Online Shoppers Guide to Buying Rechargeable Batteries

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Online Shopper's Guide to Buying Rechargeable Batteries

Batteries are, at times, more expensive than the devices they power. It seems as though the price of batteries go up every time consumers head to the store whenever their remotes, flashlights, cameras, or headphones run out of juice. Therefore, more and more consumers are turning to an option which is not only better for the environment, but also more convenient and cheaper too. This alternative is rechargeable batteries.

Learning about rechargeable batteries and how they work is the first step for individuals in becoming informed consumers. Beyond saving money as well as helping the environment, rechargeable batteries vary in composition and lifespan. All of the above considerations should be thought about when individuals are purchasing batteries, whether they are A, D, or even speciality batteries for mobile phones and cameras. While buyers are able purchase at dozens of retailers and high street shops, consumers can also buy on eBay.

Why Buy Rechargeable Batteries?

Those who choose to buy rechargeable batteries have their own reasons for doing so, but most understand the combination of benefits which make rechargeable batteries an appealing alternative to the standard batteries that are used until they are flat and then they are just throw away. Reviewing the benefits and highlights of the reasons consumers turn to rechargeable batteries as power sources for their electronics helps potential buyers make informed choices.

Benefits of Rechargeable Batteries

Saving money and helping the environment are just two benefits of recharging batteries. Also, they are convenient because users can charge batteries without leaving home to purchase brand new batteries.

Money Savings

Experts project that people will only continue to spend money each year on consumer batteries while manufacturers continue to spend money on research and development. While this number accounts for both rechargeable and disposable battery types, rechargeable batteries account for a smaller share vs. disposable batteries. A rechargeable battery system costs more upfront than an average packet of disposable batteries. However, with repeated usage, rechargeable batteries prove that they are well worth the higher costs upfront. Some experts claim that rechargeable batteries save the average consumer a large sum of money each year as compared to disposable AA batteries.

Environmental Benefits

Every time people use rechargeable batteries, not only is money saved, but the landfills are also saved from decaying batteries and packaging. Rechargeable batteries are one of the best ways to make the switch from a 'trash' to 'recycling' mentality. Lastly, buying rechargeable batteries online eliminates the need to drive to a store for batteries, so gas and time is saved as well.

Convenience

Consumers empathise with the frustration that comes from devices dying because the batteries have expired. The frustration is compounded when consumers discover they do not have the right batteries on hand to replace the dead disposable batteries. The need to drive to the store and spend the money for new batteries is inconvenient for most consumers. With rechargeable batteries, the average person can simply reinsert their batteries into their charger and wait an hour or so, depending on the manufacturer, before using the batteries again.

Replacing disposable batteries with rechargeable batteries just makes sense. It is better for the environment, saves money, and is possibly a more convenient option.

Types of Rechargeable Batteries

There are different types of rechargeable batteries with certain electro-chemical compositions. The types of batteries vary according to their ability to hold a charge and their compatibility with some electronic devices. There are four main types of rechargeable batteries as of 2012.

Nickel-Cadmium Rechargeable Batteries

NiCad, or nickel-cadmium batteries were the first rechargeable batteries released. Cadmium is considered a hazardous material, making this battery quite rare on the market today. However, NiCad batteries drain slowly, making them ideal for power-demanding items. For devices which do not use a lot of power, like remote controls, they are still extremely effective.

Nickle-Metal Hydride Rechargeable Batteries

NiMH, or nickle-metal hydride rechargeable batteries were the first battery type to follow NiCad batteries. They are fairly inexpensive while being an effective type of rechargeable battery. NiMH batteries are the same batteries that car manufacturers use in electric and hybrid vehicles.

Nickle-Zinc Rechargeable Batteries

NiZn, or nickle-zinc batteries are ideal rechargeable batteries for high-energy use items like heavy-duty, battery-powered headphones, flashlights, and more. Most NiZn batteries actually produce more power than disposable battery equivalents. NiZn batteries are a fairly new addition to consumer-based rechargeable batteries.

Lithium-Ion Rechargeable Batteries

Li-Ion, or lithium-ion batteries are most commonly used in mobile phones, DSLR cameras, and laptop computers. With proper care, Li-Ion batteries only need replacing every few years and are capable of being recharged more often than competing materials. Popular consumer batteries, sized A through C, do not usually come in Li-Ion formats.

Deciding What Type of Rechargeable Batteries to Use

Consumers should consider the environmental impact as well as type of devices they are using when considering their choice of rechargeable batteries. All rechargeable batteries need to be disposed of carefully. Some batteries come included with the device, such as a cell phone, and may only need to be replaced after a couple of years.

Important Features of Rechargeable Battery Chargers

Besides the composition of a rechargeable battery, there are a few features that buyers should be looking out for when selecting a battery charger. These features relate to how many batteries can be charged at one time, whether or not the charger discharges batteries before charging them again, and if the charger shuts off automatically on completing the charging cycle. These features help lengthen the lifespan of rechargeable batteries.

Individual Charging Capabilities

Some rechargeable battery chargers require users to charge their batteries in pairs of either two, four, six, or eight, otherwise the chargers will not work. This is extremely inconvenient. Some remotes, clocks, or other smaller electronic devices only require one AA or AAA battery to power them. This means that users have to extract another single battery from somewhere else to get the charger to work. Buyers should to look for chargers which can charge a single battery at a time.

Discharge Cycle

Another important part of charging rechargeable batteries is the discharge cycle. Experts recommend this be done on every fourth charge. This is usually a button or setting which is changed on the charger. The charger then drains the batteries to zero per cent before charging them to full again. Simply charging batteries when they still have some charge in them causes 'memory effect'. This effect sometimes shortens the lifespan of the batteries, and it can affect how batteries a hold charge.

Trickle Charge or Shutdown

Another important aspect of charging rechargeable batteries is the concept of a trickle charge or the ability for a charger to shut down at the completion of the charging cycle. Essentially, continuing to try to charge rechargeable batteries once they are already full oftentimes damages the batteries internally, shortening the ability for them to take a full charge in the future, and limiting the lifespan of the batteries. Some chargers have a feature where once the batteries are full, the charger either shuts off, or it charges at a much lower volume to keep the batteries just at full, but no more.

These charger features may add to the initial price of a set of rechargeable batteries, but these costs are recouped in the long run. Each feature extends the individual charge length and overall lifespan of a set of rechargeable batteries.

How to Find and Buy Rechargeable Batteries Online

In order to find a great selection of rechargeable batteries online for any budget, begin by heading to the eBay homepage. On each of eBay's web pages you can see a search bar. Whether you are looking for a specific battery for your DSLR camera, mobile phone, flashlight, or children's toy, you can search on eBay. If too many options appear, you can filter according to price and condition of the item. Also, if the seller's post is unclear regarding the condition of the battery, be sure to ask the seller before purchasing the item. Lastly, be sure to pay for your purchase through a confirmed and verified source such as PayPal or credit card.

Seller Feedback

After each transaction buyers are encouraged to leave feedback about their experience throughout the sales process. Buyers can leave feedback about the item, customer service, and how pleased they are with the overall process.

Conclusion

No matter your reason for buying rechargeable batteries, buying batteries online is more convenient than visiting high street shops or other retail outlets. Additionally, it is becoming increasingly more popular to purchase rechargeable batteries as opposed to disposable batteries. It is cheaper, more convenient, and better for the environment. With more and more personal electronic devices entering the market each year, it only makes sense that average consumers find new ways to cheaply and efficiently power those devices. Rechargeable batteries come in a range of chemical compositions which can affect how the batteries work with certain devices, so consumers should be aware of different types of batteries. Also, keep in mind specific helpful features such as discharge cycles and trickle charging, in order to lengthen the life of a set of rechargeable batteries. Lastly, shop on eBay to find a huge selection of rechargeable batteries for all the battery-powered devices in your home.

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