Proper storage, care and handling of your batteries
Batteries run everything from your smoke alarm to your kid’s toys. Aside from that, you probably don’t give them much thought. But treat them well, and they’ll reward you with long-lasting dependable energy. Here’s some information to get you started.
Battery Do's and Don'ts
- DO read the instructions on your device before installing batteries. Only use the size and type of battery specified in the instructions.
- DO insert the batteries properly. Follow the symbols showing the correct way to position the positive (+) and negative (-) ends of the batteries.
- DO keep battery contact surfaces clean by gently rubbing with a clean pencil eraser or cloth.
- DO immediately remove exhausted batteries from your device and dispose of properly.
- DO remove all batteries from the device at the same time and replace them with new batteries of the same size and type.
- DO preserve battery life by switching off a device and removing the batteries when it is not being used, and is not expected to be used for extended periods of time.
- DO practice proper battery storage by keeping batteries in a cool, dry place at normal room temperature. It is not necessary to store batteries in a refrigerator.
- DON’T dispose of batteries in a fire — they may leak or rupture.
- DON’T disassemble, crush, puncture, or otherwise damage batteries. This can result in leakage or rupture.
- DON’T carry loose batteries in a pocket or purse with metal objects like coins, paper clips, etc. This can short-circuit the battery, leading to high heat or leakage.
- DON’T recharge a battery unless it is specifically marked "rechargeable." Attempting to recharge a non-rechargeable (primary) battery could result in leakage or rupture. Don't use rechargeable alkaline batteries in nickel metal hydride battery chargers.
- DON’T store batteries or battery-powered devices in hot places — elevated temperatures can lead to capacity loss, leakage or rupture.
- DON’T mix old and new batteries, or mix different types or makes of batteries. This can cause leakage or rupture, resulting in personal injury or property damage.
- DON’T give batteries to young children
Traveling with Batteries: It’s Safe!
Planning a trip? You don’t need to leave your batteries at home. Batteries and battery-powered devices are safe to fly with if you follow these simple guidelines from the U.S. Department of Transportation:
- Pack spare batteries in carry-on baggage. In the passenger compartment, flight crews can better monitor safety conditions to prevent an incident, and can access fire extinguishers, if an incident does happen. Keep spare batteries in the original retail packaging, to prevent unintentional activation or short-circuiting.
- For loose batteries, place a strip of insulated tape across the battery's contacts or place each battery in its own protective case, plastic bag or package to protect them from contact with metal objects, such as coins, keys or jewelry.
- Take steps to prevent crushing, puncturing or putting a high degree of pressure on the battery, as this can cause an internal short-circuit, resulting in overheating.
- Per the U.S. Department of Transportation, “batteries pose little risk contained in the devices they power and that taking the battery out of the device does not enhance safety."