TRC’s Frequently Asked Questions: Part II
Posted August 5, 2020
This past spring, I posted a blog that addressed many of the questions sent to TRC. Unsurprisingly, we placed those questions under the heading of FAQs. Then, while mulling over a topic for my next blog, it occurred to me that we still had a plethora of questions that remain unanswered. These questions make up the bulk of our frequently asked questions, Part II. I should add that if you have any questions that we haven’t addressed, please reach out to us for an answer.
- Can I recycle mercury thermometers with you? TRC doesn’t accept mercury thermometers. However, we have more than 3,400 sites, sponsored by our partners, that are happy to receive your mercury thermostat. Just visit www.thermostat-recycle.org and enter your ZIP code for the nearest drop-off location and directions.
- Can I recycle light bulbs and lamps with you? Unfortunately, we only recycle mercury thermostats.
- Do I have to pay to recycle my mercury thermostat with you? TRC assumes all recurring shipping and processing costs for thermostats collected through the program. You do not have to pay anything if you are dropping off a mercury thermostat at our collection sites.
- Can I recycle at an HVAC wholesaler if I am not a contractor? Yes. All you have to do is visit a wholesaler that partners with us and drop off the thermostat in the green bin.
- Is there a rebate for recycling my mercury thermostat? There are no rebates for recycling mercury thermostats except in California, Maine and Vermont.
- Do I recycle just the mercury ampule or the whole thermostat? We prefer that you drop off the entire thermostat, and our recycling center will dismantle it safely. However, if the mercury ampule has already been cut from the thermostat housing, please contact us and we can assist you with the proper recycling method.
- Why shouldn’t I throw my mercury thermostat in the trash? Sometimes people in our industry joke about playing with mercury. It is an element that cannot be destroyed. Conclusive studies show that mercury is dangerous to the health of humans and animals.
- What happens to the mercury? We ship all mercury thermostats to our recycling center in Port Washington, Wisconsin. There, recycling experts separate the mercury-filled ampules from the rest of the unit. The center then stores the mercury in specially designed containers awaiting shipment to a final resting place dictated by the government. The center then recycles the remainder of the thermostat unit.