Dismiss Notice
Join Physics Forums Today!
The friendliest, high quality science and math community on the planet! Everyone who loves science is here!

Preserving Battery Life

  1. Aug 8, 2010 #1
    So I know that when an electronic device powered by batteries is turned off, the batteries actually continue to move charge and will lose energy over time. I keep emergency flashlights in storage and I usually put one battery in them backwards so that a circuit is not completed. What I want to know is, does that actually do anything to save battery life? Another thing also occurred to me, by doing that, do I increase the chance of the battery rupturing and leaking while in storage? Thanks.
  2. jcsd
  3. Aug 12, 2010 #2
    No, opening the switch of a flashlight adequately opens the circuit.
    Batteries lose charge due to internal leakage, as well as to external loads.
    Other than cold storage, there isn't anything you can do about that.

    As for increasing the chance of rupture and leakage, the only problem I see would be if one cell is more deeply exhausted than the other *and you complete the circuit*, causing current to flow through them. The stronger cell with push current in reverse through the weaker one, and that could be a hazard, I suppose.
Share this great discussion with others via Reddit, Google+, Twitter, or Facebook