Common Types of Rechargeable Batteries

If you would like to save on your battery purchase, you should look for rechargeable ones. While these batteries are usually more expensive than the non-rechargeable ones, they will help you save in the long run. Here are the common types of rechargeable batteries in the market.

NiMH Batteries
Nickel-metal hydride batteries are newer, similar and less toxic rechargeable battery than Nickel-Cadmium (Ni-Cd) batteries. NiMH batteries can contain three times the capacity of Ni-Cd batteries, and are great in high drain devices such as digital cameras and toys & games. They also have a slightly higher self-discharge rate than Ni-Cd, at 30%/month. NiMH cells have a nominal voltage of 1.2v. There are some new low self-discharge NiMH batteries available, we'll cover those at a later time.

Lithium Battery
There are many lithium button style batteries and majority of them are disposable. The most popular lithium batteries last 4-8 times longer in high drain devices than alkaline batteries. They also have super low discharge properties, and weigh less than their alkaline counterparts. These Lithium batteries also have 1.5V per cell.

Li-Ion Battery
Lithium-ion batteries are common in consumer electronics that require more performance than just regular AA's. They can be found in custom shapes and sizes that are best suitable for the device in mind. Li-Ion batteries also don't have the memory effect that Ni-Cd batteries have. Li-Ion batteries have a nominal voltage of 3.7v. They also offer a very low self-discharge rate of 5-10%/month.

If overheated or overcharged, Li-Ion cells can heat up and even have cells rupture. In some cases, they may catch fire. Li-Ion batteries last longer if they are frequently charged instead of run all the way down to empty. The batteries should not be stored in full discharge state. If the voltage drops below 2.4 to 2.9v per cell it won't accept a charge anymore. Watch to know more about batteries.

Li-Po Battery
 Lithium Polymer batteries are another type of lithium battery. The batteries do not normally come in a hard plastic case as lithium ion batteries. They are very popular in the RC (Remote Control) industries. Instead of being placed in metal or plastic hard shells, they are manufactured in pouches. The pouches allow the batteries to expand slightly when they are under large load.

Li-Po batteries can be found with ratings of 20-60C. This means they can be discharged at 20-60 times their capacity per hour. Fully charged Li-Po's are 4.23v per cell. Their nominal voltage is 3.7v per cell. Packs range from 1-8cells. The batteries at are normally wired in series to increase the voltage for whatever application they are manufactured for.