Get all your eneloop questions answered below.
Eneloop vs eneloop PRO vs lite, what model to choose?
These are the most popular.
Because the standard white model can be used in almost any kind of application. They are robust enough to handle a very high discharge current for example in powerful flashlights and RC cars. In combination with their life cycle rating of 2100, you can't go wrong with the standard models in almost all cases. They power 1900mAh minimum capacity for their AA, and 750mAh for their AAA batteries.
They are good for Flashlights, RC Toys, Cameras, Camera Flash, Radios, MP3 players and much more. See more details on the eneloop tests page.
These cells are rated for 3000 cycles (for the Japanese model) or 5000 cycles (for the Chinese model) but have a much lower capacity at 950 mAh for the AA and 550 for the AAA. Besides using them in low drain devices such as clocks, alarms, remote controls and such, these are the only batteries really recommended for DECT phones. (even thought the standard eneloops are sometimes recommended as well, Lite cells make much more sense). Standard and Pro batteries are not recommended for this. Because the phones usually stand in a charging cradle with a continuous trickle charge. LSD batteries do generally not like that, but the Lites are the only ones to consider for that kind of use.
It's called the High-End battery in their line-up. Featuring the highest capacity with a LSD rating for 85% in 1 year. Being a high capacity cell, they are only rated for 500 cycles.
If you need the extra power and the extra capacity these are the ones to get. Especially in multiple cell configurations. If you have 4 batteries parallel you gain the capacity of 1 extra std cell in comparison with 4 std cells parallel.
These are highly recommended for Flashlights, Camera strobes and other powerful devices.
These are NOT recommended for DECT phones or other devices with a continuous charge current.
Another thing you have to consider when buying these Pro batteries is the fact that they are just a tiny bit wider than the standard ones which may result in not fitting. This is such a tiny bit of difference that most people do not notice it. Sanyo noted that they do not fit the AA to D size spacers (NCS-TG-D). They may have changed this with their latest Panasonic upgrade (BQ-BS1E). Be careful, these battery jackets are easier to damage ! Read more on the dedicated Eneloop PRO page.
What does eneloop mean?
Sanyo decided in 2005 to name their new batteries eneloop. ene = energy, loop= cycle. Meaning that energy can be recycled. Or to put it in their own words "rechargeable energy".
What does LSD mean?
LSD stands for Low Self Discharge.
Every battery that is stored away (or not being used in a device without parasitic drain) loses its charge. This is referred to as Self Discharge. Eneloop batteries use high quality materials and an improved manufacturing design that will decrease this rate of discharge to a minimum. The result is that they lose their charge much slower than a traditional NiMH battery.
What does it mean: 70% capacity left after 10 years?
Please take a look at the picture:
As you can see some packages say 70% charge left after 10 years, and some packages say 70% capacity left after 10 years. This can be confusing. They basically try to say the same thing.
Comparing this with a bucket of water:
An AA standard eneloop battery has a capacity of 1900mAh. (Let's compare this with a 10-liter bucket of water).
After 10 years the eneloop battery slowly loses its charge. (The water evaporates from the bucket).
There is still 70% charge left inside the battery after 10 years, which is 70% of 1900= 1330mAh. (after 10 years there is still 7 liters of water inside the bucket, because 30% has evaporated).
You can still use 1330mAh from this battery. (You can still use the 7 liters of water).
When you charge the battery full again it is back at 1900mAh. (When you fill the bucket of water it can hold 10 liters again)
10 years after you fully charged the battery and left it untouched, the battery life degraded to 70% of its full potential. So even if you charge the battery, you can only charge it till 70% of its full capacity. This is not true. If you charge the battery again, it can come back to full capacity. So in case of a standard AA eneloop that means 1900mAh.
Note: The battery probably needs a refresh/break-in to revive the battery to its full capacity because of its internal resistance etc. Also, this is only related to Eneloop batteries. Other batteries don't have this quality structure and are very likely to have degraded capacity.
What's the difference between the 1900 mAh and the 2000 mAh eneloop batteries?
There is no difference. 1900mAh is the Minimum capacity of a standard model, while 2000 mAh is the Typical capacity. In Japan Panasonic stopped showing Typical capacity on their packages since approximately 2013. I believe the Typical capacity is still shown on some packages in the US. Correct me if I'm wrong.
Do eneloops suffer from memory effect?
No they don't. They do not have a memory effect. But they do have a reduction in capacity over time. I think it's called Lazy effect.. or something similar. It means that they will not have full capacity after many charges. With a "refresh" cycle you will be putting them back to full capacity again.
Questions about charging eneloops?
How to charge, Recommended charge current, How to Analyse etc.
Are Eneloop batteries the best?
Quite frankly, in almost every battery comparison test eneloops are at the top. Not always #1, because some other high capacity cells like the Panasonic 2700 do a very good job as well in high drain devices. But have a look at the many tests in the Eneloop Test section on this website.
The only place they don't excel is in extreme low drain devices, like clocks. But that is for NiMH batteries normal, and Alkaleaks (Alkaline) have always an advantage here.
Also keep in mind, that rechargeable batteries are usually used more than once, and therefore it is important to look at the lifespan of the batteries as well. Many reviews on the internet forget about that. Like the wirecutter reviews as a prime example.
Where should I store my batteries? And at what temperature?
Your best bet would be storing them in a cool, dry place. Not in a humid, very hot or wet environment. Sanyo recommended to store them around 24 degrees Celsius and not in a fridge/freezer. Panasonic says the same: do not store them in a refrigerator.
Is it safe to store eneloop batteries for extended periods of time?
It depends on the place you want to store them. Like the previous question, it is best to store them in a cool and dry place. But for emergencies you could store them in flashlights and other emergency devices as long as the device won't discharge the batteries. A common problem with flashlight that have an electronic switch is their parasitic drain. In that case I recommend to lock-out the flashlight so it won't discharge the batteries.
If I drop my battery, can it get damaged?
Yes, it can certainly damage the battery if dropped on a hard (for example concrete) floor. You should keep an eye on that particular battery when charging and see that it doesn't get excessively hot. (Fortunately they can withstand quite a bit, so one drop to the floor is usually no big deal).
What does the orange symbol mean on a Japanese Panasonic battery?
Japan uses 4 different symbols for their battery recycling system. NiMH has an orange recycle symbol. Take a look at the following list. You might have seen the blue Li-Ion recycle symbol on your laptop battery for example. Japan has a very good organized recycle system with lots of variations.
What are the rarest eneloops?
That must be the eneloop Plus. They are only available in 2 or 4 packs, and in charger sets. Besides these cells the older Sanyo Limited Editions are becoming more difficult to get, for a normal price. They tend to go for $50+ for a set of 8 batteries. D and C cells are also only available in Japan.
What are the best rechargeable batteries?
Eneloops! Not kidding. You can't go wrong with eneloops in any category. Be it low-drain, high drain. Eneloop batteries are always in the top of every test. Especially considering long-term use! Also check out all the tests to see why they are the best rechargeable batteries.
Are the blue Costco eneloops the same as white eneloops?
Yes, they are the same! Costco has its own color so to say, dark blueetc. Since 2018 they also have the normal white eneloops. Their packages are also custom made for them, they are that big of a store!
Yes, they are real and the same! From around March 2018 Amazon has been kind of flooded with blue eneloops, usually with a manufacturing date of 2016. They seem to be the ones sold at Costco before. They are the real deal, but you might have to do a break-in to get the max capacity. I have only seen them in 16-packs and not smaller.
If you have, please let me know and possibly send me a picture.
I found some orange, green, silver, grey and red colored eneloops, are they real?
In certain stores and at Amazon.com you can buy colored eneloops. Like these green , orange , gray , silver or red eneloops. They are the same as the white standard models. 1900mAh for AA and 750mAh for AAA.
They are NOT a special edition as some sellers say they are. They are just designed for a specific store/seller/market.
How can I see if my eneloops are real or fake?
Why are new eneloop models in Japan usually introduced in the month of November?
This is my understanding for how much I understand it : -)
Because eneloop was first announced in November 2005, so November would be an anniversary month. But I think it has to do with the 2nd reason as well.
November is called the battery month in Japan. This "battery month" was first established in 1997. It has to do with how you write the number 11 in Japanese. It is written as: 十一 and you can guess what those symbols stand for. And that might be the reason why eneloop was first announced in November anyhow.
So how about April then?
April is the first month of the financial year as well as the academic year in Japan. That might be the reason that they sometimes introduced new batteries in April?
What's the difference between an Alkaline or Zinc battery and eneloop?
About Alkaline batteries:
- They have a higher Voltage than eneloops, being 1.5V. Sometimes this helps to power some devices that shows Low-battery-warning with rechargeable NiMH batteries.
- They have more energy at very low current, <0.1A For example in clocks and remote controls
- They are widely available almost everywhere in the world
- You don't need to buy a charger ;).
- They can leak. Especially when stored in devices for a longer period of time. Sometimes they leak even inside the original package.
- They produce much more waste. Besides them ending in the normal garbage, many batteries can be found on the street and ... adding to the environmental damage.
- More expensive in comparison to recharging an eneloop even just 20 times!
About eneloop batteries:
- Better in every other aspect.
- They are rechargeable.
- They can be used in colder weather.
- They are much more powerful than Alkalines. Because of that they are better for applications in which batteries need to provide more power.
- Eneloops don't leak like Alkalines do.
- They have much nicer battery jackets.
- They are collectible.
- They are cheaper in the long run.
- They reduce the amount of waste compared to Alkaline throw-away-batteries.
- Price is higher.
- Not widely available.
Where can I buy authentic Japanese eneloops?
I decided to dedicate 1 complete page for where to buy your eneloops. I highly recommend that you verify that the source of the batteries you are buying is legitimate. In 2017 and 2018 there are fake eneloop PRO found off of eBay.
It depends on where you live. If you are in the EU or US there are enough places to get them from. Amazon, Bestbuy, Conrad, Costco. If you are from Asia, South America, Africa, New Zealand or Australia it is more difficult, because they mainly have Chinese eneloops. You would have to buy them overseas. The best thing is directly from Japan if you really want to.
More coming soon............