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blipstream

batteries, eneloop, etc - in/out?

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Hi!

If I won't use my light, strobe, camera etc. for longer time, like more than 3 months, is it better to take the batteries etc. out? If so, why?

Thanks

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19 minutes ago, blipstream said:

Hi!

If I won't use my light, strobe, camera etc. for longer time, like more than 3 months, is it better to take the batteries etc. out? If so, why?

Thanks

Hi. If it helps - I used to leave them in as I can normally get 2 weekends of dives out of a charge BUT I learned a lesson - had a relatively minor leak on a z330 battery compartment and had left the batteries in until my next dive a week later. Had I taken them out after the first dive I could have cleaned everything up, however I lost the strobe. I now remove the batteries and the end of every dive day as a matter of habit.

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Eneloops should be okay after three months, but I would still remove and put in fresh charged cells before diving. What if three months turns to six?

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Sry I think my question is a bit missleading. I was more leaning towards what is better for the device?

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58 minutes ago, blipstream said:

Sry I think my question is a bit missleading. I was more leaning towards what is better for the device?

Its best not to keep batteries in strobes when not in use. There is always a chance of a leak. But if your question is non-used batteries for a few months, then its best to recharge all of them EQUALLY. This is important, cause if the batteries are not evenly charged they can send an incorrect signal to the strobe and create issues. I had such issues with the Z240's long back. 

Hope this helps

Diggy

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I dive pretty regularly so the batteries go back in as a matter of course, but if you don't have another dive scheduled in the next few weeks, leave them out after recharging.   I would generally top the batteries off after 2-3 weeks if I had not used them.

I think eneloops are probably unlikely to leak unlike cheap alkalines, but you might as well have them out to top them off if you may not dive again soon.

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12 minutes ago, ChrisRoss said:

I dive pretty regularly so the batteries go back in as a matter of course, but if you don't have another dive scheduled in the next few weeks, leave them out after recharging.   I would generally top the batteries off after 2-3 weeks if I had not used them.

I think eneloops are probably unlikely to leak unlike cheap alkalines, but you might as well have them out to top them off if you may not dive again soon.

Thank you, but what means "to top off"? (English is not my native language sry)

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To recharge them??

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5 hours ago, blipstream said:

Thank you, but what means "to top off"? (English is not my native language sry)

Just put em on the charger to be sure they have a full charge before use.

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8 hours ago, ChrisRoss said:

I think eneloops are probably unlikely to leak unlike cheap alkalines

Unfortunately it happens :( A few months ago, I was preparing to go diving next morning, so I set up my rig the day before, but when I woke up, I was running a 38.5C fever and a visit to a doctor confirmed dengue, which was followed by a bout of tonsillitis that required IV antibiotics to treat, so I got knocked on my ass for almost two weeks, during which my rig sat on a shelf, sealed, ready to dive. When I got better and opened it up, I found that at least one Eneloop Pro cell leaked electrolyte inside a brand new Retra Supercharger :blink: I took out the circuit board and cleaned it up as well as I could, but there's still an unsightly discoloration all over its insides.

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50 minutes ago, Barmaglot said:

Unfortunately it happens :( A few months ago, I was preparing to go diving next morning, so I set up my rig the day before, but when I woke up, I was running a 38.5C fever and a visit to a doctor confirmed dengue, which was followed by a bout of tonsillitis that required IV antibiotics to treat, so I got knocked on my ass for almost two weeks, during which my rig sat on a shelf, sealed, ready to dive. When I got better and opened it up, I found that at least one Eneloop Pro cell leaked electrolyte inside a brand new Retra Supercharger :blink: I took out the circuit board and cleaned it up as well as I could, but there's still an unsightly discoloration all over its insides.

Argh! That is seriously bad luck: dengue, tonsillitis, leaking Eneloops and an off-color Supercharger! You sure are due a break!

Have you asked Oskar if there is any way to clean up the Supercharger? It might be worth it. 

 

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8 hours ago, Barmaglot said:

Unfortunately it happens :( A few months ago, I was preparing to go diving next morning, so I set up my rig the day before, but when I woke up, I was running a 38.5C fever and a visit to a doctor confirmed dengue, which was followed by a bout of tonsillitis that required IV antibiotics to treat, so I got knocked on my ass for almost two weeks, during which my rig sat on a shelf, sealed, ready to dive. When I got better and opened it up, I found that at least one Eneloop Pro cell leaked electrolyte inside a brand new Retra Supercharger :blink: I took out the circuit board and cleaned it up as well as I could, but there's still an unsightly discoloration all over its insides.

Nasty - Dengue is not at all fun by all accounts.  Anyway back to the battery- googling around indicates a couple of things - first eneloops are electrolyte starved there is really very little actual liquid in them and it is all absorbed by the other components so there is very little to leak.  The other thing I saw is that it is reported that eneloops do not like very low discharge currents like 50micro amps or something that some devices draw when in standby and that is reported to cuase leakage.  If they leak in the absence of any water , it should leak potassium hydroxide which reacts with CO2 in the air to form a white powder - it will also react with aluminium.

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6 hours ago, ChrisRoss said:

Nasty - Dengue is not at all fun by all accounts.  Anyway back to the battery- googling around indicates a couple of things - first eneloops are electrolyte starved there is really very little actual liquid in them and it is all absorbed by the other components so there is very little to leak.  The other thing I saw is that it is reported that eneloops do not like very low discharge currents like 50micro amps or something that some devices draw when in standby and that is reported to cuase leakage.  If they leak in the absence of any water , it should leak potassium hydroxide which reacts with CO2 in the air to form a white powder - it will also react with aluminium.

"The other thing I saw is that it is reported that eneloops do not like very low discharge currents like 50micro amps or something that some devices draw when in standby and that is reported to cuase leakag"

 

The above is what had happened to my strobes long ago. Apparently they were on very low charge and the strobe recognised the signal as noise instead of a 'to fire' signal. Had to send them to Inon for replacement, which they promptly did. Although their explanation had room for clarity.

Very well described Chris.

 

Diggy

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On 4/29/2021 at 7:02 PM, TimG said:

Have you asked Oskar if there is any way to clean up the Supercharger? It might be worth it. 

It isn't too bad; I scrubbed away most of it and it doesn't appear to affect the functionality of the strobe.

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Worst comes to worst, I'll contact Retra about buying a replacement set of contact boards.

 

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Posted (edited)

For what it is worth, I always remove batteries from battery powered devices when stored. For my Inon D2000 strobes I remove them during transit on a trip and at home. They may remain installed except during charge during a trip of active diving. I number my cells as sets and keep them together and use them together and charge them together. 

And I too have seen Eneloops leak and it may well be due to micro-discharge when setting idle, I could only hazard a guess for that. But I have seen them leak.  Plus there is the constant depression of the contacts (at least with Inon strobes) that can deform them over time or if there is a jarring impact (while in the case). 

Edited by Captain Fathom

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Posted (edited)

In line with the above, it is safe and good practice to always remove all batteries when equipment is to be stored, or not used for more than a few days.  Some batteries are more trustworthy than others, for example, I have never had an AA Eneloop  or other rechargeable batteries leak, also coin batteries (ie, 2032) are reliable, But other batteries such as AA and AAA Duracells leak frequently, I just now threw away four leaky ones.  Better safe than sorry,  I remove all batteries when the equipment is not in use, and store them separately.  

Edited by Kraken de Mabini

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