PDA

View Full Version : Rechargeable or Disposable Batteries: Which Do You Use???



OldRiverRunner
02-10-2012, 01:49 PM
In the 3 geocacher profiles that have been posted, which have provided information on some of our Board members, there is a question about whether they use disposable or rechargeable batteries for their GPS receivers. I noticed that in all three profiles to date, the answer was disposable. That really shocked me, because I had just assumed that most experienced cachers would be using rechargeable batteries.

I know that I personally have been using rechargeable batteries since about the 2nd month after I started geocaching. My primary reason for doing this was to cut the cost (over time) of the money I was spending on batteries, since rechargeables can be used over and over many times. As a testament to this, I am still using rechargeables that I bought in 2003! I keep a pair of rechargeables in my GPSr, and I always carry 4 extra batteries as spares - 2 additional rechargeables and 2 disposables. When my batteries die, I just put in the pair of recharged batteries and keep going. When I get home, I put the dead batteries on the charger and they are ready within a few hours to go back into my cache bag as spares. I carry the disposables on the rare occasion that I have been caching so long that my rechargeables die! It doesn't happen often, but it has happened! Usually after I have used the set in my GPSr for a long while and they are low in charge, and then I go on a long day of geocaching!

Anyway, it is human nature to assume that others who share a similar interest also do other things similarly. Like use rechargeable batteries! Well, the 3 profiles have made me question my assumption. So I have decided to post this poll to see what others use - rechargeable or disposable. I will be interested to see the results and your comments.

Cpdenton
02-10-2012, 03:04 PM
We use both. Both have their advantages as well. Obviously the savings over time and "Green" eco friendliness of rechargeable batteries are great advantages, but you have to remember that most rechargeable batteries are on;y 1.2 volt instead of 1.5 volt. This CAN go outside of the recommended voltages of some equipment and make them perform worse. Something to keep in mind.

OldRiverRunner
02-10-2012, 04:09 PM
... but you have to remember that most rechargeable batteries are on;y 1.2 volt instead of 1.5 volt. This CAN go outside of the recommended voltages of some equipment and make them perform worse. Something to keep in mind.

Good point. I remember reading in my owner's manual that rechargeable NiMH batteries could be used. I just went back and checked the manual again and it recommends using NiMH or lithium batteries "for best results". There is a setting in the GPSr for selecting the type of battery being used (Alkaline, Lithium, or rechargeable NiMH). Maybe this adjusts the unit for the voltage difference? I currently use a Garmin GPSmap 62st, but previously used a Garmin eTrex Vista and it had the same setting for battery type. I've never encountered any perceptible performance problems with using rechargeable batteries in these units.

Cpdenton
02-10-2012, 04:40 PM
You are right about the GPS. I have never seen any perceptible difference between any batteries used. In my head, I kept thinking about the Kodak Digital camera we have. It "could" use AA batteries. They will fit, and alkaline batteries worked OK, But with rechargeable batteries, it would barely take a picture. After a little research I found that the Kodak battery pack that the camera was supposed to be able to also use was 3.6 volts....

Well No Wonder it wouldn't work with the NiMH Batteries. 2.4 volts instead of 3.6, that will make a big difference!

So NOW, I know to check that ever important owner's manual!

Interesting thread and Poll, but what about a place to select both?

TnT
02-10-2012, 05:00 PM
I use disposables. I get them free, so cost isn't an issue. As has been said, rechargeables don't work well in cameras, so we don't bother to carry both anymore. What brand/type rechargeables is everyone using?

Jffok
02-10-2012, 06:52 PM
I use the rechargeable batteries. My GSP has the option of setting Alkaline, Lithium, or rechargeable NiMH. I don't think the Alkaline hold up very long and the Lithium or expensive. So rechargeable works best for my use. I use the Energizer brand. I carry 4 extra batteries in my pack.

pshelto
02-10-2012, 10:22 PM
I was using disposable energizers, but after my last run with Lithium batteries, I may switch to those permanently. I used rechargeable for a while, but I got tired of keeping up with extras and they didn't seem to last as long as my normal disposables.

rklmbl
02-11-2012, 04:50 AM
We use disposable Lithium batteries (or whatever is the very longest life battery when we buy them). BUT when in the car, we keep all the GPS's plugged in to the car. The batteries last a very long time that way...months. And the screen is lit up which helps a lot. The old Garmin CS60X that I use turns on the minute we get in the car and stays on until we arrive home because I track geomiles with it. Been doing this for years and can't remember for sure but we don't buy batteries very often at all...maybe buy a package once a year for all the GPSs.

OldRiverRunner
02-11-2012, 07:38 AM
What brand/type rechargeables is everyone using?

I use Duracell rechargeable NiMH AA batteries. Like I said earlier, I've had the same batteries since 2003. Yes, they don't last as long as they used to, but since I carry an extra pair, that isn't a problem. They do last many, many hours of use, but since they have paid for themselves long ago, I am quite content with their charge life! :p

jclaudii
02-13-2012, 08:33 AM
We use Rechargeable NiMH. We had some Rayovacs that we got with a charger when we started caching, but those batteries have been retired to duty as wireless mouse batteries and such. With kid toys, I try and find the good deals when the batteries are on clearance and pick up a couple packs (usually with a charger) so things that make noise for kids can keep on doing it without me having to use the good Alkaline batteries or the good rechargeable's in kids toys in a pinch.

I now have a pack of Energizers that seem to be pretty good, we've been using them for a while and if I remember to pull the old one's out and put them on charge we rarely use disposable ones.

We also use a usb adapter in the Jeep to keep the gps on vehicle power while were in the vehicle. This also lets us keep backlight up on maximum.

I've seen specials on ebay and on amazon for no name brand nimh's and I always say I'm going to buy a pack of 20 for 7 bucks or whatever the special is to see how long those will last.

Buckshot/MamaLlama
02-13-2012, 02:59 PM
We use disposables for the most part. We do have some rechargeable batteries that my wife uses for her camera. I must admit though that my problem with the rechargeable batteries is that it is just one more thing to worry about taking care of. It is easier to just grab the disposables and go or pick up some more while out and about. That, and I have only ever used off brands that did not seem to last as long as I think they should. I have been considering forking out the cash to get the good kind and save in the long run. We will see what happens. Good poll!

Buckshot/MamaLlama
02-13-2012, 02:59 PM
We use disposables for the most part.  We do have some rechargeable batteries that my wife uses for her camera.  I must admit though that my problem with the rechargeable batteries is that it is just one more thing to worry about taking care of.  It is easier to just grab the disposables and go or pick up some more while out and about.  That, and I have only ever used off brands that did not seem to last as long as I think they should.  I have been considering forking out the cash to get the good kind and save in the long run.  We will see what happens.  Good poll!

captaincooder
02-14-2012, 08:59 PM
I keep a bucket of batteries in my vehicle because I am a gadget fiend. Always have backup disposable alkalines in most flavors, and disposable lithiums in AA for my PLB's and cameras. But my go-to batteries for everything else are rechargables. I've used Rayovac Platinum, Engergizer and Westinghouse. I've used them so much as to wear them out. I keep a 12V rapid charger in the truck that will charge four batteries in about fifteen minutes. The downside to rechargeables is that they don't hold a charge as long. But I just switch out and recharge in no time.

Since upgrading to DeLorme PN-60w, they came with their own proprietary rechargeable Lithium batteries that are fantastic. They recharge when I connect the device to the 12V charger and last all day. Hooray!