Monday, May 27, 2013

What Are the Types of Batteries & How To Care For Them?

A few types of batteries are: Sealed Lead Acid, Flooded Lead Acid, NiCad, NiMH, Alkaline, Silver Oxide, Lithium, Mercury(not mfg. in US any more), Manganese-Dioxide, Zinc-Air. 

NiCad (Nickel Cadmium) & NiMH (Nickel Metal Hydride) Batteries: 
Nickel Cadmium and Nickel Metal Hydride batteries by nature need to be "deep cycled" (fully discharged) before being placed back in their charger. Deep cycling your battery will help your NiCad battery maintain its maximum performance. 

The NiMH and Li-ion chemistry is most severely affected by hot storage and operation. Among the Li-ion family, the cobalt has an advantage over the manganese (spinel) in terms of storage at elevated temperatures. 
Always "initialize" brand new batteries. To initialize, let your battery stay in the charger approximately 50% (we say at least 14 to 16 hours) longer than a normal charge. Only perform initialization on the first Charge. Wait until your equipment signals "low battery" before placing the battery back into it's charger. 
Failure to "deep cycle" NiCd batteries will result in "memory" buildup. Memory will reduce the amount of energy you can draw each time you use the battery. It will also shorten your battery's overall cycle life. Never leave your battery in it's charger longer than the recommended charging time. Newer chargers have indicator lights which signal charging has completed and revert to a trickle charge when full charge is reached. To prevent memory buildup, immediately remove the battery when the charge cycle is finished. NiCd batteries can be stored up to two years without suffering from significant cycle loss. If you plan to store your batteries for an extended period, it is recommended to recharge your batteries every 90 days. 

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