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Road Trip!!!
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850 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
Whats the life expentancy of typical rechargeable batteries, as in how many times can they be recharged? Are they harmed if dropped? Just seems to me after a while they don't hold their charge very well after several recharges.

With this in mind is it more cost effective to go with a larger solar charger with the expressed purpose of recharging batteries or to go with a larger supply of regular batteries?


Thanks

BIH
 

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Survival Actual
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4,685 Posts
Battery Lifespan
The life of a rechargeable battery operating under normal conditions is generally between 500 to 800 charge-discharge cycles. This translates into one and a half to three years of battery life for the average user. As your rechargeable battery begins to die, you will notice a decline in the running time of the battery. When your two hour battery is only supplying you with an hour's worth of use, it's time for a new battery..
http://www.warehousebatteryoutlet.com/batteryinfo.asp?flag=9

Regular alkaline batteries have a long storage time as long as you dont install them in a device. Energizer company (i think) boasts a 10 year shelf life on theirs. I don't know if thats true or not. Lithium batteries also have a very long shelf life.

If you're planning on surviving for more than two years, i would recommend not relying on batteries at all.
Rechargeable batteries must be stored in a fully charged state!
 

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Live Secret, Live Happy
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They only rechargable batteries with a truely good track record are the premium brands of flooded deep cycle lead acid batteries. These are made by Surrette and Hawker. They have demonstrated over 25 yrs service powering solar power systems in very harsh conditions of the Mojave desert. That works out to over 9,000 cycles at modest 20% depth of discharge. You get to pay for all that quality so if you go this way hang on to your wallet.
Rechargeable flashlight batteries and even the new rechargeable tool batteries will only last a few years. Much better than nothing, but I prefer to use full sized deep cycle RV batteries or golf cart batteries.
 

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If you mean AAs and AAAs and the like, get the precharged ones. They will hold a charge on the shelf for almost a year; Costco carries them.
 

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A lithium battery is supposed to have a shelf life of 20 years. Again, you should not store them in a battery operated item or have any metal touching the ends. Best to leave them in their original package until needed.
 

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I have NiCd and NiMh batteries, I bought them back in 2004 and they are still working fine. Granted, I have never used them to power anything big. I have a cordless mouse for my computer, remote controls for some appliances and solar powered garden lights. They don't work well in high powered devices, like many digital camera's, as they only last an hour, if you're lucky. I would not put the batteries in the higher powered device, until I was going to use it and have to take them out in between use, or they would die. I have an array of dynamo torches (flashlights) and a dynamo powered radio, so I don't need batteries for them. My son has thrown, dropped and chipped a couple of the dynamo torches and they are still going strong :)
 

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Proverbs 26:4
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I've not had good experiences with rechargable batteries. Because of that I have been stocking up on regular batteries. With a 7-10 year shelf life I feel that is suitable for providing a very good amount of power for various small devices. I need to start incorporating more lithium into my preps since they seem to have an even longer shelf life and they provide better / longer power.
 

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Super Moderator and Walking Methane Refinery
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I've been using rechargeable AA, C and D batteries since the mid 90s. Most of them I bought back then are still in service. My secret is to have enough of them to rotate them, rather than use them up and recharge them daily. I'm replacing them with NiMH as I can, but I have to admit that I'm surprised by how long the NiCads have lasted. My uses for them has mostly been weapon sights (Kobra reflex sights), flashlights, and GPRS radios. I have a bunch of small solar chargers.

Every one of the NiCad 9v batteries I bought back then are still working also. I use them in those pull pin alarms hidden around my perimeter so they don't get used often though.
 

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Wayfinder
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Unknown to many people, a major improvement in rechargeable batteries happened in the last year or two. Ultra Low Self Discharge (ULSD) NiMH batteries came on the market. What are they? Rechargeable batteries that keep their charge for up to nine months, not 2-3 weeks like the older generation ones do. If you're going to buy rechargeables, these are the way to go. Personally, I like Sanyo Eneloops from this source:

http://www.thomasdistributing.com/s...-per-4-pack-6-or-more-957-p-287.html?SP_id=50
 
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