Can batteries go in the fridge?

In this brief, we will answer the query, “can batteries go in the fridge?”. We will also discuss the best way to store batteries.

Can batteries go in the fridge?

The myth about storing batteries in the fridge has been going around in households for a long time. No, batteries should not be stored in the fridge to get the optimum outcome. 

In the late 1800s when the first Zinc-carbon batteries were invented, they tended to perform better and minimise self-discharge while stored in colder temperatures.

But things have changed since the 1950s when the new technology of Alkaline batteries was manufactured. These batteries are not much affected by very low temperatures achieved by storing them in the fridge. The self-discharge is a minimum of less than 2% in a year.

Though storing the batteries in the fridge doesn’t change much of its performance or capacity, proper storage of batteries is a must. Mishandling or wrong storage can cause damage to the batteries or cause hazards.

Where to store batteries?

Batteries should be stored at room temperature between 68-78 F, which is an ideal temperature. Temperature fluctuations are something batteries do not like. 

Extreme temperatures can cause corrosion, condensation, and leakage due to high humidity.

Batteries need to be stored away from direct sunlight in a dark, cold area. Avoid storing them in the hot garage or near the windows where direct sunlight is prominent. How much ever care is given in storing the batteries, self-discharge cannot be stopped.

What is self-discharge in batteries?

Self-discharge is a phenomenon that happens within the batteries due to chemical reactions even when the load is not applied or the battery is in use. 

There is no method or way to stop this phenomenon. The batteries if stored at room temperatures tend to lose less than 2% per year due to this phenomenon.

How to store batteries?

Storing batteries to get the best out of them is what comes to everyone’s mind. We will look into various aspects that need to be taken care of to keep the batteries in a healthy state.

Leave in original packaging

The best thing to do is to leave the batteries in their original packaging until you need to use them. This will help to batteries affected due to humidity or mixing up or even losing them. 

If you happen to open them, then storing them in a dry, clean plastic container away from moisture or extreme temperature will do the trick.

Segregate

There will always be loose batteries in the household that have been used but not dead lying around. Storing them in an airtight plastic container is the key to their long use. But while doing so, one should be mindful to segregate them according to their manufacturing date and type.

No two separate batteries of different dates or types or even manufacturers should be mixed. Mixing different batteries and storing them in a single container can cause chemical reactions and hazards.

Keep away from metals

Metals and batteries are no good friends. Metals are a good conductor, so when they come in contact with batteries then the batteries will start to discharge energy. 

One should avoid electrical conduction which might lead up to a short circuit and cause damage. Storing batteries in metal boxes or anything metal nearby should be avoided.

Avoid fridge/freezers

Fridges and freezers are not the best place to store your batteries. A fridge is a cold and moist environment which is not a favourable environment for batteries. 

This type of environment causes condensation of the batteries which causes lead or rust or other damage to the batteries.

Keep batteries dry

Batteries should be stored at room temperature away from moisture and cold or excess heat. The batteries should be always stored in a dry and clean place to avoid corrosion, condensation, and leakage of chemicals.

How to dispose of dead batteries?

Batteries are of various types and not all batteries are hazardous to be disposed of with the normal household trash. For example, regular manganese, alkaline, and carbon-zinc batteries are not considered hazardous. 

These can be mixed with normal rubbish but the rechargeable batteries and lithium-ion batteries should be considered to be recycled. 

These should be dropped off at the battery collection centres at your local council .

Lead and magnesium which are found in the batteries are considered to be hazardous and poisonous. So proper disposal of the dead batteries should be done with utmost care. 

In case anyone comes in contact with the leakage of batteries, one should immediately wash it with cold water or if itching or burning sensation persists then should immediately consult a physician to avoid any health issues. 

Conclusion

In this brief, we answered the query, “can batteries go in the fridge?”. We also discussed the best way to store batteries.

I hope to find this blog useful. If you have any questions, please let us know.

References

https://www.panasonic-batteries.com/en/news/how-store-batteries

Hi, I am Charlotte, I love cooking and in my previous life, I was a chef. I bring some of my experience to the recipes on this hub and answer your food questions.