Mercury in Light Bulbs: Minnesota Dept. of Health

Mercury and Light Bulbs

All fluorescent light bulbs contain some mercury. Some other lights also contain mercury:

  • high intensity discharge lamps (mercury vapor, metal halide, sodium)
  • fluorescent backlights in flat panel and liquid crystal displays commonly used as monitors, TVs and instrument displays. 
  • compact fluorescent bulbs

Broken bulbs

When these light bulbs break, some mercury vapor is released to the air. Usually the amount released from one broken bulb is not a health concern.

All mercury-containing lamps should be recycled. In Minnesota, it is illegal to dispose of mercury-containing light bulbs, or other mercury-containing products, in the trash.

For more information, see the MDH Webpage CFLs: General Information and Cleanup.

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Updated Tuesday, July 18, 2017 at 01:12PM