Can I Buy AAA Rechargeable Batteries Online?

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Can I Buy AAA Rechargeable Batteries Online?

With the rise in popularity of portable devices such as cordless power tools, cell phones, laptops, and MP3 players, the necessity for rechargeable batteries has increased exponentially in recent years. A rechargeable battery may also referred to as an ‘accumulator’ or a ‘storage battery’.

Rechargeable batteries come in many shapes and sizes, from button-sized cells to mammoth systems of interconnecting stabilisers used for electrical networks. The modern rechargeable battery is based on an early model invented in 1859 by Gaston Plante. He devised the lead-acid battery, which became the first battery that could be recharged by passing a reverse current through it, essentially recharging it. This wondrous invention was used to power the lights in train carriages.

Camille Alphonse Faure improved upon Plante’s invention in 1881, by streamlining the design into one with greater performance and one that could be mass-produced. The principles of the lead-acid battery have not changed since 1859; the bulkier versions, similar to the original Plante invention, are still utilised to power automobiles all over the world.

Individuals searching for a great deal on AAA rechargeable batteries online will find an excellent selection of batteries made up of different chemical compositions, for every possible use under the rainbow. To properly select the right type of rechargeable battery, understanding the various differences in composition and efficiency can save much time and effort.

What Are Rechargeable Batteries and How Do They Work?

Rechargeable batteries are just what their name implies and can be recharged and used many times. They are known as both storage batteries and accumulators because they have the ability to accumulate and store energy.

When looking at a battery, an individual notices the makeup of two protruding ends, and a smooth metal canister connecting them. The protruding ends are electrodes, one positive (cathode) and one negative (anode). The core of the battery is contained within the metal canister, and is made up of a mixture of chemicals and metals. Electrical current runs through the core, between the two electrodes, and produces voltage.

The core comprises essentially plates and reactive chemicals, which are polarised causing all the electrons to gather on one side of a plate. As a result, this side becomes negatively charged, while the other side is positively charged. Connecting a battery to a device causes a reaction where the electrons flow from the negative to the positive side, and an electrochemical response that allows the electrons to replenish themselves. This is the electrical energy that powers the device.

It is important to understand the terminology associated with battery power and life. The capacity of a battery is the amount of electric charge it can store, and the discharge is the per cent of battery capacity that has been lost. Battery cycles are defined as a full charge, followed by a full discharge and recharge. There is no standard that states the level of discharge needed to constitute a full cycle.

Types and Chemical Composition of Rechargeable Batteries

There are over 20 types of rechargeable batteries being sold, and more in development. The most common rechargeable batteries available today are nickel-cadmium (NiCad), nickel-metal hydride (NiMH), lithium-ion, and lithium-ion polymer.

Nickel-cadmium (NiCad)

Nickel-cadmium batteries use nickel oxide hydroxide and metallic cadmium as electrodes. The first nickel-cadmium battery was invented in 1899 and evolved into the one of the most widely used rechargeable batteries on the planet, until it was overtaken by the NiMH, or nickel-metal hydride. NiCad batteries show little decrease in the amount of voltage discharged until the end of their lifespans, and are excellent performers under a wide range of conditions. The cost of materials and manufacturing of this battery make it more cost-prohibitive than that of its relatives, the lead-acid battery and the nickel-metal hydride.

Nickel-metal Hydride (NiMH)

Nickel-metal hydride batteries are a rechargeable battery that utilises positive electrodes synthesised from nickel oxyhydroxide (NiOOH), but use a hydrogen-absorbing alloy for the negative electrodes. NiMH batteries are superior to nickel-cadmium batteries because of their high capacity and unparalleled energy density. NiMH batteries have replaced NiCad in most roles, but their popularity has begun to wane due to the increase in the availability of the lithium-ion battery, which exhibits superior performance.

Lithium-ion (LIB or Li-ion battery)

The lithium-ion family of batteries is unique in its ability to move lithium ions from the negative electrode to the positive electrode during discharge, and then back again for charging. These batteries are the most common form used to power electronics, and demand is increasing rapidly, due to their slow loss of charge and superior energy density.

Lithium-ion Polymer (LiPo)

Lithium-ion polymer batteries are composed of several identical batteries that lie parallel to increase the total amount of available voltage. Lithium-ion polymer batteries have evolved from their parental unit, the lithium-ion. This type of battery is relatively new in the marketplace, having made its appearance in 1995. This battery is unique, because it can be shaped into any form desired by manufacturers. It has become attractive for use in cell phones, because LiPo may be formed into smaller, thinner, lighter cells.

There are other types of rechargeable batteries available beyond the four most common listed above. Each has its own specific voltage, discharge, cycle, and battery life.

Rechargeable Battery Types

Type

Voltage (v)*

Discharge (per cent/month)

Cycles (#)

Life (years)

Lead-acid

2.1

3‒4

500‒800

5‒8 years automotive; 20 y��6

Lithium-ion polymer (LiPo)

3.7

5

500‒1000

2‒3

Lithium iron phosphate

3.25

unknown

2000+

>10

Lithium sulphur

2.0

unknown

~100

unknown

Lithium titanate

2.3

unknown

9000+

20+

Sodium ion

1.7

unknown

5000+

In development

Thin film lithium

unknown

unknown

40,000

unknown

Zinc bromide

unknown

unknown

unknown

unknown

Vanadium redox

1.15‒1.55

20

14,000

10‒stationary

Sodium sulphur

unknown

unknown

unknown

unknown

Molten salt

2.58

unknown

3000+

<= 20

Silver-oxide

1.86

unknown

unknown

unknown

*v (volt) ‒ unit of measure for a battery’s electrical potential or power.

What Role Does Size Play?

AAA batteries are part of a group known as single-cell round batteries. This group is manufactured with a positive terminal at the top of the cell and a negative terminal at the bottom of the can. The can is what contains all of the battery parts, and is not used as a terminal. Batteries are sold according to battery type and size.

Round Battery Sizes

Name

Other Names

IEC Name

ANSI/ECIA Name

Capacity (mAh)

Dimensions (mm)

AAA

U16

LR03‒alkaline

R03‒carbon-zinc

FR03‒Li-FeS2

HR03‒NiMH

KR03‒NiCad

ZR03‒NiOOH

24A‒alkaline

24D‒carbon-zinc

24LF‒Li-FeS2

1200‒alkaline

540‒carbon-zinc

800‒1000‒NiMH

10.5 x 44.5

AA

D14

LR6‒alkaline

R6‒carbon-zinc

FR6‒Li-FeS2

HR6‒NiMH

KR6‒NiCad

ZR6‒NiOOH

15A‒alkaline

15D‒carbon-zinc

15LF‒Li-FeS2

1.2H2‒NiMH

1.2K2‒NiCad

2700‒alkaline

1100‒carbon-zinc

3000‒Li-FeS2

1700-2900‒NiMH

600-1000‒NiCad

14.5 x 50.5

C

U11

LR14‒alkaline

R14‒carbon-zinc

FR14‒Li-FeS2

HR14‒NiMH

KR14‒NiCad

ZR14‒NiOOH

14A‒alkaline

14D‒carbon-zinc

8000‒alkaline

3800‒carbon-zinc

4500‒6000‒NiMH

26.2 x 50

D

U2

LR20‒alkaline

R20‒carbon-zinc

FR20‒Li-FeS2

HR20‒NiMH

KR20‒NiCad

ZR20‒NiOOH

13A‒alkaline

13D‒carbon-zinc

12000‒alkaline

8000‒carbon-zinc

2200‒12000‒NiMH

34.2 x 61.5

mAh ‒ milli-ampere hour: the measure of how much current a battery will discharge over how long.

IEC - International Electrotechnical Commission

ECIA - Electronic Components Industry Association

ANSI - American National Standards Institute

Rechargeable Battery Care and Handling

Proper handling of rechargeable batteries will maximise their life. New batteries come in a discharged state and must be fully charged before using the first time. After a prolonged storage period, or upon initial use, the battery may require three to four charge/discharge cycles to reach maximum capacity. If a battery will not be used for more than a month, remove it from its charger and store in a cool, clean, dry place.

Each type of rechargeable battery has its own unique properties; therefore, it is not recommended to substitute one for another, unless the electronic device has been configured to accept more than one type of battery. Dirty battery contacts should be cleaned with alcohol and a cotton swab to maintain the proper connection between device and battery.

Tips for Battery Use and Storage

One myth concerning the proper handling batteries is that batteries should be stored in the refrigerator. In fact, there is no benefit to storing batteries that way. Batteries should be stored in a dry location at room temperature.

Batteries can and will overcharge if left on the charger, reducing the life and effectiveness of the battery.

It is important to note that batteries must not be thrown into the regular trash. All batteries, rechargeable or not, must be disposed of properly in an approved recycling facility.

It is strongly recommended never to connect batteries with different compositions, capacities, and voltages in series, or drop them, subjecting them a major impact. This may cause a serious explosion, resulting in bodily injury or even death.

How to Buy AAA Rechargeable Batteries on eBay

Before buying AAA rechargeable batteries from eBay, you should check your electronic device and manual for the precise type of battery your device requires or recommends. If the product is configured to accept several types of chemical composition of battery, then it is safe to go ahead and shop for the most affordable option. Another consideration is the quantity and other accessories needed for that battery type. If you already own a charger, then this is not an issue. Rechargeable batteries are more expensive to purchase but more than make up for the increase in cost by the lifetime of service generated by multiple recharges, not to mention the added environmental benefit due to the lower number of batteries that need to be disposed of when exhausted.

When you have chosen which battery you wish to purchase, it’s a good idea to verify whether the rechargeable battery for sale is new or actually one that has been used, and obtain the expiration date of the battery, if available. Other important information includes existing storage and packaging conditions and verifying the batteries are in good working order. Be cognisant of the seller’s policies, in the event of a return or exchange.

Conclusion

Rechargeable batteries are an excellent way to reduce waste and saving money. The vast array of options available in the marketplace ensures the consumer an affordable alternative to disposable batteries. There are over 20 types of chemical compositions available for all types of electronic needs.

Before purchasing rechargeable batteries, confirm the size and chemical composition required by the electronic device. AAA rechargeable batteries are one of the most common sizes required for small portable electronic devices, and may be purchased in bulk online through sites like eBay or in many different types of brick and mortar stores. Rechargeable batteries require the purchase of a charger for reuse, and must be charged initially before being placed in a device for the first time.

Proper care and handling of these types of batteries ensures the maximum life span possible. It is crucial that batteries are not mishandled and are disposed of properly. The types of chemicals used in manufacturing are dangerous, causing pollution to bodies of water and land if placed in with regular household rubbish. Using rechargeable batteries and disposing of them responsibly is a terrific way to adhere to the recommended three Rs of recycling: reduce, reuse and recycle.

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