Testing AA Batteries: Dollar Stores vs. Major Brands

Sjm9911

Super Active Member
May 31, 2018
11,933
Nj
Not watching it yet. But my money os on not doller store brand for important stuff. But for stuff the kids leave on, cheap batteries. Do I win?
 

Sjm9911

Super Active Member
May 31, 2018
11,933
Nj
And , i will add my own 2 cents. Some things, high end, or more technical spacific, have specs for batteries. So, only certain professional grade batteries xan be used. Yea, thats atually a thing. Now , i am thinking its more about leakage and heat retention. So , our SCBAs at work require a certian battery, still AA , or they void the warranty. The company that does the warranty works go further, to limit it to one type, as the other is more prone to leakage.
 

kcsa75

Super Active Member
Gold Supporting Member
Sep 9, 2013
5,708
Kansas City
Amazon has "Amazon Basics" batteries that are supposed to have a 10-year shelf life. From a price standpoint it's a no-brainer. Twenty-eight AA Duracells are about $21.50. One hundred AA Amazon Basics are $27.64.

I bought some for a couple flashlights and my bait bucket bubbler. So far so good.
 
Last edited:

Sjm9911

Super Active Member
May 31, 2018
11,933
Nj
Amazon has "Amazon Basics" batteries that are supposed to have a 10-year shelf life. From a price standpoint there it's a no-brainer. Twenty-eight AA Duracells are about $21.50. One hundred AA Amazon Basics are $27.64.

I bought some for a couple flashlights and my bait bucket bubbler. So far so good.
Just watch there 9 v , mine didn't fit in the smoke detectors. Hope they fixed it by now.
 

curt86iroc

Member
Sep 28, 2020
50
in this day and age, there is really no need to buy single use batteries. name brand rechargeable AA and AAAs are a good investment and last for 100s of cycles...
 

jmkay1

2004 Fleetwood/Coleman Utah
Oct 10, 2013
7,601
Northern Virginia
in this day and age, there is really no need to buy single use batteries. name brand rechargeable AA and AAAs are a good investment and last for 100s of cycles...
I tried rechargeables many years ago but found they never lasted as long as regular batteries and was constantly changing batteries out way more than I would. Also even had a couple devices not work at all with rechargeables. Grant you batteries have come a long way now hopefully they work better then what they did. I'd be curious to see if someone did a test with rechargeables vrs regular.
 

curt86iroc

Member
Sep 28, 2020
50
I tried rechargeables many years ago but found they never lasted as long as regular batteries and was constantly changing batteries out way more than I would. Also even had a couple devices not work at all with rechargeables. Grant you batteries have come a long way now hopefully they work better then what they did. I'd be curious to see if someone did a test with rechargeables vrs regular.
i've had fantastic luck with EBL batteries! https://www.eblofficial.com/collections/aa-aaa-batteries
 

Patrick w

Active Member
Aug 13, 2021
550
And , i will add my own 2 cents. Some things, high end, or more technical spacific, have specs for batteries. So, only certain professional grade batteries xan be used. Yea, thats atually a thing. Now , i am thinking its more about leakage and heat retention. So , our SCBAs at work require a certian battery, still AA , or they void the warranty. The company that does the warranty works go further, to limit it to one type, as the other is more prone to leakage.
Yep. Even maglite has it's warranty. It will only warranty it if you used Duracell and enegizier alkaline. Once the battery leaks it's kaput. Can't get it out of the cylinder.
 

Patrick w

Active Member
Aug 13, 2021
550
I tried rechargeables many years ago but found they never lasted as long as regular batteries and was constantly changing batteries out way more than I would. Also even had a couple devices not work at all with rechargeables. Grant you batteries have come a long way now hopefully they work better then what they did. I'd be curious to see if someone did a test with rechargeables vrs regular.
There are basically 4 types now .
Nicad (most durable but likes to be deep cycled, actually kinda hard to find). Low capacity. Surprisingly good for solar ornamental lights. Mostly replaced with nimh.
Nimh: basically two flavors. High drain/high performance: use for things like big flashlights, motors, fans, etc. Typical self discharges in a few months.
Low drain/low discharge types are good for about a year or so. Good for things like remotes, head lamps, etc, and kids low drain toys.
The problem with the low drain is cost. For a pack of 4, you can get like a dozen brand name AA. For things like remotes, it's a high upfront so that you can charge every... 8 months? However they don't leak... Which is a big deal!

I've been seeing some lithium ion
 

NLB

Active Member
Silver Supporting Member
Oct 10, 2021
472
West Palm Beach, Florida
Like jmkay said, tried em years ago. Never could keep up with the kids usage. Maybe now that it’s just me I’ll give recharging another try.
 

xxxapache

Super Active Member
Jul 30, 2008
4,446
I bought about 10 of these inexpensive rechargeables just for the kind of flashlight in the pic. I have half a dozen of those lights here and there. Those batteries are now 5+ years old and still holding a good charge. 20220509_134925.jpg
 

Patrick w

Active Member
Aug 13, 2021
550
Like jmkay said, tried em years ago. Never could keep up with the kids usage. Maybe now that it’s just me I’ll give recharging another try.
Rechargeables can get damaged from over discharge. I've had a bunch that it happened to, and it wasn't that I cycled them a bunch either.
 

Patrick w

Active Member
Aug 13, 2021
550
they make special chargers that can manage this for you...
Don't work because it's not the charger. It's leaving it in some random device where the battery drains to zero for an extended period of time. I know about re awakening batteries, but even after a full charge they won't hold, or the charge in a min or two. Their goners. I capacity test mine with a lilokala engineer with cooling cycles in-between for the nimh, it don't matter. Some just become toast. Trick is to get them out and recharge them periodically.
 

Lug_Nut

Active Member
May 29, 2016
252
Mt. Wachusett area, MA
NiCd have fewer discharge-recharge cycle lifespan than other rechargeables. They're cheap because they are in less demand due to fewer cycles, less run time and not much of a cost savings than others.
NiMh have more cycles and usually more mAh. These have become more prevalent due to these two main reasons, and aren't all that much more than NiCd.
Li Ion have higher capacity (mAh), but require a specific charging protocol so are more common in electronics that are programmed to monitor and regulate the charging process (cellphones, laptops and such.

I've found that alkaline cells, the type that can't be re-charged, CAN be filled up. I've put nearly dead alkaline AA and AAA batteries into solar charged walkway lamps and have brought those back to a "good" reading when using my Sperry battery tester. Once charged they last seemingly as long as new alkalines in flashlights, head lamps, bicycle flashers and such.
That has prompted me to use a USB powered 'dumb' charger at work for the thrown-away alkalines I'm now using in my cordless mouse, desk clock, wall clocks, test meters, laser pointer. A 'smart charger' with selections for NiCd or NiMh won't even begin to charge alkalines, but a dumb unit works.
The alkalines aren't supposed to be rechargeable. They are supposed to bulge and leak and cause all kinds of havoc if re-charging is attempted.
Please don't tell them that or they might quit.
 

Patrick w

Active Member
Aug 13, 2021
550
Disagree about the lifespans. Nicads when cycled properly was in the thousands, as long as they didn't develope memory.
Nimh are almost the same price as you mentioned and they don't deal with the pesky cadmium part.
Didn't buddy L have an alkaline charger? I think they performed best when like the battery was at like greater than 60 percent...
 




Top