Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Rechargeable Battery Charges Could Be Draining Your Energy!

Many devices now use rechargeable batteries.  This can span the range from tools to cell phones and in between.  After you have used the devices it becomes necessary to put them in a charger and leave them overnight.

Did you know you are wasting energy and driving up your utility costs if you leave them charging after they are charged?

Now don't misunderstand, rechargeable batteries are the best option for savings costs.  In fact, an independent study conducted for battery manufacturer UNIROSS estimates that using a disposable battery to create 1 kilowatt-hour of electricity has a global warming impact equivalent to driving a car 283 miles; using a rechargeable battery is equivalent to driving 10 miles.

Figuring up todays fuel costs it is very easy to see rechargeable batteries are the way to go, if you follow these guidelines. *
  • Choose an energy-efficient charger. Energy Star-rated models use 35 percent less energy than standard chargers, while solar-powered battery chargers use no electricity at all. For further energy savings, look for a “smart” charger that shuts off when the batteries are fully charged (overcharging shortens battery life). Regardless of charger type, unplug it when it is not being used as it will continue to draw electricity even when not charging.

  • Care for idle batteries. Do not leave batteries uncharged or unused for long periods, which can shorten their life. Remove batteries from infrequently used devices and store away from heat and moisture.

  • Dispose of batteries properly. Rechargeable batteries contain toxic materials and should not be thrown out with regular trash. When purchasing batteries, ask the retailer whether it takes them back for recycling; if it does not, you may be able to bring them to your municipal hazardous waste facility or a local recycling center. 
 * Information contributed by the Union of Concerned Scientists

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