Batteries are the bane of many modern consumers existences. On one hand, we need batteries to power our many gadgets and gizmos, but on the other hand it seems like we’re buying batteries every time we turn around.
Battery costs can add up quickly, especially in a large high-tech household. I know we’re constantly trying to figure out how to make batteries last longer. After a little research and some experimenting, though, I think I finally figured out a few tips and tricks to help make batteries last longer.
How to make Batteries Last Longer
- Invest in rechargeable batteries. Disposable alkaline (and even lithium) batteries may seem like the cheaper way to go, but it’s actually much more expensive in the long run. To make batteries last longer and and cut your costs, opt for some rechargeable Nickel Metal Hydride (NiMH) batteries. These are only a little more expensive than disposable batteries, but they last much longer since you can recharge them up to hundreds of times. Just make sure you use the slow overnight chargers, since the quick battery chargers can deplete the lifespan of the batteries.
- Remove the batteries when they’re not being used. To make batteries last longer in some devices, remove them when you aren’t using them. Obviously this won’t work for all items, like clocks or remotes, but it will work for some, like remote control toys and seasonal items. Leaving batteries in a device can slowly drain them. Store the batteries in a small resealable plastic baggie and tape it to the item they go in so you won’t lose them.
- Buy the right batteries. If you want to make batteries last longer because they seem to die much too quickly, take a good look at the kinds of batteries you’re buying. I’ve found that name brands – like Duracell and Energizer – actually do matter when buying batteries, as cheap generic batteries tend to die much faster. Also, pay attention to the expiration date of the batteries that you buy – it should be at least a few years in the future.
- Store batteries properly. Always store them in a cool dry place away from metal, which can actually drain battery life. The original package is ideal, but a cardboard box or seal plastic baggie will also work. Contrary to popular belief, never store batteries in the freezer, as extreme heat or cold can actually kill them faster. Also, it’s not usually necessary to store them in the refrigerator either, although some people do claim to have success with this method.
- Buy batteries in bulk. While this won’t necessarily make batteries last longer, buying them in bulk will usually help cut the overall cost of buying batteries for your household. You’ll pay much less per battery when you buy batteries in bulk. Just make sure that you’ll use them before the expiration date, otherwise you’ll just be throwing money away.
- Stop using batteries. Probably the most effective way to make batteries last longer and save money is to stop using them altogether. Well, at least stop using them as much. Try to shy away from toys that require batteries, or at least get ones that are just as entertaining without the batteries. Try not to use your necessary battery powered devices as much, and you’ll most likely make batteries last longer and save some money in your household.
Do you have anything to add? How do you make batteries last longer in your household?
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