HVAC Products Containing Mercury and Proper Disposal
HVAC Products Containing Mercury and Proper Disposal - Mercury is extremely harmful to the environment and causes severe health problems in humans and animals. For many years HVAC and HVAC Controls manufacturers have used mercury in switches.

Mercury is a liquid metal and provides a good source used in many switches because of its fluidity and conductivity. From thermostats to boiler controls the liquid metal provides a reliable and efficient switching mechanism to start and stop certain sequences in HVAC applications.

Products Containing Mercury and the Environment including new State Laws & Regulations and pending legislation

HVAC Products Containing Mercury and Proper Disposal

Because it is very harmful to the environment and because many people do not know it is harmful or they are irresponsible and improperly dispose of products containing mercury some States have come up with laws regulating products that contain mercury or there is pending legislation banning the sale and use of products which contain this substance.

Manufacturers have alternative methods to control HVAC applications and have taken steps to decrease the production of making products that contain this substance and increase production of replacement controls especially for the States where there is current or pending legislation.

Liquid Silver Like Substance = Mercury

It is important if you replace your thermostat to check to see if it has mercury before throwing it in the trash. If you see a little oval bulb with a silver liquid inside the bulb you have a thermostat that contains mercury. It is important to properly dispose of this part of your thermostat which contains mercury. Other HVAC controls which contain mercury are boiler controls, especially on steam boiler systems.

It is improbable that the typical homeowner or business owner will replace this control if it malfunctions but maintenance personnel and HVAC and boiler technicians should be aware of these new laws and the fact that mercury harms the environment so that they properly dispose of any product which contains mercury.

At the end of the usable life of a product which contains mercury the products which contain mercury must be recycled or disposed of in accordance with Local, State, and Federal Regulations so that the mercury in these products does not harm the environment.

Please refer to your individual state laws and regulations to determine specific requirements for the disposal of any products containing mercury. Never put products that contain mercury in the trash. Call your local refuse or Disposal Company or the State Environmental Protection Agency and ask how to properly dispose of products that contain mercury.

HVAC Products Containing Mercury and Proper Disposal – States with Current or Pending Legislation Banning the Sale or Distribution of Products which Contain Mercury*


StateEffective Date
CaliforniaJuly 1, 2006
ConnecticutJuly 1, 2004
IllinoisJuly 1, 2007
LouisianaJanuary 1, 2007
MaineJuly 1, 2006
MassachusettsMay 1, 2008
MinnesotaAugust 1, 2007
New YorkJanuary 1, 2008
Rhode IslandJanuary 1, 2006
VermontJanuary 1, 2007

For a comprehensive updated list of state laws concerning mercury click here.

HVAC Products Containing Mercury and Proper Disposal *If your State is not listed check your Local, State, and Federal regulations for laws pertaining to the sale, distribution, use, and disposal of products that contain mercury. Many state, local, and even private waste disposal facilities have special collection methods for products that contain mercury. As noted, mercury is highly toxic to humans and other life. Therefore, be responsible and dispose of mercury-containing products properly.

Many states have banned the sale of thermostats that contain mercury. For a comprehensive list of states that ban the sale of thermostats with mercury and more on recycling your old thermostat see this site.

HVAC Products Containing Mercury and Proper Disposal

HVAC Products Containing Mercury and Proper Disposal