A lot of people say that putting your batteries inside a fridge for some time before you use it helps double the lifespan of  your battery. So is this true? Or is it one of seeming useful but utterly useless life hack?

Before finding out whether this works or not we need to first know the reason why a lot of people do this.

chilled-alkaline-battery

Now every battery has a rate of self-discharge which refers to the rate at which any battery loses its stored energy while it is not used. So you are losing money every time you buy a battery and not using it. The colder temperature slows down the rate of energy discharge and thus make your battery last longer. This is a sound scientific theory and there is no way to avoid this.

So every battery is losing charge but how much charge is it losing. But by how much. there are different kinds of battery out there.

  1. The most commonly used are the disposable Alkaline Batteries which in general only lose around 1% or even lesser charge in a month.
  2. The rechargeable batteries that are used are the Nickel Metal Hydride batteries. Every NiHM battery had a discharge rate of close to 30%. But the ones sold nowadays have a discharge rate of only around 1.25% in a month. This is in general, equivalent to that of the disposable batteries.
  3. Lastly, there are the Lithium-ion Batteries that are used in laptops, mobiles and other electronics that have a discharge rate of 5% every month.

Now if we look at the above-given stats we find that for early NiHM batteries it might have made a bit of sense to put them in the fridge. But there are no real gains with a discharge rate of less than 5% a month on most batteries nowadays.

Besides, there are also problems that you need to be aware of when keeping batteries in a fridge. The extremely cold temperatures of the fridge can damage your battery. The micro-condensation that happens both inside and outside the battery might cause corrosion and damage your battery. There are folks who advise wrapping the battery in a plastic cover before keeping it inside the fridge so as to protect against condensation. But it is not really advised. In fact, even manufacturers of battery recommend against doing something like this.

So long story short. Any benefit you get by keeping any of the current generation batteries is offset by the damage that you do to your battery. So don’t keep batteries in the fridge. Instead, keep them in a cool and dry place that is non-refrigerated.

So TRUE or FALSE. Let me go with FALSE.

Written by Bajith Sasidharan

Leave a Reply