rechargeable batteries?

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anyone recommend a reliable brand of rechargeable batteries, and where can I buy them? i ordered some high-capacity NiMH C cells online a while back and last night when the power hadn't been restored by the time the sun went down I tried them in my flashlight; dead as a doornail. These had been charged by me after receiving them and then rotated through the charger again; all of my rechargeables have been in the charger within at least the last month. I feel so wasteful using alkalines but I keep having bad experiences with every rechargeable I try.
nate
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Most any name brand will be fine
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wrote:

Rechargable batteries, as a rule, are very bad for emergency use unless you continually keep them on trickle charge. The problem is they loss their charge just sitting on the shelf and when you go to use them...... well, you found that out. NiMH are particularly bad in this respect.
There is a new type of rechargeable on the market now call a hybrid battery. It combines the best of NiMH and alkaline batteries into a nice rechargable battery. Like alkaline, they retain their charge sitting on a shelf, and yet they are NiMH rechargable.
Look for the brand Eneloop, made by Sanyo. Its sold at Circuit City and also online. Also, Rayovac makes one, named appropriately enough, Hybrid Battery. There are several others on the market too.
-dickm
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wrote Re Re: rechargeable batteries?:

I use the Rayovac Hybrid batts and they are very good. About $10/4 at WalMart.
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Don't know about the hybrid, but my experience with Rayovac batteries were consistently all bad. Don't use it on expensive devices, it will all leak and ruin the electronics. Another junk battery is from Task Force.
I have good experience with GE, Lemar, Energizer and Panasonic. I had some GE rechargeable for 30 years and those same batteries still hold a charge - fantastic! The rechargeable batteries on my Braun toothbrush is going strong for 10 years, as strong as day one. Wish I knew what batteries Braun uses, like to get some to rebuild the power packs for my cordless drills.
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Hmm... sounds interesting but the common thread that I see is that all are only available in AAA and AA sizes. I got the C cell NiMHs so I wouldn't have to carry several batteries with me if I decided to head out for a long ride. I guess that plan won't work?
nate
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In article
snipped-for-privacy@hotmail.com says...

You can get adapters that will allow you to use a AA battery where you need a C or a D. Check http://www.thomas-distributing.com/index.htm for almost any rechargable need. I'll second the recommendation for the Sanyo Eneloops. Great batteries. They (
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Both NiCd and NiMH cells have a self-discharge rate that makes them unsuitable for long term storage.
Rechargeables are best used for frequent-use applications.
alkalines last longer in storage,at least 3 years.(Duracells LEAK,BTW.)
If you must use rechargables,for long term storage,get a flashlight that uses Lithium-ion batteries. They will store a charge for 6 months or more.
Flashlights that use lithium 123 cells will last in storage for up to 10 years,but the 123 cells are expensive.
--
Jim Yanik
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What voltage is your charger charging them to
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Some thoughts: The NiMH batteries may lose up to 1% of their charge every day. Don't keep charged batteries in flashlight - I use in a camera and they lose charge in the camera. Get a good led flashlight - batteries last far longer.
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I will add this. Not all batteries and rechargers are good matches.
I am not clear about what you are using these batteries for. Not all battery types are good matches for some uses. For example, I use a lot of rechargeable batteries for those items that I use often and will recharge the batteries every couple of months. However I use non-rechargables for things like thermometers and smoke detectors as they will last of years there. I also use alkaline in emergency flashlights.

--
Joseph Meehan

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this flashlight is actually used primarily as a bike headlight, that's why I bought the rechargeables so I could ride at night. Unfortunately the weather has not been cooperative lately; every single day for the past couple weeks it has either been >95 degrees and/or torrential rain, so it's been sitting. It's one of hte Lowe's deals I recommended in the other thread (the 3W LED one.) I thought that the rechargeables should be ready to use because I bought them very recently and rotated them through the charger at least twice, so they should have been at worst only partially discharged. I wanted to use them to save the alkalines in case the power didn't come back on today I wouldn't have to buy more, but they were utterly and completely dead, not even a glow from the LED. I probably have 4-5 hours run time on the alkalines and the light is still bright on them. I don't remember the brand of the batteries (couldn't see them, obviously, as I was swapping batteries in the dark) my charger is a couple year old Energizer charger that does both NiCads and NiMH.
nate
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Have you measured the voltage after charging, it should be somewhere over 1.35v, it could be a bad charger or one that does not put out enough amps to get the battery ever fully charged. As battery amp capacity has increased over the years old chargers can become worthless. 1 month it should not be dead unless its a cheap battery or defective or was never charged fully. Sanyo, Panasonic, Energiser, Duracell are respected brands there is alot of cheap chinese stuff being made to power cheap drills etc. Sanyo Eneloop are a new design which hold a charge for maybe 1 year, but you should check the battery and charger amp rating then the voltage after its charged and when dead, Led lights fire at lower voltages than incandesant, 1 month is to short to go dead, mine still run cameras at 3-4 months.
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Agreed, I have AAs that were charged in the same charger at the same time (or longer ago) in my digicam and they are still working. different brand battery tho.
I will check out the eneloops, those sound interesting. Might be what I need for stuff that gets used somewhat often but also may sit for several weeks at a time.
nate
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N8N wrote:

I just bought one of the 3W Lowes LED lights. I wanted a bright LED and it was probably your recommendation in other thread that sent me to Lowes. Very good deal - thanks. Wondered about the run time and glad to see it must be several hours. Light is very bright and I have a few other LED's that are not. Not thinking rechargables but I would think that C NiMH might be expensive.
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Nate; I too use the task force light as a bike light. Works well though I've had the occasional rider coming toward me shield their eyes! Am working on a light shield that will provide a sharp cutoff at the top of the hotspot .I use some older 1800 mah nimh's that give me a runtime of a bit over an hr- bout right for the length of my ride on a fairly well lit path in the wee hrs. Pat
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patrick wrote:

better yet, someone on one of the bike groups turned me on to this:
http://www.dealextreme.com/details.dx/sku.1919
they produce a very wide, narrow beam pattern. Not quite as much close-in light as a proper E-code car headlight, but as a $8 hack to a $30 flashlight, it works better than it has a right to.
Unfortunately, I seem to have found way too much stuff to do lately to do any significant amount of riding - today is the first nice day in appx. 2 weeks and I've got a whole pile of cardboard to break down for recycling before I go to bed...
nate
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I'm getting one for same use as well!
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wrote:

To support your statement: The Wii (Nintendo) game systems are very popular now. If one bothers to read the small print, it states that alkaline and NiMH batteries are ok to use, but NiCads and Lithium batteries should not be used. I'm curious why the last 2 are not ok - any thoughts? Alkaline & Lithium are both 1.5v and NiCad & NiMH are both 1.2v rechargeables so it doesn't appear to be a voltage problem.
KC
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Check out C.Crane, http://www.ccrane.com/more-categories/batteries-chargers/nimh-batteries.aspx ; their C and D cells stand out for actually having a higher mA-hr rating than their AA's, in contrast to the major brands. I've been using 4 of their D cells in my son's crib toy (Fisher-Price aquarium, lights and motor load) for a couple of years now very happily (once I got over paying FIFTEEN BUCKS FOR A FRIGGIN D-CELL). Note, they take at least 36 hours to fully charge but last at least 8 or 10 weeks in the toy, nightly usage ranging from nothing to maybe an hour. That's with C.Crane's own charger which they've discontinued in favour of a Rayovac model. They're a bunch of radio geeks so they must have decided the Rayovac's a good unit.
(I've also used C.Crane's AAAs in a GPS unit and found that each charge gives me about half the runtime of a fresh set of Duracells...a clunk on the head to whoever designs high-drain things around AAAs.)
Notwithstanding the well-documented self-discharge of NiMH, if your C- cells were stone cold less than a month out of a charger, I'd say either they had not been well charged or had self-discharge even higher than the norm. I once asked a random local salesdroid why the major brands rated their Cs and Ds no higher in mA-hrs than their AAs and was told that their chargers couldn't handle a higher rating...who knows.
Chip C Toronto
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