Dismantling EV batteries

Making electric vehicles green means making sure that the batteries are taken care of properly when they reach end of life. But before they can be recycled, re-purposed or given a second-life, EV batteries need to be dismantled. And that's where Sortbat comes in!

What exactly does recycling EV batteries involve?

  • Diagnosis, collecting EV batteries and transporting them to a dismantling centre
  • Dismantling the battery packs and modules into recyclable units, such as battery cells
  • Forwarding the battery cells to recyclers, who use various techniques to extract raw materials
  • Refining the raw materials retrieved so they can be used in new products
  • Second-life: some batteries can be reused (for their original use) or re-purposed (new type of use eg. home energy storage) by specialized parties

Step 1

Before working on the battery

Step 2

Opening the casing

Step 3

Removing the cells and components

Step 4

Recycling or second-life

Before working on the battery

Before we start working on the battery we make sure that the battery has not been moved for three days, and that the temperature of the battery has remained equal to ambient temperature for at least three days. If the battery is unstable, special measures will apply to be decided case by case, they may include deep discharging of the battery before dismantling.

Opening the casing

The operator unscrews the protective case around the battery and removes any adhesive or silicone. Often, there are also electrical components and cables for liquid coolants (cooling) or air (ventilation) that need to be taken away.

Removing the cells and components

In order to reduce the voltage for safe processing the connectors, modules/ cells and other components are gradually removed from the battery pack. Ultimately, all cells and modules are removed. Voltage and temperature measurements are taken before but also during the dismantling process.

Recycling or second-life

Once the battery has been fully dismantled, the battery cells are packed up again. Cells that show no deviation from the ambient temperature can be safely stored. Cells that show a deviation will be stored in a specially secured area that is constantly monitored. All cells are taken to an approved recycler or a second-life provider. We follow the strictest and safest guidelines and ADR regulations for transportation.

Step 1

Before working on the battery

Before working on the battery

Before we start working on the battery we make sure that the battery has not been moved for three days, and that the temperature of the battery has remained equal to ambient temperature for at least three days. If the battery is unstable, special measures will apply to be decided case by case, they may include deep discharging of the battery before dismantling.

Step 2

Opening the casing

Opening the casing

The operator unscrews the protective case around the battery and removes any adhesive or silicone. Often, there are also electrical components and cables for liquid coolants (cooling) or air (ventilation) that need to be taken away.

Step 3

Removing the cells and components

Removing the cells and components

In order to reduce the voltage for safe processing the connectors, modules/ cells and other components are gradually removed from the battery pack. Ultimately, all cells and modules are removed. Voltage and temperature measurements are taken before but also during the dismantling process.

Step 4

Recycling or second-life

Recycling or second-life

Once the battery has been fully dismantled, the battery cells are packed up again. Cells that show no deviation from the ambient temperature can be safely stored. Cells that show a deviation will be stored in a specially secured area that is constantly monitored. All cells are taken to an approved recycler or a second-life provider. We follow the strictest and safest guidelines and ADR regulations for transportation.

Dismantling EV batteries: a skill in its own right

Working with end of life EV batteries, there are a number of risk factors to take in account: overheating, fire, release of gases, instability, short circuit, high voltage... But of course, at Sortbat we don't take this job lightly, and we're fully equipped, trained and prepared for all eventualities!


Dismantling is always customised work for Sortbat. Each job is different, and what the customer wants is imperative.

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