HVAC Products Containing Mercury and Proper Disposal – Mercury is extremely harmful to the environment and cause 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 which contain mercury or there is pending legislation ban the sale and use of products which contain this substance. Manufacturers have alternative methods to control HVAC applications and have taken steps to decrease production of making products which contain this substance and increase production of replacement controls especially for the States where there is current or pending legislation.

HVAC Products Containing Mercury and Proper Disposal

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 which 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 do not harm the environment.

Please refer to your individual state laws and regulations to determine specific requirements for disposal of any products containing mercury. Never put products which 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 which 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*


State Effective Date
California July 1, 2006
Connecticut July 1, 2004
Illinois July 1, 2007
Louisiana January 1, 2007
Maine July 1, 2006
Massachusetts May 1, 2008
Minnesota August 1, 2007
New York January 1, 2008
Rhode Island January 1, 2006
Vermont January 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 you Local, State, and Federal regulations for laws pertaining to the sale, distribution, use, and disposal of products which contain mercury. Many state, local, and even private waste disposal facilities have special collection methods for products that contain mercury.

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

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