Rechargeable batteries have many advantages, such as their convenience, enhanced performance and environmental benefits. However, in order to get the most out of rechargeable options and ensure they maintain a decent charge for as long as possible, it is important to store them correctly.
Different types of rechargeable battery need different types of storage procedure. For example, in the case of NiCDs – one of the most popular rechargeable varieties – it is recommended that you completely drain the batteries before storing them. Leaving NiCDs on the charger for extended periods of time or storing them when charged is likely to cause them damage. For another type of popular rechargeable battery, the NiMH, manufacturers have suggested a storage charge of around 30%. It has also been suggested that charging and discharging NiMH batteries every few months, if you are storing them for any lengthy period, will help prolong their life.
For any variety of rechargeable, there are some universal basic storage tips that will help prevent your batteries become damaged while out of use. Firstly, place batteries in a lidded plastic container before storing, and then try to use them on a first in first out basis, to prevent batteries getting left unused at the back for long periods of time.
It is best to store batteries in a cool, dry environment, taking care not to expose them to excessively hot or cold temperatures. The ideal storage temperature for batteries is around 20°C but, as this is hard to maintain, ensuring they are always kept between 15°C and 30°C is probably a more important concern.
You will need to revive the batteries when you want to use them, even if you store them partially charged, but be careful not to overcharge them just because they have not been used for a while. You need only charge them for the stated time period and no longer.
Considered storage and usage of batteries will ensure that they continue to offer you a convenient and effective power option charge after charge.