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Navy salad
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Navy salad
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PostWed Oct 11, 2017 12:47 pm 
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InFlight wrote:
If you can still charge the lithium's to over 1.5 volts, should be fine for use.

Careful here! Most 1.5 volt Lithium batteries (often called Lithium "primary" or "Lithium metal" batteries) cannot be safely recharged! I realize there are people who ignore this advice and manage to induce a charge, but you are taking a fire-risk by trying to charge non-rechargeable lithiums.

Most rechargeable Lithium batteries (like for a phone, etc) are "Lithium Ion" or "Lithium polymer" batteries and are not 1.5 volts (they generally range from 3.6 to 4.2 volts since they use a different battery chemistry).
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Regarding what to do with used batteries, I like to use them in places that accept a single battery, like a wireless mouse, etc (unless you can confirm you have two used batteries with equal remaining charge, otherwise your device will typically perform based on the condition of the weakest battery).
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DIYSteve
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PostWed Oct 11, 2017 12:52 pm 
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Navy salad wrote:
Careful here! Most 1.5 volt Lithium batteries (often called Lithium "primary" or "Lithium metal" batteries) cannot be safely recharged! I realize there are people who ignore this advice and manage to induce a charge, but you are taking a fire-risk by trying to charge non-rechargeable lithiums.

Correct up.gif Pretty sure that applies to all Li 1.5V (nominal) cells. Note that I referred them as "Lithium/Fe" cells in my prior post.
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Riverside Laker
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PostWed Oct 11, 2017 7:18 pm 
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Half-full batteries are like half-full fuel canisters. We just use 'em, sometimes bringing a couple used canisters or batteries. In a head lamp, batteries last a couple years, and rechargeables in a GPS receiver.
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DIYSteve
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PostWed Oct 11, 2017 7:58 pm 
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Riverside Laker wrote:
Half-full batteries are like half-full fuel canisters.

That metaphor applies only to non-rechargeable cells.

A half-full NiMH cell is like a half-full water bottle. Fill it up and start your next trip with a full bottle.

Riverside Laker wrote:
In a head lamp, batteries last a couple years


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Luc
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PostWed Oct 11, 2017 8:50 pm 
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I get the overall mssg here.  And I'm game, for sure.

But can I ask; have I been off that the (well marketed) silver Energizer Lithium Ultras are the (maybe not?) the best?  Longest lasting, and lightest?  I haven't thought of them as alkis.

All of the above, incl responses that are per my question (what to do with the half-drained non-rechargables) makes total sense.  Esp Rumi and immediately prior.

But did I drink some koolaid and they're not superior, or is it that I was right that they are superior for the disposables, but I should look at the premium rechargables?

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GNGSTR
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puzzlr
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PostThu Oct 12, 2017 12:02 am 
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It hasn't been mentioned yet so I'll add that you should not discard used batteries in the trash. Save them up and once a year swing by one of the Hazardous Waste Disposal Sites and drop them off for free. I have never had to wait in a line for a small item like this. Check the schedule - they're not open every day.

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Cyclopath
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PostThu Oct 12, 2017 6:58 pm 
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I used to use a hand-held GPS.  It took two AA batteries.  I'm a numbers guy, I like having data, I want a track record for every hike I've done.  (I turn them into a map of all my hikes and bike rides.)

With the particular GPS I used last, I would need about 1.5 to 1.75 pairs of batteries to get through a full hiking day.  When I hiked from Cascade Pass to Stehekin, I planned to take much longer than I did and make side trips, so I packed at least a dozen pairs of AAs.  When they'd go dead, I'd toss them back into my pack.  I had things organized such that there was one zipper pouch for batteries, that meant I needed a way to know the living from the dead.

My solution was a rubber band around each pair of good/new batteries.  When I pulled the dead ones out of the GPS, they'd go unpaired back in the pack.  If they had a band around them, they were good.

Nowadays, I use a wrist watch with GPS built into it.  It has maps, in the unit, so they work in the Pasayten where my phone doesn't.  My flash lights both charge via USB, although my head lamps don't.  Most of my other electronics also charge over USB.  My watch charges by USB, and GPS needs power.  I carry an Anker battery pack with a USB outlet, it's light, and will charge all my gear, I can get about 4 months GPS runtime on my watch with a single charge of the Anker.
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Navy salad
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Navy salad
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PostThu Oct 12, 2017 10:00 pm 
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Luc wrote:
have I been off that the (well marketed) silver Energizer Lithium Ultras are the (maybe not?) the best?  Longest lasting, and lightest?

I can't speak specifically to Energizer brand Lithiums vs other Lithiums, but I think in general the (non-rechargeable) Lithium batteries do last significantly longer (and cost significantly more) than Alkalines or NiMH batteries, but I seldom use them since they're not enough better than good quality rechargeable NiMH's for me to justify the cost increase.

Personally, I like the Amazon Basics rechargeable NiMH baatteries (which can power my GPS for something like 15 hours).
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InFlight
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PostFri Oct 13, 2017 7:56 am 
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The Energizer Ultimate Lithium are Lithium & Iron Disulfide battery.  They have a very high storage life and higher energy density than standard alkaline batteries.  For infrequently used items they could have their uses.  These are not LI Ion rechargeable.

NIMH are the best rechargeable in AA or AAA sizes. The down side of NiMH batteries is they self discharge typically 30% per month, so they don't have a long storage time after charge.  Typically are good for 300-500 recharge cycles.

Lithium Ion batteries have the highest energy density of any rechargeable.  Which is why they are used in you phones and other applications.  They are available in AA battery size, but they are not likely the best choice. These really work best with an active battery protections circuits; so the standalone use is a questionable choice (AA).  Low discharge rate (~5% per month) and good for about 2000 recharge cycles.

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I went to the woods because I wished to live deliberately...  ― Henry David Thoreau
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Jaberwock
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PostFri Oct 13, 2017 8:57 am 
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If I have to use AA or AAA I use Eneloop NiMH rechargeable.  My headlamps and flashlights all take rechargeable lithium 18650 batteries which I couldn't be happier with.
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cartman
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PostMon Oct 16, 2017 6:01 pm 
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Tru Value Hardware also has battery disposal containers.

Sears has battery testers for under $10.


Here's the deal, all:  if I have to become some sort of battery expert to use a smart charger and Eneloops, and pay for the "privilege", I'm not going to do it.  I'll buy the lightweight disposables 8 for a buck at Dollar Tree.

I purchased a "smart" charger a few years ago and the damn thing was so involved and complicated I said forget it and sold it.

Now if I can learn the details in say, an hour or three, then I'm willing to give it a shot.  We are speaking of batteries here--this shouldn't be complicated.  I'd like to save money, help the environment, and have long-lasting batteries like most of you; just as long as it isn't ridiculously involved to get there.

So are there one or two online sources that will tell me best smart charger, batteries and the other facts I need to know?  And will said charger be straightforward and easy to use?  Because if I have to take days to become some sort of battery guru, it's not going to happen.  I'll go read a good book or research mtn trips instead.
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Windstorm
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PostTue Oct 17, 2017 11:04 am 
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cartman wrote:
Here's the deal, all:  if I have to become some sort of battery expert to use a smart charger and Eneloops, and pay for the "privilege", I'm not going to do it.

A complicated smart charger isn't required. This is the one I have and it's really simple to use. Put in the batteries, plug it into the wall, and when the lights go off, they're charged. Works for AA and AAA batteries.

https://www.amazon.com/Panasonic-K-KJ17KHCA4A-Individual-Rechargeable-Batteries/dp/B00JHKSL1O
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DIYSteve
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PostTue Oct 17, 2017 9:55 pm 
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cartman, it took me less than one hour to figure out all the features my smart charger, although 98% of my use is simple charging mode, 500mA for AAA, 700mA for AA. A person with average intelligence can learn that in 5 minutes or less.

A smart charger w/readout is not necessary. The biggest benefit of a smart charger w/ readout is knowing how much capacity you use on each trip, which (as I mentioned in a prior thread) is great info when planning for a long trip.

InFlight wrote:
The down side of NiMH batteries is they self discharge typically 30% per month, so they don't have a long storage time after charge.

That's true only for non-LSD NiMH cells. Most NiMH cell users on this forum use Eneloop LSD cells. A typical fully charged Eneloop cell self-discharges roughly 7% the first month, 2% the 2nd month and eventually settles down to <1% SD rate per month. Eneloop claims 15% self-discharge rate after one year -- in other words, a fully charged Eneloop cell will have 85% capacity after one year. Tests by candlepowerforum battery nerds and my experience confirms that. See, e.g., http://www.candlepowerforums.com/vb/showthread.php?149804-Eneloop-Self-Discharge-study
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