14

I've heard that keeping batteries in the refrigerator ensures long battery shelf-life. Is this true? If not, where did this information come from?

  • Can you please provide some source? And give more info on what types of batteries. Because due to different types of construction and materials needed I think that the behavior for Li-Ion, Ni MH, Alkaline and Pb will be quite different. – Daniel Iankov Sep 15 '11 at 23:07
  • 1
    @Daniel - You've never seen batteries in someone's fridge? I thought this was a common misconception, too - especially among older folks. – dtanders Sep 16 '11 at 13:46
  • In the research I did for the answer below, many of the sites that I came across implied that with old (think 1950s) batteries, refrigerating did help. – Joel Rein Sep 16 '11 at 19:10
  • Question: I often hear or read about placing batteries in the refrigerator to extend battery life. As the battery is warmed to room temperature, will the battery condensate and damage the item they are placed in to? – user16117 Nov 7 '13 at 13:26
14

It depends on the batteries.

For alkaline batteries, no.

According to Kodak,

Ideally cells should be stored in a cool, dry place away from direct sunlight, radiators, and other heat sources. Refrigeration is not necessary, nor is it recommended. If you do store batteries in the refrigerator, let them warm up to room temperature (takes about two hours) and wipe off all condensation before use. Freezing is not recommended.

Duracell:

Do not refrigerate Duracell batteries, this will not make them last longer.

Energizer (pdf):

No, storage in a refrigerator or freezer is not required or recommended for batteries produced today. Cold temperature storage can in fact harm batteries if condensation results in corroded contacts or label or seal damage due to extreme temperature storage. To maximize performance and shelf life, store batteries at normal room temperatures (68°F to 78°F or 20°C to 25°C) with moderated humidity levels (35 to 65% RH).


According to Green Batteries and ehow, NiMH batteries do gain from being stored in a freezer (but keep them in a sealed bag and allow to warm up before using them).

According to M/A-COM, who apparently make batteries rechargeable batteries for radios,

Keep battery packs in a cool, dry storage area (32 to 86°F (0 to 30°C)). Refrigeration is recommended, but freezers should be avoided. When refrigerated, the battery pack should be placed in a plastic bag to protect against condensation.

1

Storing Li-ion batteries at low temperatures does appear to reduce the rate of capacity loss (page 4, figure 5). They only compared two storage temperatures (5C and 35C), but the batteries stored in the former displayed substantially less loss in capacity.

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .