Toys gobble up more batteries than you’d think. And since many of them use AA batteries, keeping them running with AA NiMH rechargeable batteries is a really cost-effective option.
If you scan around for reviews of the best AA rechargeable batteries, you’ll find that the reviews tend to focus primarily on the use of rechargeables in high performance electronics, such as digital cameras, camera flashes, walkie-talkies, and other devices. But if you really look closer into the kinds of devices that use rechargeable batteries, most of the most popular products — such as the iPhone, iPad, and laptops — don’t use AA and AAA rechargeable batteries; they use proprietary LiON battery packs.
If it sounds like I’m trying to talk you out of buying rechargeable batteries, I’m not: rather, it’s best to know what rechargeable batteries are used best for. Consumer Reports says the most cost-effective is in none other than toys.
If you have children, then you know it already: a majority of toys now require batteries to run. Scan your child’s playroom or toy box, and you’ll be hard-pressed to find many toys that do not contain lights, sounds, buttons, and other interactive electronic features. The heavy use of electronics in toys has come as a result of manufacturing moving into mainland China, where toys can be cheaply manufactured — even if they include electronic components.
Decades ago, even if toys took batteries, the use of electronics was usual limited to lighting up a few lights or making a simple sound. New toys, are predicated on electronics. Therefore, when the batteries run out, so too does the fun for your children.
Again — take an account of the toys your son or daughter never plays with. Chances are, they ran out of batteries.
This is why investing in rechargeable batteries is such a good idea for parents, or for businesses like day care centers and schools, who take care of children on a daily basis. Children often play with electronic toys for a longer span of their lifetime, and as a result, in order to keep them engaged with the toy, it needs to have fresh batteries. It is not impossible to imagine that you could have to replace AA batteries on a toy 5 to 10 times in its lifetime. In addition, toys are generally left in an “on” position even if they are not making any sounds or flashing lights. Because they are always slightly draining their batteries, using rechargeable batteries is much less of an energy (and money) loss.
By definition, the use of rechargeable batteries here is clear. After the first or second recharge, you will have already broken even on the investment. And going forward, as toys break or are given away, the rechargeable batteries that went with them become part of a cycle that will allow you to keep toys going for your kids all the time.
Parents love buying their children the newest, coolest toys. Be sure to make those toys count for your kids as long as you can using rechargeable batteries.
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