Batteries – Daily Financial Tip

batteries - Nickel-Metal Hydride (NiMH) or alkalineBatteries can cost a small fortune if you use them a lot whether they be for emergency items or electronic devices. The first step you need to take is to determine which type of batteries you need to save the most money which will depend on what you are using them for. Here are two types that you may need and what they’re appropriate for:

If you go through a lot of batteries or have electronic equipment that are “high drain” devices, you’ll want to pick up rechargeable batteries. Rechargeable batteries have improved immensely over the years and can be charged hundreds of times giving you a much better value for your money than regular alkaline batteries.

The best type of rechargeable battery are the Nickel-Metal Hydride (NiMH) type. These replaced old-style NiCad rechargeable batteries and have a much higher capacity than NiCad’s do. Best of all, they don’t suffer from memory effect that could quickly shorten their life.

NiMH batteries are great for all-around use in basic electronics, but they have a high self-discharge rate (they’ll go dead after a few months even when you don’t use them) so they’re not good for emergency items such as flashlights or smoke detectors.

For those that don’t use a lot of batteries, then purchasing alkaline batteries is the best way to go. They’re inexpensive and give plenty of power. Opt for the generic alkaline brands as they’re nearly as good as brand-name alkaline batteries at a fraction of the cost.

Think about how often you buy new batteries. If you purchase new batteries more than once every 2 months or so, you’re probably better off purchasing rechargeable NiMH batteries. If not, make a note to always purchase generic alkaline batteries. Either way, you’ll end up spending a lot less on batteries than you otherwise would have.

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2 Responses to Batteries – Daily Financial Tip

  1. Nick says:

    There’s a handful of electronic devices we use on a regular basis that completely drain their batteries in 8-12 hours: a digitial voice recorder my wife uses in class, a Nintendo DS, and a digital camera. Alkaline batteries just for these would probably run us hundreds of dollars a year! My rule of thumb is that any device that produces sound or video (or both!) and doesn’t have a plug gets NiMH rechargeable batteries.

  2. Gloria says:

    I learned this the hard way months ago. Didn’t know a thing about batteries and their differences. Working on buying a recharable set.

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