Probably to dumbest question in the world but...

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MiniKiller
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Probably to dumbest question in the world but...

Hi guys,

I just bought my first house and have what I would guess is the noobiest question in the world. I have some spots on my fence that have tiny solar panels that light up at night. They all work but one, so I pulled it down and found it to also house a single aa battery. It’s green and reads ni-cd 400mah 1.2v. Where do I go from here? Do I need that exact model or can I use the newer ones that are I think ni-mh? Also I thought since it charges from the sun I could just put a new one in but I guess I need to charge it first as well? Sorry I realize how bad this must be but I’m lost right now and google doesn’t help because I don’t understand all the numbers and models and what not.

Thank you

Joe

vwpieces
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Congrats on the house!!
And Welcome to BLF.

http://www.all-battery.com/1CardTenergyAA1000mAhNiCdButtonTopRechargeableBatteries-21045.aspx

Capacity shouldn’t matter.
Just try one before seeking chargers.

vwpieces
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Stick with nicd as they don’t care about being on a charger all day long. Nimh need to be turned off as they complete a charge to achieve full life.

Angler
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If one is out the others are probably soon to go.

May as well snap up a 12 pack or more if needed as you really can’t beat the price for the ones linked below (12 for $12) and Tenergy are good quality cells. Better than paying ~$5 for one then needing another soon after, then another, then another… Big Smile

https://www.amazon.com/Combo-Tenergy-Rechargeable-Batteries-Intermatic/d...

MiniKiller
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Thank you guys very much. Those batteries look to be the way to go and changing them all at the same time is a good idea, I had that thought to so glad I’m not alone in the thinking. The most confusing part for me is the charging portion. Sites say charge but not full or turn off when and if. That sort of yak makes my brain want to explode haha I originally thought I could buy and just put in. Boy Oh boy!

Vegas LED Fan
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According to this source https://www.yoursolarlink.com/blog/replacing-nicd-rechargeables-with-nim... you can replace the NiCd batteries with NiMH batteries. The lifetime for the NiCd is 2 years which is pretty short and they have a memory effect that can shorten the life even more. Every rechargeable battery deteriorates with time and the number of times you recharge it. I never even thought about it when I bought a bunch of second-hand solar lights for my Christmas display. I replaced all of the batteries with NiMH regardless of what came in the light, NiCd or NiMH. They were out there for about two months with no problems. I bought my batteries from China – BTY brand from Toyofmine an eBay seller. I’m skeptical of the 3000 mAh rating for them but they work fine in solar lights. Price was around 75 cents each, shipping included. Compare that to any that you see in local stores for dollars each.

If you own a NiCd and a NiMH charger, just charge the cells before you first install them. The come charged but maybe not fully charged. NiMH cells lose their charge much slower than NiCd so that is one more reason for using them.

wstrachan
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Small solar panels atop landscape and decorative lights aren’t capable of putting back more than a few hundred mah (in a day) into the cells they run off at night. Having said that, IKEA sells a line of rechargeable 2400 mah cells that are really Panasonic Eneloops made for them. If i remember right, they are $7 a pack of 4 which is a great deal.
Energizer rechargeables would work too.

light addict....yeah I've got the bug.

Haikelite MT07S
Imalent DT70
Klarus XT12GT
Olight javelin mx3x
thrunite tn32 ut
acebeam k60
many, many others...

Pablo de Llama
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Try low capacity NiMH cells, they are more robust than high capacity cells when being dumb charged and discharged by these solar lights. Plus, they’re cheaper! 

A good example would be the Tan coloured low capacity Ladda cells that Ikea sells, which are equivalent to “eneloop Lite” cells.

MiniKiller
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AHHH and a counterpoint to the above points! I’m most definitely ocd when it comes to stuff like this. I can’t afford the best but I want the best possible at the lowest price haha. Which is why I want to avoid buying a charger so much. Which model is best to buy and just put in my solar panel without need for a charger? I can take a picture of what I need them for if you all like

Pulsar
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I have had really good luck with Tenergy cells, and at $1 a pop you cant really go wrong. You shouldnt need an external charger for them, thats the whole point of solar lights. and in reality, if you need to change them out every two years, $1 each isnt going to break the bank to keep good cells in them

MiniKiller
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Yah I think I’m going to try those and replace all the batteries at once as suggested. There’s a total of 10 so for the price I can’t beat that 12 pack, and if they don’t live up to the hype well then I just lost out on two foot long’s from subway haaha

Pulsar
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MiniKiller wrote:
if they don’t live up to the hype well then I just lost out on two foot long’s from subway haaha

Thats probably one of the best ways to look at it haha

I have never used their nimh or nicd, but I have used tons of tenergy rcr123a lifepos, like probably 50+ over the years, and they have all been of consistent quality and never had a dud