Whether or not most people realize it, single-use batteries have a pretty negative impact on the environment. Not only do they contain heavy metals, corrosive materials, and other chemicals, they are all too easy to just throw into the trash with everything else, thereby creating more long-term environmental problems (even though yes, you can recycle batteries). Rechargeable batteries, on the other hand, have a lower environmental impact, and they're more cost-effective. But how does the average consumer know which are the best rechargeable batteries?
Read on for everything you need to know about rechargeable household batteries, and for a few of the best rechargeable AA and AAA batteries on the market.
Why are rechargeable batteries better for the environment?
The proof, as they say, is in the pudding. According to a study by UNIROSS in 2007, rechargeable batteries have 28 times less potential impact on global warming, 30 times less potential impact on air pollution, and 12 times less potential impact on water pollution, as compared to disposable batteries.
Rechargeable batteries also tend to be more cost-effective in the long run, as consumers will be less likely to pick up a new pack of disposable batteries when all they need to do is charge their existing set. Additionally, rechargeable batteries are more widely accepted for recycling than disposable batteries are — all of which makes rechargeable batteries far more environmentally-friendly than single-use batteries.
What are the best rechargeable batteries?
The best rechargeable batteries are measured by a number of different desirable traits. The majority of today’s rechargeable batteries last much longer on a single charge than their disposable counterparts.
The best rechargeable batteries can hold their charge after months in storage, and are ready to use right out of the package. On top of all of that, almost all widely-recognized battery manufacturers now offer completely affordable rechargeable options. They are widely available in pharmacies, drugstores, and other major retailers like Target, Costco, and Walmart.
What are the most popular brands that make rechargeable batteries?
When one thinks of the word Duracell, the first thing that comes to mind is obviously batteries. So it’s no surprise that Duracell manufactures rechargeable versions of its batteries in all of the most popular battery sizes. The company also sell chargers and pre-charged batteries that cost just a bit more than Duracell’s normal batteries.
The Energizer Bunny has also joined the rechargeable renaissance by offering a range of common rechargeable battery sizes. Energizer also sells pre-charged versions and plug-in chargers.
Panasonic also makes rechargeable batteries, and the brand boasts that its batteries are rechargeable up to 1,500 times and reliable in low temperatures.
What is the best rechargeable battery on the market?
According to Business Insider, the best rechargeable battery on the market overall is the Panasonic Eneloop 2100 Cycle Ni-MH Rechargeable Battery. These batteries are affordable, come with a one-year warranty, and are consistent when it comes to performance. These batteries are advertised with a 2,100 cycle lifespan, which means they can be charged up to 2,100 times.
While this has yet to be tested in its entirety, the company’s track record of durability and affordability speaks for itself. At $18.99 for a four-pack of AAs, these batteries are fairly expensive as far as batteries are concerned, though they can be found at most major retailers, including Amazon.
What are the most eco-friendly rechargeable batteries?
Energizer strikes again with its basic, no-frills rechargeable AA batteries. Unlike some of the other rechargeable batteries on the market, Energizer rechargeable batteries are made of 4 percent recycled batteries. Energizer’s AAs also come pre-charged, and are cited as being low self-discharging, which means they can last for up to a year in storage while still maintaining their charge. They come in at about $12.79 for a four-pack of AAs and are sold at most places where batteries are sold.
What are the most affordable rechargeable batteries?
If you’re looking for a cheap and reliable option on rechargeable batteries, you don’t have to look very hard. A good, old fashioned Google search will take you right to Amazon.com, where you can find its tried-and-true AmazonBasics Rechargeable Batteries. These batteries have a surprisingly large 2,400 mAh capacity, according to Review Geek.
The outlet notes that Amazon does not specify how many charge cycles the batteries can take before they’re tapped out entirely. Most reviews are fairly complementary, though an inconsistency when it comes to performance and random loss of charge has been mentioned by consumers. That said, you can’t beat the price at around $14.99 for a four-pack of AAs.
Whatever your rechargeable battery needs might be, rest assured that there are plenty of options out there. It’s also important to note that as more retailers and manufacturers adopt a greater appreciation for the environmental sensibilities of their consumers, the better and more affordable these low-impact options are likely to become.