396T Battery Shelf Life

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bwhite

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My recently acquired 396T, in excellent condition, seems to take the requisite amount of time to charge it's batteries which are Industrial (brand name) Rechargeable NiMH AA 2250mAh. I'm not sure if these came with it or not. Anyway, the question; Having been burned by NiCad memory in the past, I don't leave stuff charging all the time (look at how many people's laptops won't hold a charge). I go to "Charge Complete" and disconnect. Seems like by a week or so later, if I go to use it I only get an hour or so on battery before the death knell. Is this normal with NiMH batteries; in particular in this unit? Thanx and may your 2012 be a fine one!
 

russellmaher

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I can get around 8 hours continuous on my 396T with the batteries fully charged. I don't know if you
are charging yours in the scanner or not, but I only charge mine in an external charger...it's quicker
and you don't run the risk of a possible charging accident damaging that expensive scanner. Hope
this helps and....Happy New Year!

Russell
 

W8RMH

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My recently acquired 396T, in excellent condition, seems to take the requisite amount of time to charge it's batteries which are Industrial (brand name) Rechargeable NiMH AA 2250mAh. I'm not sure if these came with it or not. Anyway, the question; Having been burned by NiCad memory in the past, I don't leave stuff charging all the time (look at how many people's laptops won't hold a charge). I go to "Charge Complete" and disconnect. Seems like by a week or so later, if I go to use it I only get an hour or so on battery before the death knell. Is this normal with NiMH batteries; in particular in this unit? Thanx and may your 2012 be a fine one!

I have a 396T. I use the same batteries, 2 sets. I charge them in a La Crosse BC 700 charger.

Amazon.com: La Crosse Technology BC-700 Alpha Power Battery Charger: Home & Garden

I charge 1 set while the other set is in the radio. I carry the radio daily and I rotate the batteries daily.
I get 12+ hours per charge. And it totally eliminates and danger to the radio.

I highly recommend the above charger. It can completely discharge the battery before charging which eliminates any memory effect. It also reconditions older batteries and will tell you when a battery is bad.

The batteries will last longer too. When I was using the radio charger they lasted about six months and I never got more than 6 or 7 hours run time.

On the La Crosse BC 700 charger, well, they are well over 2 years old and still going strong.

It switches to a "trickle charge" when batteries are full (as the 396T does if you leave it plugged in).

The trouble with rechargeable batteries is they have no shelf life. Once the charger is disconnected they begin to slowly discharge.
 

bwhite

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Ok, yeah, I was good with a slow discharge figuring 1-2% per day which after a week or so may have had me down to 4 hours of run time. Other than the charger saying your batteries were shot, how did you know? Lack of run time? Thanx for the scoop on the charger, any particular place you like for batteries for these? Thanx
 

russellmaher

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I am in total agreement with OHIO63 and the points he makes are valid ones. I too have two sets of batteries for my 396T which I alternate daily and this is the way to go IMHO.

The charger will tell you when the batteries will no longer take a charge (mine has a LED that flashes red when they are shot) and the amount of time your scanner will run just keeps getting shorter until it just stops cold.

I strongly advise that you do not charge them in the scanner unless it's an emergency - your 396T is too pricey to chance having a battery meltdown inside it - and the choices of chargers is endless. Go with the one that tickles your fancy at the moment.

As for the batteries themselves, I am using the "Energizer recharge" 2300 mAh nickel-metal hydride, and I've had them for over a year now. They are available at WalMart. I refuse to give any of my business to Radio Shack....let them stick to selling cell phones!!

Russell
 

bwhite

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Thanx, I figured that without an external charger the clue would be lack of run time.
Interesting your comment regarding Radio Shack, I think my next phone will come from there and NOT Verizon as hopefully they do better selling phones than Verizon stores. Below is the majority of my post to my friends on Facebook after a week-long bout with the local Verizon store, (I have a 17 year old daughter); names redacted:
Consumer Alert: Verizon Store-Hampstead/Manchester: Santa finally brought a smart phone to XXXX. Only to hear "who are these people that don't have clothing on and are doing ahhhh, strange things in the photos? And what does "I like ####" mean (picture of some words). Yeah, how strange, brand new phone with 100+ risque photos. Turns out, their story, that someone had pulled her large memory card and tried to put their smaller one in it's place. The dumb A$$ woulda got away with it if he/she had deleted THEIR stuff from the smaller card. Anyway, after fighting various levels, I pulled a few concessions outta them but only after getting very aggressive and telling them all to dress nicely over the next few days as they will undoubtedly be facing news cameras. Anyway, check your purchases to be sure that you got all that you paid for but not the extras. Don't be afraid to mention this if you are in there; I want them to realize the gravity of this; what if XXXX was 10 years old. Geez.
 

Baskt_Case

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Low Self Discharge Batteries

What you need is Low Self-Discharge NiMH's. They will retain 85% of their power after 1 year on the shelf.

Checkout these 4xAA NiMH LSD 2000mAh for $6.99

There are quite a few online retailers with excellent pricing on good rechargeable batteries.
 
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brumey

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I agree with the last post/recommendation. Low Self-Discharge is the way to go. I use only Sanyo Enloop purchased at Costco when they have them in stock. I typically get 8 AA's. 4 AAA and a charger for about $25. They have recently started selling packages without the charger which are $20.00 for I think 12 AA cells.

They retain a charge when on the shelf. My oldest is 3 years and because I cycles them in and out of radios, they are still going strong.

Kevin
 

bwhite

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Well, I was fortunate enough to locate a smart charger that didn't like two of the three batteries I was using. I happened to have some other minimally used high capacity NiMH batts around so I put them thru conditioning and a charge. We'll see how long they go. I'm not so sure I need the low self discharge version as I do use it on battery but perhaps every two weeks. It is good to know they exist if needed though. Now I gotta look over the manual again. I could swear that I saw a number in the upper right corner of the screen that appeared to be battery voltage, but then it disappeared.
 

bwhite

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As it turns out Walmart had several flavors of rechargable batteries, strangely though, be they Energizer, RayOVac, or Duracell, telling what kind of rechargables they were wasn't easy. It wasn't until I got home and ripped open the package that I found that my Energizer pick was a NiMH 2300. The RayOVac's had some charts, etc on them indicating how long they'd hold a charge....looked like 60% after one year. yeah, sure. Anyway Thanx all. http://data.energizer.com/PDFs/nh15-2300.pdf
 

KE5TLF

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All conventional NiMH batteries are built with internal self discharge circuitry. Storing them, or maintaining them in a fully charged state is the worse thing you can do to them.

Low self discharge batteries are also readily available, Sanyos Eneloops being amongst the easiest to find, but they do not have nearly the maximum capacities of conventional NiMH. A fresh set of 2700 mAh will easily last 8 hours in a 396XT with moderate traffic and no backlight. It's the audio amp and backlight that puts the most strain on things. 2000 mAh low self discharge not nearly as long.

Never bought anywhere else but here. Powerex are amongst the best there is. The main thing you want are true Japanese made cells.
Largest selection of AAA, AA, C, D, 9V nimh Rechargeable Replacement Batteries, Chargers, Sanyo, Eneloop, Maha, Imedion, Powerex
 
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russellmaher

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As it turns out Walmart had several flavors of rechargable batteries, strangely though, be they Energizer, RayOVac, or Duracell, telling what kind of rechargables they were wasn't easy. It wasn't until I got home and ripped open the package that I found that my Energizer pick was a NiMH 2300. The RayOVac's had some charts, etc on them indicating how long they'd hold a charge....looked like 60% after one year. yeah, sure. Anyway Thanx all. http://data.energizer.com/PDFs/nh15-2300.pdf
The Energizer shown in the link is the one I've been using for over a year now and I'm happy with the usage I get. Like I said previously, I have two sets for my 396T which I alternate from day to day.

Stopped by WalMart today after work and picked up a package of the RayOVac to try and see how they stack up to the Energizers, just for chuckles.

Hope the Energizers work for you!

Russell
 

bwhite

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Thanks all. I think I'm straight. Got new batts and an external charger. Things seem to be working well powering the unit for a long time.
 
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