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- This article refers to common battery types and sizes in household and light industrial use.
Battery size generally refers to the shape, voltage, and terminal layout of a battery. Thus the term "size" has become interchangeable with "type". Batteries of different types will usually not have the same dimensions and terminal layout.
New battery chemistries have strained the original common naming conventions. In all old batteries the voltages were in increments of 1.5 volts, which reflected the number of individual cells in the battery. Newer chemistries such as rechargeable NiCd and NiMH typically output 1.25 volts per cell. Some devices may not run properly on rechargeable batteries, but most handle them reasonably well. Other devices have exceptionally high drain rates and require a lithium type battery to run properly. Many new battery sizes refer to both the batteries' size and chemistry, while older names do not. For a more complete list see battery types. This summary is only for types relating to battery "sizes".
Battery chemistry primary
(charge density order)
Battery chemistry rechargeable
Even more confusing is that many manufacturers assign their own names and numbers to their batteries in disregard of common, colloquial, IEC, and ANSI naming conventions (See LR44 battery as an example). Many times this is to steer customers towards their brand and away from competitors by obfuscating the common name for a battery. For instance, if your TV remote needs a new battery and inside the battery compartment it says, "Replace with CX472 type battery", many customers will get that specific type, which is a product model for a common battery from a specific company, not knowing that many other companies also make that exact same battery. In this article brand models have been purposefully omitted to avoid confusion.
Table of battery sizes
- SR# / LR# / AG# Button Cells: IEC SR series batteries are silver oxide chemistry and provide 1.55 volts, while IEC LR series batteries are alkaline chemistry and provide 1.5 volts. Since there are no 'common' names beyond the AG# designation, many places use these three terms interchangeably, and they will all fit and work. The only difference is that the SR series typically have 50% greater capacity than the LR series. In low-drain devices like watches (without lights) this isn't very important, but in high-drain devices like blinkies, key chain flashlights, or laser pointers the SR type is preferred. Typically SR and LR will be the same price unless one buys in wholesale volume so there is no reason not to get the SR version. Often the free 'demo' batteries that come with a device are the LR version.
- IEC CR# series: Denotes lithium-manganese dioxide chemistry. Since LiMnO2 cells produce 3 volts there are usually no alternate chemistries for a CR# coin battery. Conversely one LiMnO2 cell can replace two alternate chemistry cells, in a 3, 6, 9, or 12 volt battery. CR cell numbers correlate with the cell dimensions, being the diameter in millimetres (except for the extra half millimetre in some cases) followed by the height in tenths of a millimetre.
- Button / Coin / Miniature: In many places these are used interchangeably.
- 9 volt battery
- AA battery
- AAA battery
- AAAA battery
- LR44 battery (Good example of manufacturer naming versus IEC/ANSI naming)
- Button cell
- A battery (vacuum tubes)
- B battery (vacuum tubes)
- C battery (vacuum tubes)
- Commons:Category:Electric batteries
- Energizer/Eveready Data Sheets
- Radio Shack Useful for cross referencing common/IEC/ANSI and manufacturer numbers of batteries. NOTE: Sometimes there are small inaccuracies pertaining to button/coin cell battery names. These naming problems are industry wide.
- Battery Force Also useful, Same note as for Radio Shack.
- The Small Battery Company Some obscure button size equivalents.
- The relevant US standard is ANSI C18.1 American National Standard for Dry Cells and Batteries-Specifications.
- IEC 60086-1: Primary batteries - Part 1: General
- IEC 60086-2: Primary batteries - Part 2: Physical and electrical specifications
- IEC 60086-3: Primary batteries - Part 3: Watch batteries
- IEC 60086-4: Primary batteries - Part 4: Safety of lithium batteries
- ANSI C18.1, Part 1 Portable Primary Cells and Batteries With Aqueous Electrolyte - General and Specifications
- ANSI C18.1, Part 2 Portable Primary Cells and Batteries With Aqueous
Electrolyte ? Safety Standard
- ANSI C18.2, Part 1 Portable Rechargeable Cells and Batteries - General and Specifications
- ANSI C18.2, Part 2 Portable Rechargeable Cells and Batteries ? Safety
- ANSI C18.3, Part 1 Portable Lithium Primary Cells and Batteries - General and Specifications
- ANSI C18.3, Part 2 Portable Lithium Primary Cells and Batteries ? Safety Standard
Categories: Electric batteries | Electronics lists | Battery shapes