Rechargable vs alkaline batteries

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Rechargable vs alkaline batteries

Postby imperialman67 » Sat Mar 16, 2013 9:12 am

So in a Bogleheads sort of way which is more cost effective?
I still have my old Radio Shack battery charger, but my rechargeable batteries are wearing out and need replacement.
Kids toys no longer need to be fed ,but there are the remotes,clocks ,etc that still need AA, AAA, and 9v batteries .
Price wise its tempting to just go buy the mega pack of Alkaline batteries at Walmart vs buying Enloop rechargeables, or something similar.
I suppose there is some formula out there of usage vs cost vs lifespan?
Am I over thinking this? :?
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Re: Rechargable vs alkiline batteries

Postby hsv_climber » Sat Mar 16, 2013 9:32 am

It depends on the application.
For your remotes & clocks alkaline batteries are better. But for lights, flashlights, cameras, etc. you have to use rechargeables.
You might also want to take a look into a better charger, since good charger matters.
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Re: Rechargable vs alkiline batteries

Postby DualIncomeNoDebt » Sat Mar 16, 2013 10:05 am

First, get a new charger, try one that comes with Eneloop batteries. If you're a battery nerd, get a MaHa C9000.

Second, we use Eneloops exclusively for everything that takes batteries. Eneloops are worth it if you get them for the right price, we bought a package deal on Amazon. Eneloops last a long time on a single charge, and almost no draining when not in use. Superior to any other rechargeable batteries we've tried.
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Re: Rechargable vs alkiline batteries

Postby midareff » Sat Mar 16, 2013 10:23 am

DualIncomeNoDebt wrote:First, get a new charger, try one that comes with Eneloop batteries. If you're a battery nerd, get a MaHa C9000.

Second, we use Eneloops exclusively for everything that takes batteries. Eneloops are worth it if you get them for the right price, we bought a package deal on Amazon. Eneloops last a long time on a single charge, and almost no draining when not in use. Superior to any other rechargeable batteries we've tried.



+1
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Re: Rechargable vs alkaline batteries

Postby jridger2011 » Sat Mar 16, 2013 11:42 am

I also recommend Eneloop batteries. I have had mine for years and they are still great and in use. The AAA's are good for stuff like wireless mice.
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Re: Rechargable vs alkaline batteries

Postby edglim » Sat Mar 16, 2013 12:08 pm

a good charger and set of rechargeable batteries would last you for years. i've used a maha mh-c204f charger for 8 years and still going strong. for batteries, i use powerex 2700mah aa and 1000mah aaa for all household use (calculators, remote controls, flashlights, wireless mouse/keyboard, clocks, digital camera)

also bought rechargeable 350 mah aaa batteries 2-3 years ago from harbor freight that i use for led bike lights...
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Re: Rechargable vs alkaline batteries

Postby blevine » Sat Mar 16, 2013 12:12 pm

After using mainly eneloop for a long while,
I bought a pack of Lithium AA batteries for my smoke detectors.
Just can't stand the constant beeping when the batter drains, and need to change and charge.

I use the Eneloop still for most devices, just not for smoke detectors.
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Re: Rechargable vs alkaline batteries

Postby lmpmd » Sat Mar 16, 2013 12:36 pm

If it's simply a question of money alkaline batteries wins hands down. Staples frequently has 16 packs for free. Well it does involve rewards so you have to do that rewards system thing - but who can't use their rewards at staples? I'm sure you'll need paper, pens, or computer related stuff and can use the rewards at some point. I have a few packs of 16 AA's and AAA's sitting around that I got for free.
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Re: Rechargable vs alkaline batteries

Postby harikaried » Sat Mar 16, 2013 12:45 pm

If you are getting rechargeable batteries, Eneloop is a good brand that tends to have much lower self-discharge rates. I believe Amazon is repackaging Eneloops (the batteries have white tops) under the AmazonBasics brand:

$26.99 -> $19.10 eneloop NEW 2000mAh Typical, 1900mAh Minimum, 1500 cycle, 8 Pack AA, Ni-MH Pre-Charged Rechargeable Batteries
$17.19 AmazonBasics AA NiMH Precharged Rechargeable Batteries-8-Pack, 2000 mAh

Oh and don't forget that you can use the bogleheads.org's amazon link to enter Amazon before adding an item to your cart to give bogleheads.org a little bit of money.
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Re: Rechargable vs alkaline batteries

Postby imperialman67 » Sat Mar 16, 2013 2:21 pm

Thank you everyone for the good advice.
Now in true Bogleheads fashion, why wouldn't my Radio Shack battery charger be a "good' charger for Enloops?
Reason I am asking is that the 2 year old AA Enloops I have seem to be performing just fine with this charger
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Re: Rechargable vs alkaline batteries

Postby HardKnocker » Sat Mar 16, 2013 3:50 pm

I buy rechargeable Ni-mh batteries on ebay really cheap. They ship from China direct. All batteries today are made in China.

I've used them for years.
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Re: Rechargable vs alkiline batteries

Postby mike143 » Sat Mar 16, 2013 5:12 pm

midareff wrote:
DualIncomeNoDebt wrote:First, get a new charger, try one that comes with Eneloop batteries. If you're a battery nerd, get a MaHa C9000.

Second, we use Eneloops exclusively for everything that takes batteries. Eneloops are worth it if you get them for the right price, we bought a package deal on Amazon. Eneloops last a long time on a single charge, and almost no draining when not in use. Superior to any other rechargeable batteries we've tried.
+1
+2, exact setup I have (Eneloops and MaHa C9000). I only use rechargeables in devices that will not take the voltage down to the point of no return, so no flashlights or remotes. A good charger can also revive batteries that have been abused by inferior chargers. Eneloops are made in Japan. It does not look like AmazonBasic batteries are Eneloops, but there are Duracell's that are Eneloops but the problem with those are they look similar to Duracell disposable batteries.
blevine wrote:I bought a pack of Lithium AA batteries for my smoke detectors.

Mine were 9v and I replaced them all with Lithiums, the beeping was driving me crazy. Every single Akaline battery in the smoke detectors tested good, haven't heard a beep since replacing them.
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Re: Rechargable vs alkiline batteries

Postby Toons » Sat Mar 16, 2013 8:28 pm

midareff wrote:
DualIncomeNoDebt wrote:First, get a new charger, try one that comes with Eneloop batteries. If you're a battery nerd, get a MaHa C9000.

Second, we use Eneloops exclusively for everything that takes batteries. Eneloops are worth it if you get them for the right price, we bought a package deal on Amazon. Eneloops last a long time on a single charge, and almost no draining when not in use. Superior to any other rechargeable batteries we've tried.



+1


+2 eneloops for everything here,just recharged some today for computer mice,sensor
for gas fireplace,a couple wall clocks,sure don't miss buying alkaline any more :happy
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Re: Rechargable vs alkaline batteries

Postby Epsilon Delta » Sat Mar 16, 2013 10:51 pm

edglim wrote:i use powerex ... 1000mah aaa for all household use (calculators, remote controls, flashlights, wireless mouse/keyboard, clocks, digital camera)

also bought rechargeable 350 mah aaa batteries 2-3 years ago from harbor freight that i use for led bike lights...


Personally I consider my bike lights to be life preserving equipment, so they get the good stuff.
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Re: Rechargable vs alkaline batteries

Postby DoubleDraw » Mon Mar 18, 2013 6:24 pm

yet another recommendation for eneloops. I use battery powered headphones all day at work and they go far longer than any other brand I've seen.
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Re: Rechargable vs alkaline batteries

Postby ossipago » Mon Mar 18, 2013 7:30 pm

I recommend Eneloops even for flashlights and remotes. A major benefit is that the chance of leakage is virtually nil. Alkaline batteries leak all the time, especially when drained, as they often get in items used only occasionally. I had a very nice flashlight ruined in this way by leaking AAs.

A hint: Often smart chargers like the LaCrosse or Maha won't charge rechargeables drained beyond a certain point, due to internal design. To fix that, just put the batteries in a dumb charger (e.g. the cheap ones without individual battery charging, current selection, etc.) for a few minutes, then transfer to the smart charger. You can also short the "dead" battery with a live one, but I don't like doing that, and just use the dumb charger method on the rare occasions it is needed.
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Re: Rechargable vs alkaline batteries

Postby ossipago » Mon Mar 18, 2013 7:34 pm

imperialman67 wrote:Thank you everyone for the good advice.
Now in true Bogleheads fashion, why wouldn't my Radio Shack battery charger be a "good' charger for Enloops?
Reason I am asking is that the 2 year old AA Enloops I have seem to be performing just fine with this charger


As I understand it, dumb chargers don't terminate current flow to the battery properly, so they "overcharge" it. This ultimately strains the battery's capacity beyond designed specifications and lowers the overall lifetime. Smart chargers shut off full current flow based on internal resistance, and switch to a neglible trickle current, to prevent this type of damage.
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Re: Rechargable vs alkaline batteries

Postby Sam I Am » Mon Mar 18, 2013 7:39 pm

Message deleted.
Last edited by Sam I Am on Sun Oct 06, 2013 2:19 pm, edited 2 times in total.
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Re: Rechargable vs alkaline batteries

Postby ossipago » Mon Mar 18, 2013 7:43 pm

Sam I Am wrote:Back on task, has anyone had good luck recharging alkaline batteries? I have seen a few chargers claiming to work with alkalines.

Sam I Am


Don't do it. It has a high risk of creating toxic gas (KOH) and leakage, with low upsides. Recycle them (don't toss them in the trash), or switch to batteries designed to be recharged.
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Re: Rechargable vs alkaline batteries

Postby chipmonk » Mon Mar 18, 2013 8:05 pm

imperialman67 wrote:Thank you everyone for the good advice.
Now in true Bogleheads fashion, why wouldn't my Radio Shack battery charger be a "good' charger for Enloops?
Reason I am asking is that the 2 year old AA Enloops I have seem to be performing just fine with this charger

I agree, if your current charger ain't broke, then don't fix it. The more advanced chargers tend to be able to charge NiMH batteries (1) faster and (2) more fully and--with more variation depending on how you use both the battery and the charger--(3) they may prolong the lives of the batteries.

Battery University has many of the gory electrical details of how to charge NiMH batteries, and how not to: http://batteryuniversity.com/learn/arti ... al_hydride
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Re: Rechargable vs alkaline batteries

Postby Professor Emeritus » Mon Mar 18, 2013 10:34 pm

blevine wrote:After using mainly eneloop for a long while,
I bought a pack of Lithium AA batteries for my smoke detectors.
Just can't stand the constant beeping when the batter drains, and need to change and charge.

I use the Eneloop still for most devices, just not for smoke detectors.

I published my first article on smoke detector regulation in 1977
I would never use rechargeables in a smoke detector, although I use them for almost everything else.
The low power depletion curve is different and rechargebles can and do short out and die.

I use lithium batteries for underwater flashes when I scuba dive. . They also have s different depletion curve and when depleted often do not beep long enough to be noticed even though they last longer.
Use the batteries recommended by the
manufacturer.
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Re: Rechargable vs alkaline batteries

Postby nimo956 » Mon Mar 18, 2013 10:52 pm

Professor Emeritus wrote:
blevine wrote:After using mainly eneloop for a long while,
I bought a pack of Lithium AA batteries for my smoke detectors.
Just can't stand the constant beeping when the batter drains, and need to change and charge.

I use the Eneloop still for most devices, just not for smoke detectors.

I published my first article on smoke detector regulation in 1977
I would never use rechargeables in a smoke detector, although I use them for almost everything else.
The low power depletion curve is different and rechargebles can and do short out and die.

I use lithium batteries for underwater flashes when I scuba dive. . They also have s different depletion curve and when depleted often do not beep long enough to be noticed even though they last longer.
Use the batteries recommended by the
manufacturer.


Sorry to hijack this thread, but it seems that a lot of the engineers here know a lot about batteries. I use a 1 degree spotmeter for photography and it is critical that the readings remain accurate even as the battery starts to die. Is it better to use alkaline, lithium, or silver oxide batteries? Thanks.
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Re: Rechargable vs alkaline batteries

Postby Vermonster » Tue Mar 19, 2013 6:40 am

HardKnocker wrote:I buy rechargeable Ni-mh batteries on ebay really cheap. They ship from China direct. All batteries today are made in China.

I've used them for years.



Not all batteries today made in China. Eneloops (for example) made in Japan by Sanyo (Panasonic).

Some batteries still made in USA--for example Energizer Advanced Lithium 9v (primary) batteries are Made in USA.

Personally I've had very mixed luck ordering NiMH other than Eneloop. Given how small the price difference is (especially over years of use), I just buy the Eneloops.

VT
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Re: Rechargable vs alkaline batteries

Postby Epsilon Delta » Tue Mar 19, 2013 11:27 am

nimo956 wrote:Sorry to hijack this thread, but it seems that a lot of the engineers here know a lot about batteries. I use a 1 degree spotmeter for photography and it is critical that the readings remain accurate even as the battery starts to die. Is it better to use alkaline, lithium, or silver oxide batteries? Thanks.


Sigh. People want too much from their batteries.

The best solution is to use a meter that regulates the power supply and has a low battery warning so that the reading does not depend on the battery voltage. The second best solution is to work out how long batteries last and replace them before they go flat. be that every session or every week. The third best solution is probably to use silver oxide batteries, since they have a flatter discharge curve in this type of application.
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Re: Rechargable vs alkaline batteries

Postby Dulocracy » Thu Mar 21, 2013 11:26 am

I had a bad experience with a charger by Targus. I am using the recommendations about enloop above.

My view on the charger is that it should not consume much energy. Having a display uses energy that increases the operating cost of charging. I dislike that immensely. Simple charger that charges. No complicated, expensive, energy consuming display for me.
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Re: Rechargable vs alkaline batteries

Postby Easy Rhino » Thu Mar 21, 2013 6:02 pm

On a tangent, where are easy places to dispose of my used alkaline batteries?
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Re: Rechargable vs alkaline batteries

Postby OnFire » Fri Mar 22, 2013 1:04 am

Usually Home Depot accepts dead batteries.

I just bought 32 more Eneloops and received them today. I have two small kids and they have a zillion toys that take AA and AAA. I've lost count, but I bet I have close to 100 Eneloops floating around the house. Overall, they are cheaper to own and less stress on the environment. They work perfectly and last years. Just get them.
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Re: Rechargable vs alkaline batteries

Postby Mudpuppy » Fri Mar 22, 2013 3:34 am

Easy Rhino wrote:On a tangent, where are easy places to dispose of my used alkaline batteries?

If your profile location is correct, there should be several household hazardous waste drop-offs that take batteries in your area: http://www.sandiego.gov/environmental-s ... ycle.shtml
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