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Photography Question 
Karen  Talasco
BetterPhoto Member Since: 4/5/2003
 

AA Rechargeable Batteries


This is a really silly question. I have 3 sets of AA rechargeable batteries. I usually shoot every day and my batteries are recharged only when the camera says they are dead. If I haven't shot anything for several weeks now and the batteries have just been sitting in my bag are the charged batteries still fully charged. Or do they lose their charge after sitting for a period of time. I'm not sure if I should recharge them again, especially since they weren't used at all. I'm going on a trip tomorrow and don't want to end up with half dead batteries. Thanks. Karen


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11/22/2004 1:41:29 PM

 
Bob Cammarata
BetterPhoto Member Since: 7/17/2003
  You should carry one of those handy little battery testers to check them if you're not sure.
I've never used rechargeable AA's, but I imagine it wouldn't hurt to top them off on the charger before an important session.


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11/22/2004 3:49:19 PM

 
Karen  Talasco
BetterPhoto Member Since: 4/5/2003
  Thanks, Bob. I appreciate you getting back to me so quickly.


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11/22/2004 4:18:34 PM

 
Kip T. Berger
BetterPhoto Member Since: 2/20/2002
  Are your AA Rechargeables NiMh or NiCd? The NiMh are less prone to memory effect, and have a better capacity than the NiCd. All batteries self-discharge, but at varying rates. For NiMh it is 1% of it's deliverable energy per day at room temperature. Memory effect is if a battery is repeatedly only partially discharged before recharging, the battery "forgets" that it has the capacity to further discharge all the way down. To illustrate: If you, on a regular basis, fully charge your battery and then use only 50% of its capacity before the next recharge, eventually the battery will become unaware of its extra 50% capacity which has remained unused. The battery will remain functional, but only at 50% of its original capacity.

The way to avoid the "memory effect" is to fully cycle (fully charge and then fully discharge) the battery at least once every two to three months. Simply leaving the device in the ON position and letting it run can discharge batteries completely. This will help insure your battery remains healthy. Once discharged, recharge the battery completely.


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11/22/2004 10:37:41 PM

 
Karen  Talasco
BetterPhoto Member Since: 4/5/2003
  Thank you, Kip.


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11/23/2004 4:10:53 AM

 
Kip T. Berger
BetterPhoto Member Since: 2/20/2002
  You're welcome Karen. BTW, I usually keep 3 sets in addition to the ones currently in my camera. I suggest you pick up a battery charger with adapter for charging in your vehicle. Then you can keep your batteries charge on your home charger, but while on a shoot, still have access to a power supply to be able to charge your other sets as they become "dead". Also with memory so inexpensive nowadays, is good to keep plenty of media cards for unexpected shots you may wish to capture. Have a nice Thanksgiving!


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11/23/2004 7:44:30 AM

 
Karen  Talasco
BetterPhoto Member Since: 4/5/2003
  Hi, Kip. Thanks for all the tips and info. I do have 3 additional sets and they are always charged and ready to go. I also have a home charger and car charger. I have three xD cards which works out well. I usually shoot every day so I know if my batteries are charged or not. The last two weeks they all just sat in my camera bag, as I hadn't been out shooting. I did recharge all of them. I only used one set for most of the day, before needing to replace them. It worked out well. I appreciate all of your help. Thank you. And you have a great Thanksgiving also. :)


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11/23/2004 2:10:01 PM

 
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