Don’t Forget the Batteries
This holiday season, battery operated toys and gizmos are more popular than ever. You’ll need plenty of batteries, but how do you know what’s best?
AA and AAA batteries power many toys, game controllers, remotes, and other gadgets. They are divided into two main types: Lithium and Alkaline.
- Lithium batteries generally give the highest performance, but are more expensive. They are popular for high-demand devices.
- Alkaline batteries are less expensive, but not necessarily inferior. Top rated alkaline batteries approach lithium performance, and are great for basic toys, remote controls, and other low-demand devices.
You can learn more by visiting Consumer Reports’ Battery Buying Guide.
Consider rechargeable batteries this year. If you haven’t experienced rechargeables recently, you may be surprised at the technical advances. Though they cost more than single-use batteries, a good rechargeable can be used hundreds to thousands of times!
One of the best on the market is Panasonic’s eneloop series, available in AA and AAA sizes.
- Long life in high-drain devices.
- No memory effect; can be recharged at any stage of depletion.
- Retains 70% capacity after 5 years in storage.
- Can be recharged up to 2,100 times!
A range of chargers are available for fast battery replenishment.
You can learn more by visiting Consumer Search’s article on Best Rechargeable Batteries.
Practice Battery Safety
- When replacing batteries, be consistent. Use batteries of the same type, brand, and age. Mixing old and new, or different types and brands can stress batteries, causing them to leak or even rupture.
- Never try to recharge single-use batteries. They are not designed for reuse and may explode!
- Remove batteries from any device you will not use for several months or are placing in storage.
- Dispose of or recycle old batteries quickly, keeping them out of the reach of kids. Loose batteries, especially button batteries, present choking and poisoning hazards for young children.
- If you see a white or brown substance on your batteries, a clear fluid build-up, or other discoloration, they are leaking. Carefully dispose of these batteries without getting any of the leaking substance near your eyes, nose, or mouth.
Household Battery Disposal
Finally, if you are wondering how to dispose of those old batteries, or which ones to recycle, Protec has an informative Blog entry on Battery Disposal.