Batteries, a study

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    kbmonday
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    Batteries. A study in power and preparedness.

    Most devices won’t work after the lights go out.

    Most preppers mistakenly believe that they are well prepared for loss of power. They keep alkaline batteries, a generator, gasoline and even hand cranked flashlights. What most people don’t realize is that many of our devices that we use daily will no longer function without a constant supply of electricity every day. Almost every gadget, from your phone to your hand tools use lithium batteries. Why is this a bad thing, you may ask?

    Lithium batteries only have a lifespan of 2-3 years, even if they have been sitting on a shelf and are unused. That’s right, a brand new lithium type battery will be unusable after 3 years. A typical AA rechargeable will still be usable and hold a charge after 10 years on a shelf. Lithium batteries also must stay at a high level of charge to remain functional. If you discharge one too deeply and the voltage level drops below a certain threshold, it’s ruined. Even if you have a solar charger lifespan of a lithium battery will not be longer than 3 years, and that is assuming you keep it fully charged every day.

    Lithium batteries have a shorter lifespan than AA’s.

    According to battery manufacturers a typical lithium-ion battery has a usable life of only 300-500 discharge cycles, whereas a regular eneloop rechargable AA has a usable life of 2100 discharge cycles. Which of these would you prefer to stake your life on? I know for myself, all of my flashlights, radios, and walkie-talkies use AA batteries and I do keep them in a stock rotation.

    AA Batteries are everywhere.

    In addition to this, specialized lithium batteries are hard to find. You can find rechargeable AA batteries at every pharmacy, grocery, and hardware store. Good luck finding that iphone or laptop battery at one of these places.

    Why are Lithium batteries used in so many devices?

    The reason that most household devices use Lithium batteries is very simple. They are cheap and have a high density level. What this means is that for the size and weight, you get more power out of a Lithium battery. But is this what you, as a prepper, really need?

    The storing of important survival information is one preparation that is often overlooked.

    Even for the most prepared and knowledgeable of us all, there is a lot of information that could make life better after SHTF. Books and articles that describe how to build a windmill or how to make herbal medicines are likely to become invaluable after a disaster. Books such as the Foxfire Series or Wild Edibles would be a serious boon to a person in a survival scenario, but books weigh too much to travel with, and can get wet, moldy, or catch on fire. Without this knowledge, you could be in a worse situation than you might be if you had it available to you. But if you are relying on Lithium chemistry batteries you may be setting yourself up for failure. So, just because you have all of the e-books on post-collapse survival that you’d ever need does not mean that you will actually be able to read and reference it. How do we avoid this situation and keep all of that information from disappearing in an apocalyptic scenario? Why not get a specialized device with AA batteries as an e-reader?

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