So, you’re in the mood to buy some rechargeable lithium batteries huh? But you want to make sure you don’t get burned after the purchase, is that it?
Well read on…because this post is for YOU!
Also, know right away that I’m not referring to lithium battery packs, that are often found in cell phones, cordless phones or digital camcorders. These are individual batteries that are used to power a variety of items, including (but not limited to) remote controls, electronic cigarettes and LED flashlights.
Know which type (size) is required.
When comparing these three types, a 18650 is the largest in the group.
Next in size is the 14500. It’s identical to a standard AA battery, but size is the only attribute the two have in common.
The 16340 is the smallest. It’s a direct cousin of the disposable CR123 lithium battery.
Obviously the device you’re powering will determine which size is required.
Know Your Voltage Requirements
Some devices might not be clearly marked where type of useable battery is concerned. If there’s a user manual for the product, read it carefully. If the product only accepts AA size batteries, make certain the voltage requirements are sufficient to accept one or more 3.7 volt cells.
NOTE: Most remote controls that use two AA batteries, may only accept up to 3 or 4 volts. This would be a candidate for two NiMH batteries ONLY!! These are NOT lithium batteries, but a completely different chemistry! Read about buying them HERE.
It’s much easier to know if an LED flashlight accepts 14500 batteries than other AA operated products.
The voltage requirement is much simpler when the product runs on either 18650’s or 16340’s. Normally, if it accepts ONE 18650, then it can take TWO 16340’s. A device that accepts only ONE 16340, will NOT be large enough to hold a 18650.
Know Your Battery Brands!
Okay, you’re now thinking, what? What do you mean “brand?”
Believe me, I know what I’m talking about. Buying a reliable brand of lithium battery is just as important as knowing what type to buy!
I wrote about the possible dangers of buying cheap 18650 batteries here.
In general, if you stick to brands that include;
….then you can rest assured you’ve bought a quality battery. Many of those on the internet that are sold in multiple sets… as an example; six for as little as $12, aren’t worth it, and could actually be dangerous to use! In addition, when a charger is included, all at one crazy-low price… it’s often a deal to steer clear from.
If you’re like many (including myself) and price is an issue…do your shopping homework. The point to take away about rechargeable batteries, is that it doesn’t pay to buy merchandise that appears cheaper than average! “Deals” of four or more batteries starting in the $10 range should be avoided!! I don’t say this from an affiliate marketers perspective. I say it from the standpoint of quality and safety.
NOTE: If you buy lithium batteries from any of the makers I noted above, you won’t need to be concerned about getting a battery with an exaggerated capacity branded on the label.
Olight are highly recommended, and can be checked out here.
Alternatively you may click here for a wider choice.
I hope this post has been informative, and I’ll be happy to respond to any questions or comments.