Rechargeable batteries would seem to be the ideal solution for powering all your devices. Rather than throw the battery away when it goes flat, you can recharge it, saving you money and helping reduce greenhouse gas emissions and landfill waste.

However there are many different types of rechargeable battery and it is important to pick the right one for your needs.

What type of rechargeable battery are you looking for?

Nickel Metal Hydride (NiMH) Rechargeable Batteries - NiMH batteries are the most common type of rechargeable battery because they include the five most popular sizes of battery, AA, AAA, C, D and 9V. They have a higher capacity and no memory effect compared to the NiCd batteries they replace. These should NEVER be used in Smoke Alarms.

Nickel Cadmium (NiCd) Rechargeable Batteries - NiCd batteries have been withdrawn because of the toxic effects of Cadmium on the environment. They have been replaced by NiMH batteries.

Lithium-ion (Li-ion) Rechargeable Batteries - Li-ion batteries are the most common type of rechargeable Lithium battery. They are very light and powerful making them ideal for digital cameras, camcorders and mobile phones.

Lithium polymer (Li-pol) Rechargeable Batteries - Li-pol batteries use a very similar technology to Li-ion batteries but because the electrolyte is solid they are more robust. Currently most commonly used in RC model vehicles.

Sealed Lead Acid (SLA) Rechargeable Batteries - SLA batteries are a very robust rechargeable battery but certainly not light or portable. As a result they are most often used in UPS backup, alarm and emergency lighting systems. The gel version which can be used at any angle is popular in electric golf trolleys.

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