Mercury Minimization / Mercury-Containing Manometers/Barometers & Mercury Gas Flow Regulators

Description: Manometers and barometers are used for measuring air pressure.

How to Identify: All these devices will have a gauge for reading air pressure.

Amount of Mercury: Varies. Typically 100 - 500 grams. Can be more.

Alternative Devices: Aneroid and electronic manometers, analog gauges (also known as vacuum gauges).

How to Locate the Device: Typically found mounted on walls in medical facilities (for measurement of blood pressure), in dairy barns (attached to a milking machine), and in a variety of industrial operations. Mechanics shops have mercury-containing carburetor synchronizers, multi-column manometers used by mechanics who service motorcycle engines and outboard motors.

Safe Removal: To safely remove the manometer or barometer, remove the entire device from the machine it is attached to. Do not tip, because some manometers will spill mercury when tipped.

Safe Disposal: Put the entire unit upright into an airtight, labeled container. Consult a mercury recycler about how to ship the device to the recycler.

(NOTE: If a manometer is present, look for containers of elemental mercury to refill the manometer.)

Gas Flow Regulators

Description: Some homes that were built prior to 1961 contain a mercury regulator attached to the gas meter. This device does not create a spill risk while in service, but some mercury spills have occurred during removal.

How to Identify: The mercury regulator is attached to the gas meter.

Amount of Mercury: Roughly 100 grams.

Safe Removal: Only qualified gas company personnel should remove these devices. Contact the local gas company to ensure proper removal of these devices in homes that are to be demolished. In other homes, contact the gas company so that they will be aware of the presence of the mercury device and remove it properly when the meter needs to be replaced.