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Batteries not included? Keep your home essentials powered up

We all know the drill – you're settling into a cozy evening at home, and suddenly, the remote control or smoke detector starts acting up. Yep, it's the classic "low battery" alert. So, we’re here to remind you about 5 common household items that demand a regular dose of battery TLC.

Hands connecting a battery to a smoke detector

1. Smoke and carbon monoxide detectors

Let's kick things off with the real household heroes – smoke detectors and carbon monoxide detectors. These little guys are the unsung guardians of our homes, always on the lookout for signs of trouble. But guess what? They need their batteries changed! We recommend switching them out when Daylight Saving Time starts and ends. It's a small price to pay for your safety — plus it ensures that irritating chirping won't ruin your beauty sleep.

2. TV remotes and gadgets 

Ever been in the middle of a gripping TV show, only to have your remote go on strike? It's like it knows the most inconvenient time to stop working. Keep those movie nights drama-free by swapping out remote control batteries as soon as the remote stops reacting as quickly as normal. And while you're at it, check your other gadgets too – from gaming controllers to digital thermometers, they all need a little juice to keep things running smoothly.

A flashlight and batteries

3. Flashlights for power outages (or ghost stories)

Power outages are no fun, but a good flashlight can turn a potential disaster into an adventure. Whether you're finding your way to the fuse box or telling ghost stories during a blackout, flashlights are a must. So, don't forget to refresh those batteries, and maybe stash a few extras around the house. You never know when you'll need to play hero in the dark. 

4. Wireless doorbells

Ding-dong! Who's there? Hopefully not a dead doorbell battery. Those handy wireless doorbells may be cord-free, but they're not magic. Test them monthly, and if there’s any delay or sound differences in the ring, it’s time to change out the batteries in both the button and the chime inside. That way, you'll always know when it's pizza delivery time.

5. Thermostats

Smart thermostats have revolutionized how we control our home climate, but they're not immune to the battery bug. If the readout isn’t holding the temperature where you want it, keep those cozy winter nights and breezy summer days on track by swapping out those thermostat batteries. It's the secret to a house that's always the perfect temperature – and who doesn't want that?

A variety of batteries in a recycling bin

How to dispose of batteries

We all have that drawer – you know the one – filled with old batteries collected over time. Sure, they've powered our remotes, flashlights, and countless gadgets, but now they're just sitting there, causing a case of the "battery blues". So, how can we bid them a green farewell? Here are a few convenient options to ensure that your batteries are handled responsibly:

  • Recycling: Not sure where to recycle batteries? Many local recycling centers and big box stores have designated bins for used batteries where you can drop them off.
  • E-Waste programs: Many communities have electronic waste (e-waste) collection programs where you can drop off your old batteries, along with other electronic devices. Your local city or county government offices should know where they are. 
  • Electronics retailers or manufacturers: Some offer take-back programs or participate in e-waste recycling initiatives.
  • Online options: Websites like Earth911 or the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) often provide search tools for locating recycling centers.

Keeping your home essentials powered up doesn’t have to be a chore. It’s more like a little act of love for the things that make our lives easier. So, grab some batteries, make a date with your household devices, and keep the good vibes flowing in your home sweet home!