Most of our devices can’t function without batteries. We need them to run our cars, watches, laptops, cameras, phones and so many other uses.
With that said, there are so many batteries to choose from. The type of battery you settle on primarily depends on the purpose intended. Generally, devices come with a list of suitable batteries on the manuals. It would be best to stick to the ones indicated instead of using the wrong type would shorten the shelf life of your device or cause it not to function efficiently.
The main categories of batteries out there are non-rechargeable, also known as primary batteries and rechargeable batteries also called secondary batteries.
Primary batteries are the most common ones to find. They are called non-rechargeable batteries because they cannot be revived once they’ve been fully discharged. The biggest advantage of these types of batteries is that they can be used in situations where you don’t have the option of charging. An example of this type is dry cell batteries.
On the other hand, secondary batteries can be used and recharged several times. They might initially cost more, but they are more economical in the long run because you don’t have to keep replacing them all the time. A few examples are Lithium-ion (Li-ion), Nickel-Metal Hydride (Ni-MH), and Lead-Acid batteries.
Remember that you shouldn’t make the mistake of attempting to recharge a primary battery. It won’t make the battery work again and it’s very dangerous because an explosion could occur.
When finding the right type of battery, always confirm the type that is best suited then look at other factors like preference and cost.
How do you store batteries for the long term?
It’s extremely crucial to understand how to store batteries the right way. You shouldn’t store them haphazardly because this reduces their shelf life significantly. You definitely wouldn’t want to end up ruining your batteries because of poor storage practices.
First, the type of battery you have determines how you should store them. Some need more maintenance than others and that’s why you need to pay attention to these details.
Storing Non-rechargeable Batteries
Primary batteries don’t need any complicated procedures when it comes to storage and maintenance. They can stay dormant for years and still work fine.
However, making the wrong move could destroy them since they're not designed to be recharged.
The Best Way To Preserve Them For A Long Time Is
Preserve them in a suitable container –you can choose to preserve them in their original packaging or find one that’s moisture-proof.
Keep them away from other metallic items-this includes the container you’re storing them in. Contact with other metallic items will cause a short circuit. You should also arrange them properly before storage with all the positive ends facing one side and the negative, the other.
Keep them in a cool dry place-an environment that’s too hot will interfere with their capacity and possibly cause rupturing.
A huge debate when it comes to the batteries is whether or not you should store them in the refrigerator. Some think that this prolongs battery life but others think it’s a myth.
The truth is that there is no significant improvement when you store them there vs a cool, dry place. And the danger is that condensation will damage the batteries especially if they're stored there for a prolonged period. It’s just not necessary to stress over keeping your batteries in the fridge all year long.
But if you choose to store them there, make sure you do it the right way and enclose them in a vapor-proof container.
Storing Rechargeable Batteries
These batteries are usually more complicated and need more care as compared to their counterparts. Because of that fact, there have been a few misconceptions about them when it comes to storage.
A common myth is that you should never store them on concrete. The assumption is that they lose their capacity but this simply isn’t true. This used to happen with old batteries decades ago but new, upgraded batteries don’t get affected but concrete surfaces at all especially because they come with a protective case.
This What You Should Do Instead
Store in an appropriate container-the original packaging would be best. Otherwise, you should use a moisture-proof one and avoid metallic containers.
Store in a cool and dry environment-this is the standard requirement for storage. It’s the best way to prevent any corrosion or damage.
Do some maintenance-some batteries that can be kept in a fully discharged state and others need to be toped up. The Nickel-based batteries like Ni-MH and Ni-Cd can be stored in a fully discharged state but some brands recommended that you charge them once a year to prevent deterioration.
The Lithium-based batteries should be stored with a partial charge of around 40% and Lead Acid batteries should be fully charged before storage. Lead Acid batteries need to be topped up when the levels drop to 70%.
You should also keep the batteries corrosion free by cleaning them every once in a while.
Many people don’t think it’s a big deal to pile all your batteries in one container but this is not recommended.
The only time you should store batteries together is when they’re of the same type and same age.
Therefore avoid mixing old and new batteries, primary and secondary batteries, or even those of different brands. Keep them separated in different containers when storing.
Storing in plastic bags is okay as long as you consider the important details. If they’re of the same type and same age, it’s completely safe.
However, you should cover the battery terminals to prevent them from getting into contact with each other in the bag. The most recommended way to protect them is by using plastic caps.
Tips To Know
It’s a good idea to invest in a good Battery storage box if you’re storing them for a long time. They will save you from the stress of trying to find an appropriate place to keep them because everything has already been covered for you.
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