Light Bulbs and Batteries

Light Bulbs

Call Facilities and Campus Services at 336.758.4255 to have fluorescent bulbs replaced. Facilities & Campus Services will replace the bad bulb and make sure it is recycled properly.

If a fluorescent bulb breaks, DO NOT attempt to clean it up. Call Facilities & Campus Services at 336.758.4255 to clean up the broken bulb. Fluorescent bulbs contain small amounts of mercury, which is potentially toxic to humans if inhaled or ingested.

 Mercury-Containing Light Bulb (Lamp) Recycling

Mercury is an essential component of many energy-efficient light bulbs. The two most common types of energy-efficient lighting that contain mercury are:

  • fluorescent bulbs, including compact fluorescent light bulbs (CFLs) and
  • high intensity discharge (HID) bulbs.

Examples of common waste electric lamps include, but are not limited to:

  • fluorescent
  • high intensity discharge
  • neon
  • mercury vapor
  • high pressure sodium
  • metal halide lamps
  • specialty lamps that are used for streetlights, floodlights, parking lots industrial lighting and some automobile headlights

Under federal regulations Wake Forest University is required to manage mercury-containing light bulbs as a hazardous waste after they burn out. Do not throw burned out fluorescent bulbs in the trash.

Standard incandescent bulbs are non-hazardous and can be placed in either regular trash, or a broken glass container.


Many batteries are potentially hazardous if thrown in the trash. Wake Forest University recycles the following types of batteries to comply with federal and state regulations and to keep our environment clean:

  • Lead Acid
  • NiCad (Nickel-Cadmium)
  • Lithium batteries
  • Mercury containing batteries

These can be found in a variety of places, including:

  • Vehicles
  • Alarms
  • Exit Signs
  • Electronic devices (Cell phone, PDA, Radios, Computers)

Many offices have battery recycle containers. If yours does not, just call Facilities and Campus Services to have your battery picked up and recycled.

Non-rechargeable, standard alkaline batteries (AA, AAA, C, D) are not hazardous, and can be placed in regular trash.


Need to report an unsafe condition or incident?

Phone: 336.758.EHAS (3427)
Office Location: The EHS building is in the Facilities Compound on Wingate Road. It is the last building on the left up from Fleet Services, next door to Landscaping.