Lithium vs NiMH Battery for Storage in Remote Control?

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killswitch
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Lithium vs NiMH Battery for Storage in Remote Control?

Hello. I had AC remote control that was damaged due to 2 AAA alkaline batteries leakage in compartment. I thought maybe I should put 2 NiMH batteries with LSD and forget about remote? I use AC only in summer but might use this winter and regardless I need remote control to have batteries inside.

I later heard that in rare cases NiMH batteries can leak so I thought maybe I should put 2 AAA lithium batteries and won’t worry about remote control becoming damaged?

flydiver
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Never had a NiMh leak. Been using them for a very long time. The are good NiMh, and lots of poor ones. You should be fine with decent brand names, especially Made in Japan.
I’ve had any number of alkaline leak and some electronics destroyed. Try to avoid them if at all possible.
Not had a primary lithium leak, but don’t have a lot of experience with them. Pretty good reputation.

If the remote isn’t going to be used for a good while, pull the batteries, whatever you use.

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ChrisGarrett
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Just use real Eneloops or Fujitsu AAs and be done with it.

Easy-peasy.

Chris

Mandrake50
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THIS. is what Panasonic says.

My experience based on 25 plus years of use is that I have never had one leak. I probably have 200 plus NiMH batteries. I use them in flashlights, radios, clocks, remote controls…
in fact, I seldom use anything else. So, yeah, still a small sample size, but good enough for me to say that your remote for the AC will almost certainly be fine using NiMH cells.
Simply take them out and check/charge them periodically.

Worst case, they are way, way, less likely to leak than alkaline cells.

Lithium AA cells would likely be fine too. But, they are expensive and single use. They are also not recommended for some devices due to their higher initial voltage. Though I have not had any issues using them (so far). They are used for things that I stash (mostly flashlights) and tend to forget about, but really want to work when needed. They are also good for situations where temperatures are going to be very low ( -30 F).

raccoon city
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I have heard of NiMH cells leaking, but from what I've read it's extremely rare, and it's not nearly as destructive as an alkaline leak.

I think it's best to just get high quality LSD cells like made-in-Japan Eneloops rather than dealing with expensive (non-rechargeable) Lithium cells.

zoulas
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I use Energizer lithium for remote controls. They last for ever.

For thermostats they last over five years.

Rechargeable should work well also.

I doubt you would see rechargeable batteries leak. Possible, yes, likely no.

Then again someone wone the $2B lottery and here we are talking about lithium batteries.

Correllux
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I agree with everyone…good NiMH low discharge cells and you should be fine. The only slight concern is if ambient temperatures are typically high then the cells may lose a little more of their charge over that long pause and they may start to “wear out” a little sooner, but you should still get lots of cycles and years of use even if that’s the case. The lithium metal cells are great and although I’ve seen some photos of them leaking, it’s possible those were fakes but there was no additional info on those. I’ve never had any of those leak and I’ve kept some in the car where summer temps often hit 60°C+ with the windows rolled up.

I have actually had some NiMH cells “leak” but it wasn’t anything like alkaline and there was no damage to contacts. Those were 15 years ago, maybe closer to 20, and some of the early crappy Energizer AAA that had been allowed to self discharge for a long time, were revived, and put into low drain use. I also had one early Duracell about that same time period that leaked but it was all contained under the wrapper. I was never sure what could have caused it other than some chemistry change from sitting discharged (and that Duracell was also often left on a dumb trickle charger for days on end….ugh).

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Only downsides of NiMh are:

1) cells being ruined from being drained completely flat by low current devices.
2) (very) slightly lower voltage, meaning some devices don’t like them.

killswitch
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flydiver wrote:
I’ve had any number of alkaline leak and some electronics destroyed. Try to avoid them if at all possible.

Are all alkalines like this or there are top-quality alkalines that are less likely to leak?

killswitch
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Correllux wrote:
I agree with everyone…good NiMH low discharge cells and you should be fine. The only slight concern is if ambient temperatures are typically high then the cells may lose a little more of their charge over that long pause and they may start to “wear out” a little sooner, but you should still get lots of cycles and years of use even if that’s the case. The lithium metal cells are great and although I’ve seen some photos of them leaking, it’s possible those were fakes but there was no additional info on those. I’ve never had any of those leak and I’ve kept some in the car where summer temps often hit 60°C+ with the windows rolled up.

We have 32C – 37C and 75%-80% humidity here in summer not far from coast. These were probably the main factors contributing t to internal circuit board and components oxidation in some areas inside the AC remote control.

60C+ where is this?

Correllux wrote:
I have actually had some NiMH cells “leak” but it wasn’t anything like alkaline and there was no damage to contacts. Those were 15 years ago, maybe closer to 20, and some of the early crappy Energizer AAA that had been allowed to self discharge for a long time, were revived, and put into low drain use. I also had one early Duracell about that same time period that leaked but it was all contained under the wrapper. I was never sure what could have caused it other than some chemistry change from sitting discharged (and that Duracell was also often left on a dumb trickle charger for days on end….ugh).

I still have these from early 2010s. Bought them for digital camera but was disappointed how they would self-discharge the next day being used or unused.

raccoon city
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killswitch wrote:
flydiver wrote:

I've had any number of alkaline leak and some electronics destroyed. Try to avoid them if at all possible.

Are all alkalines like this or there are top-quality alkalines that are less likely to leak?

I'm sure that some alkalines are more likely to leak than others, but if you hate an electronic device, tell it that you hate it by installing some "alkaleak" batteries in them.

In other words, leaking is what all alkaline batteries are famously known for.

It's just a matter of time before any specific brand of alkaline batteries will eventually leak.

acobp
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I never had NIMH leak. I have a case with NiCD batteries which get tiny amount of white oxide on negative pole but it isn’t destructive and it is easy for cleaning.
I have many cases and destroyed devices from alkaline leaks but I have never a case that Maxell batteries leaks, alkaline or zinc carbon.

flydiver
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killswitch wrote:
flydiver wrote:
I’ve had any number of alkaline leak and some electronics destroyed. Try to avoid them if at all possible.

Are all alkalines like this or there are top-quality alkalines that are less likely to leak?

That’s been asked. Unfortunately no ‘good/reliable’ answer. Brands that seemed solid 5-10 years ago may not be anymore.
There seems to be a consistent trend to cheapen a lot of products to the point that they start to fail. I call it engineering and manufacturing by stupidity+greed+world economic forces.

As you already found out, the Camelions are crap. Pretty much any NiMh that advertises capacity above 2500mAh are not good. Even the ‘good ones’ like Eneloop that have 2450mAh don’t last nearly as long as the 2000mAh cells. This is a known fact even Eneloop admits.

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lampliter
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Fujitsu,made in Japan.

"The marvel of all history is the patience with which men and women submit to burdens unnecessarily laid upon them by their governments.” ~ U.S. Senator William H. Borah (1865-1940) affectionately known as the "Lion of Idaho"

BlueSwordM
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Yes, just put 2 Eneloops in and everything will be fine Smile

My very own high current Beryllium Copper springs Gen 3:
http://budgetlightforum.com/node/67401
Liitokala Aliexpress Stores Battery Fraud: http://budgetlightforum.com/node/60547

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gravelmonkey wrote:
2) (very) slightly lower voltage, meaning some devices don’t like them.

Yup, some remotes are picky and will not work with lower voltage cells, like partially discharged NiMH, which means you’ll end up having to recharge them sooner. It’s worth a try though.

I’m using the Tenavolts AA Li-Ion cells in my universal remote that gets the most usage in the household. They maintain steady 1.5V output throughout the entire discharge cycle. Alas, these are not cheap and require a proprietary charger. It may be cheaper for the OP to just buy some regular Lithium AA/AAA cells instead.

flydiver
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Pete7874 wrote:
gravelmonkey wrote:
2) (very) slightly lower voltage, meaning some devices don’t like them.

Yup, some remotes are picky and will not work with lower voltage cells, like partially discharged NiMH, which means you’ll end up having to recharge them sooner. It’s worth a try though.

I’m using the Tenavolts AA Li-Ion cells in my universal remote that gets the most usage in the household. They maintain steady 1.5V output throughout the entire discharge cycle. Alas, these are not cheap and require a proprietary charger. It may be cheaper for the OP to just buy some regular Lithium AA/AAA cells instead.

I’m also trying that out. Alas, the special deals that were on when these first came out has not been seen for well over a year. A couple other brands I’ve tried (USB charge), weren’t nearly as good.
When they ‘go’, they are……gone. 0 volts until charged.
For properly chosen applications, I like them, but, at the old cost. Wink

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Mandrake50
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killswitch wrote:
flydiver wrote:
I’ve had any number of alkaline leak and some electronics destroyed. Try to avoid them if at all possible.

Are all alkalines like this or there are top-quality alkalines that are less likely to leak?

I have had all of them that I have used leak. Duracell, Eveready, Rayovac, and maybe worst the Kirkland cells from Costco.
Just the other day I opened a box that had 16 Duracell AAAs n it. They had never been used and stored at right around 20 C. 15 to 25% humidity. In a dark area inside a dry cardboard box. Every darn one of them showed signs of leakage. EVERY ONE!
This after about 3 years… they are advertised to have a 10 year shelf life.
I don’t use any of them unless it is for an application where I will use a device that quickly drains them fully, then take them out.

Mandrake50
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killswitch wrote:
Correllux wrote:
I agree with everyone…good NiMH low discharge cells and you should be fine. The only slight concern is if ambient temperatures are typically high then the cells may lose a little more of their charge over that long pause and they may start to “wear out” a little sooner, but you should still get lots of cycles and years of use even if that’s the case. The lithium metal cells are great and although I’ve seen some photos of them leaking, it’s possible those were fakes but there was no additional info on those. I’ve never had any of those leak and I’ve kept some in the car where summer temps often hit 60°C+ with the windows rolled up.

We have 32C – 37C and 75%-80% humidity here in summer not far from coast. These were probably the main factors contributing t to internal circuit board and components oxidation in some areas inside the AC remote control.

I still have these from early 2010s. Bought them for digital camera but was disappointed how they would self-discharge the next day being used or unused.


Those are not Low Self Discharge (LSD) cells. Which is what you need for something like a remote. Eneloop claims they will hold 85% charge after a year or two.
If you go NiMH, make sure you get LSD cells. NON LSD cells often have higher capacity ratings, but they are basically charge and use immediately cells.
Mandrake50
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Pete7874 wrote:
gravelmonkey wrote:
2) (very) slightly lower voltage, meaning some devices don’t like them.
Yup, some remotes are picky and will not work with lower voltage cells, like partially discharged NiMH, which means you’ll end up having to recharge them sooner. It’s worth a try though.

I have NiMH cells in a dozen remotes, they all work fine. Over the years I have used them in at least a dozen more. There may be exceptions, of course, but not enough that it is not worthwhile trying the Eneloops for the OP.

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I only use my AC remote in summer. In winter it snows here, so I put pieces of paper between the batteries and the contact points. This saves me from removing the batteries and storing them separately.

Im using cheap Alkaleaks without issue, as they dont make contact for 9 months out of the year. Been using the same Alkaleaks for 2 years now.

otoh, NiMh also work fine, but they need to be LowSelfDischarge type, as in Eneloop, not the old type that have HighSelfDischarge

Lithium primaries also work fine, they just cost more…

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Eneloops.

That is all.

flydiver
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jon_slider wrote:
I only use my AC remote in summer. In winter it snows here, so I put pieces of paper between the batteries and the contact points. This saves me from removing the batteries and storing them separately.

Im using cheap Alkaleaks without issue, as they dont make contact for 9 months out of the year. Been using the same Alkaleaks for 2 years now.

That brings up and interesting question, and an observation;
1. Those cells are [Heavy Duty], so technically they are not ‘alkaleaks’, they are zinc chloride. I’m not sure they have any advantage is the (non) leak department.
2. So, I suspect either you are simply lucky, or……the paper isolation ‘trick’ removes some minuscule electron path that facilitates the leaking. I don’t know. Do you have some insight?

My vote> you’re lucky. Wink
After all, it seems to be a very limited experiment, and they don’t leak ALL the time, just too damn frequently.

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Mandrake50
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I think, Just Lucky! The cells I had in the box were not connected to anything. They ALL leaked all over themselves. Sad I had to pitch 16 relatively new cells.

But, for some reason the original batteries that I have gotten for radios and remotes… mostly no name cells (likely zinc chloride) , have fared much better than the supposedly high quality name brand alkaline cells…
??

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I’ve never had a problem with a lithium primary, but don’t use many. I’m still barely started on an AA 8-pack purchased over a decade ago. Zero experience with AAA lithium primary.

Lithium ion cells have failed, but never leaked or caught fire.

I’ve had lithium poly lose lots of capacity and get puffy, but never worse than that before I disposed it them.

Alkalines have leaked in storage after partial usage and in devices, although so far no completely unused alkalines have leaked.

NiMh have never leaked. AAA’s are more problematic, and although none have become completely worthless, the capacity and self drain is terrible, often so bad that it’ll only charge if I partially charge it by shorting it with another AAA. I only keep those bad AAA’s (Energizer, GP, AmazonBasics) around as a sort of experiment. “9V” hasn’t been great either, and I want to say those were Tenergy. The exception so far is Eneloop and Fujitsu AAA’s. The only AA’s that have experienced terrible capacity is the ones that came with my old Garmin. Most are nearly a decade old, some are over 15 years old. My conclusion is that nimh AAA’s really need to be high quality or they won’t last long.

The low mode should be lower.

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NIMH in a remote is good, Lithium energizer is the best.

p.s. Since you are in israel you may have other brands of lithium AAA, besides energizer,   Here in usa, only energizers are available in stores, somehow energizer created monopoly on lithium aa, and aaa in usa,  

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My vote would be lithium primary for anything with extended storage requirements (provided the voltage is compatible). Using alkaline cells in the piezo igniter in our gas grill caused contact corrosion in a matter of a days, and I’d constantly have to clean the internal contacts to make it work. Switching to Energizer Ultimate resolved the issue, and after several months without any maintenance, it fires every time.

how crazy is this
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This thread is reminding me that it is time to do my annual charge of the NiMH batteries in my thermostat. Have an old set of AA made in Japan Amazon Basics 2450s with way to high of IR to be satisfactory in a flashlight. Work great in the thermostat. Large capacity and work for a very long time. I always charge them when the weather starts getting really cold out and I don’t remember if I ever have to charge them until the following winter.

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flydiver wrote:

There seems to be a consistent trend to cheapen a lot of products to the point that they start to fail. I call it engineering and manufacturing by stupidity+greed+world economic forces.

As you already found out, the Camelions are crap. Pretty much any NiMh that advertises capacity above 2500mAh are not good. Even the ‘good ones’ like Eneloop that have 2450mAh don’t last nearly as long as the 2000mAh cells. This is a known fact even Eneloop admits.

You think that only the adage “never attribute to malice that which is adequately explained by stupidity.” applies here? I think there’s collusion between batteries and electronics manufacturers involved to stimulate the need to replace batteries and electronics damaged by them. Planned obsolesce.

I have recently bought Panasonic BQ-CC17 charger and tried charging Sanyo XX 2450mAh in it. I am disappointed to some extent: https://budgetlightforum.com/comment/1891651#comment-1891651

alpg88 wrote:

NIMH in a remote is good, Lithium energizer is the best.

p.s. Since you are in israel you may have other brands of lithium AAA, besides energizer, Here in usa, only energizers are available in stores, somehow energizer created monopoly on lithium aa, and aaa in usa,

We have Energizers, sure, as well as VARTA but 2 batts range in cost around $10-$15.

how crazy is this wrote:
This thread is reminding me that it is time to do my annual charge of the NiMH batteries in my thermostat. Have an old set of AA made in Japan Amazon Basics 2450s with way to high of IR to be satisfactory in a flashlight. Work great in the thermostat. Large capacity and work for a very long time. I always charge them when the weather starts getting really cold out and I don’t remember if I ever have to charge them until the following winter.

Internal resistance issue? I have Sanyos XX 2450mAh and Panasonic BQ-CC17 does not want to charge them. Camelion charger did and I thought it will “fix” them but Panasonic charger still refuses to charge them: https://budgetlightforum.com/comment/1891651#comment-1891651

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It sounds like your Sanyos internal resistance has gone up too high to be accepted by the Panasonic.
Camelion has a LOT of chargers.
Which one do you have?

Some chargers will charge ANYTHING. Those can be useful for some circumstances. I have a very old Radio Shack (company out of business a good while ago) 4-cell/2-channel AA/AAA 6-hour/timed “dumb” charger. It will charge a PAIR of anything for 6 hours, even a dead battery.

Plus a Sanyo ‘sorta smart’ 2-cell/2-channel charger that will also charge a dead cell, but generally will terminate properly if the cell resistance isn’t too bad.
I mostly use both of these to boost dead cells so the smart charger will take them. If the smart charger starts having termination problems and the resistance is too high it’s recycle time.
Note – I consider the IR tests on slider-analyzing chargers to be very rough. I have a ZH-YU ZB106+ v1.3 that tests them far more accurately and reliably that I finally got, both for capacity and IR.

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Had camelion aa nicads arrive with about half of the 24 pack leaking.
Sent back.
Seller couldnt understand why he couldnt just send replacements for the leakers.
Since they were backup power for a cnc control i wouldnt take the chance.
Seen some fuzz but no damage in all my years of using nicd/nimh.
The leakers i saw were junk noname stuff or very old.
My remotes all have lsd nimh in them.only way to go.