The proper reaction to a battery leak varies based on what type of battery is leaking. Use weak household acids such as vinegar or lemon juice to neutralize the leaks of Alkaline batteries. Clean nickel cadmium batteries with a mixture of baking soda and water.
Wear protective gloves and goggles while attempting to clean up a battery leak of any kind. Place the defective battery in a transparent plastic bag to prevent injuries while identifying the battery type. Alkaline batteries leak potassium hydroxide, a basic solution. Lithium battery leaks are much less common; clean them with water and a cotton towel only. Before attending to the exposed liquid of a lithium battery leak, dispose the battery itself, as it could ignite or explode.