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Savings from Rechargeable Batteries

Q1. How long can NiMH Batteries last for my different applications per charge?

The lasting time for 4 different applications are given below:

AA Battery NiMH* Rechargeable NiCd Rechargeable Alkaline
Digital Camera 90 - 150 photos 60 - 80 photos 30 - 50 photos**
CD Player 18 hours 7 hours 6 hours
Game Boy 26 hours 12 hours 7 hours
PDA 18 hours 8 hours 7 hours

* Based on 1800 mAh NiMH AA batteries ** Based on three national brands


Q2. Using NiMH rechargeable vs. Alkaline primary (throwaway) battery, how much can I save?

NiMH rechargeable batteries last longer than Alkaline batteries which are currently the best among the throwaway batteries. NiMH rechargeable batteries thus maximize the performance of High Drain Devices with Nickel Metal Hydride (NiMH) Batteries. This means:

  • Take more pictures with Digital Cameras
  • Listen to more hours of music on Portable CD Players
  • Play more hours on Handheld Games

The following table is a comparison for using batteries for digital camera. The comparison shows that using NiMH batteries is more than 100 times more cost effective than using Alkaline prime batteries.

AA Battery Premium Alkaline NiMH Battery 
@ Retail
NiMH Battery 
@ Tenergy Power
Price 4 AA batteries $2.99 $12.99 $3.99
# of photos per charge 45* 90 90
Battery reuse Life cycles 1 500 500
Cost of Charger 0 19.99 14.99
Total Investment $2.99 $32.98 $18.98
Total # of photos can taken per battery 45 30,000 30,000
Battery cost per photo $0.0664 0.0011 $0.0006

* Based AA Alkaline batteries and AA NiMH 2000 mAh rechargeable batteries
** Based on the average of three national brands
*** Based on industry (ANSI) digital camera test. (Based on average).

The other way to estimate the saving is shown in the following plot. Take the same digital camera example, we can compare NiMH rechargeable and alkaline throwaway. Since alkaline batteries need to be replaced every 45 photos while the NiMH batteries can last up to 30,000 photos, the accumulated cost comparison is shown in the following plot. You can draw two conclusions from this plot: (1) saving from using NiMH rechargeable can be realized early on, typical after 20 -40 photos; (2) the total saving over the life time of NiMH rechargeable batteries can be up to $2,000.


So when you change your battery habit from Alkaline to NiMH rechargeable, your saving starts to accumulate as shown in the following chart. In addition, you are saving the environment.

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