If you have decided to make some small changes that will positively impact the planet, you may be considering investing in some lithium-ion rechargeable batteries. The main benefits of rechargeable batteries are that they can be used numerous times and will help to reduce your waste stream. This is particularly useful in homes that use a lot of single-use alkaline batteries. But if you are new to rechargeable batteries, you might not know about new options available or indeed what type of charger to buy. Below are a few pointers that should help you once you invest in rechargeable batteries.
You Do Not Need a Separate Charger
It used to be the case that you would need a specific charger for the type of battery you were charging. For example, if you were charging AA or AAA batteries, you would have a charger that might not necessarily work for a 9V battery. The good news is that new technology has meant that companies such as Pale Blue Earth can now provide chargers that work for the likes of USB C rechargeable AA, AAA, C, D, and 9V batteries. All the batteries have the circuitry built in and will simply connect to a USB cable, which can be plugged into any USB port.
Do Not Charge Different Battery Types at the Same Time
It is never a good idea to charge different battery types at the same time. This is because batteries have different charge and discharge rates. So, if you connect two different types of battery, one might charge faster than the other, resulting either in one battery being overcharged or undercharged, depending on when you disconnect the power.
You Cannot Charge Alkaline Batteries
Only rechargeable batteries can be recharged. Sounds simple enough, but there are many people who mistakenly believe that as long as they have a charger, any batteries can be charged. This is not the case. Single-use alkaline batteries are not designed to be recharged and doing so could cause high pressure within the battery, leading to leakage of the contents within it. In extreme cases, the battery could explode.
Do Not Let Your Batteries Drain Completely
Although you can allow the batteries to drain completely before recharging, it is best not to in order to prolong the lifespan. However, you should allow a full drain after every thirty charges or so when using lithium-ion batteries to avoid digital memory issues, which can affect a device’s power gauge. Furthermore, do not charge batteries that have more than 50 percent of a charge remaining. The performance of a device will not improve if you are constantly charging the batteries.
Never Leave Charging Batteries Unattended
While you do not have to sit watching your batteries as they charge (who has time for that!), you should not leave them charging when you are not at home. It is rare for battery charging to cause a problem, but it is not unheard of either. It is best to be at home so that you can disconnect the power once the batteries have finished charging. This will avoid potential overheating and damage to the batteries.
Make Sure the Charger is Away from Flammables
Never charge your batteries near to a flammable surface. This means that you should not leave charging batteries on a bed, sofa, or carpet, for example. When batteries are charging, they should be placed on a non-flammable, solid surface where there is adequate airflow. Also, make sure that the batteries are not placed in direct sunlight while charging so as to avoid overheating issues.