media

Finally, when the battery is drained of all of its charge after prolonged use, it gets sent to the recycling plant. Hydrometallurgy and other new techniques are used to break the batteries down into separate parts. Those seperate parts are then sorted by type and sent off to be reused as new material. This is environmentally friendly because it cuts back on more mining to get fresh resources. However, it’s not a perfect system.

Pollution is still a factor when it comes to recycling, and batteries are no exception. However, it’s important to note that despite these facts, recycling is still much better for the environment when compared to the cost of emissions and pollution created from using fossil fuels.

Business Insider India

Battery companies have incentive to improve the recycling processes as well because they save more money when they reuse as much of the recycled batteries as possible. The best way to a company’s heart is through it’s pocketbook – the more money at the end of each quarter the better. Recycling combines capitalism with environmentalism in a way that creates a better world for us all – especially our kids.

%d bloggers like this:
search previous next tag category expand menu location phone mail time cart zoom edit close