Members' experience by brand with leaking alkaline cells.

Monocrom

Flashaholic
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Aug 27, 2006
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NYC
After having FAR too many Duracells leak on me, I look for Energizers or Ray-O-Vacs. Christmas day, replaced the nearly dead 4-D cells in the large, modern-day lantern we keep in the backroom behind the security desk. Energizer brand in them, replaced with newer Energizers. I bought that lantern about 8 years ago, and I'm usually the one who replaces the batteries in it. It's basically back there for anyone covering my shift during my nights off, in case of an emergency.
 

Jbirk

Newly Enlightened
Joined
Jan 1, 2003
Messages
32
I pretty much swapped everything from Duracell DuraLock Ultra to Energizer Industrial.

I even created a spreadsheet to track expiration dates. Stuff I don’t use like a battery powered radio I simply removed the batteries. It had a 4 pack of Duracell DuraLock Copper Top good until 2025 (no leaks)

In my experience RayOVac all leak too. I had relatively good luck with Duracell Procell (7 year not 10 year and NOT high-drain)… It am replacing 12 of them in the coming weeks because they expired in 2021.

****

I have an atomic radio analog clock thats 24” and takes 1 AA that I love that I cannot find a replacement. When I put a new Energizer in it didn’t work despite it being 1.54v a new though the 1.3v Duracell Procell was still working. When I did put in an Energizer industrial several times it eventually jumped to 3 pm and waited for the time then took about 24 hours to have the right time! I was looking to see if I could buy another one even for $200 but couldn’t find one! I am concerned the connector may be bad but it’s working perfect now, so I won’t touch it. Next time it gets a lithium!

Thermostats get Lithium too next time as does the outdoor Oregon Scientific sensor being it can be 8 F in the winter or 111 F summer…Most household stuff will just get alkaline.

What do you think of Heavy Duty batteries? I have never seen one leak and usually cheap ones come in things like remote controls. I wouldn’t think it would be great for outdoors, but might be better than alkaline in not leaking.
 

bykfixer

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Aug 9, 2015
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White with orange stripe Radio Shack batteries leak after a while. Bought them in bulk around 2005 and still find one in an object from time to time. But the leakage is always minimal and cleans up easily unlike leaked copper top and old bunny cells, which seem to leak a more watery substance and end up ruining the stuff they leaked in.
 

Jbirk

Newly Enlightened
Joined
Jan 1, 2003
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32
The ones I have seen leak put out a white crystal paste that looks like it has pastry table salt in it… and it somewhat eats stuff. Sure vinegar and a-tips clean up a lot, but it can be a mess
 
Joined
Apr 13, 2020
Messages
257
The don't call them Duraleaks for nothing. I do think they have improved though. Had few leaky Everready in the last 10 years, and had some seriously old D cells around that were still good. Whatever those Home Depot were, they were crap. Kirklands no leaks, even quite old, but not sure they sell them anymore. Had alkalines destroy a very expensive portable power analyzer, fortunately we were able to disassemble and wash the PCB (properly). It was conformal coated. The battery contacts dissolved. Ended up replacing with 2x series LiFeP04 pack with a diode to drop some voltage.
 

louie

Flashlight Enthusiast
Joined
Aug 31, 2002
Messages
1,026
Location
Seattle
Burned again! Since I can't justify Eneloops/charger for everything at the office, my Fluke 75 started showing "low battery" (a 9 volt), I changed it and went to test the old one on the ZTS Mini-MBT - which of course had a leaking Duracell in it. Luckily, the goop washed out with water and a toothbrush and doesn't appear to have caused much, if any, damage. 2028 expiration date.

My home ZTS has Eneloops in it.
 

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WC8KCY

Newly Enlightened
Joined
Nov 9, 2020
Messages
20
The vast majority of leakers I've encountered have been Duracells. The RadioShack D cells that I stocked up on when our local RS closed in 2015 all leaked; most were still in the package. I've also had a RadioShack 9V NiMH cell leak while being charged at 10 mA.

I haven't had a Panasonic or RayOVac AA/AAA leak, ever. The Panasonic AA Alkaline Plus Power cells sold in the USA at Dollar Tree stores claim a 10 year shelf life, and my tests rate them at 2051 mAh on average. That's my choice for the one device in my home that requires alkaline AA cells.
 

Noctiluco

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Joined
May 27, 2012
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164
Location
Spain
In my experience, which includes many alkaline batteries with acid leakage, the leakage is mainly caused by the existence of pressure or longitudinal compression force so that the positive and negative contacts of the device circuit with the battery do not fail. Acid has never been spilled on me from a battery that was stored without any pressure.

After several years of exposure in the showcase of a blister pack of 24 AAA batteries strongly compressed by the plastic that held them, most of them spilled the electrolyte.

I think it's clear that to prevent batterys from damaging household appliances, they must be stored without pressure or their discharge space must be checked periodically in each appliance.


I think the brand of the stack has little to do with its damage.
 

Monocrom

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Aug 27, 2006
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I think the brand of the stack has little to do with its damage.
I'm sorry but I can't agree. While I can't specifically say what is wrong. Having had a ton of Duracells leak on me in comparison to practically zero such incidents from brands that directly compete with Duracell, there is clearly a contributing factor in play when it comes to Duracell alkalines.
 

idleprocess

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Feb 29, 2004
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dfw.tx.us
I have had every major brand of alkaline leak under some circumstance in the last several years. I simply do not trust them any more and wish I had stocked up on more Energizer lithiums when Costco was stocking them.
 

Monocrom

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Aug 27, 2006
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Double and triple A Duracell Coppertop: 89% 5 star, 9% 4 star, 132,000+ reviews
Those types of mass reviews on Amazon, Etsy, etc. are worthless. Wonder how many Duracell employees were strongly encouraged to leave positive reviews. As others have mentioned, stick with Energizer lithium AA or AAA's. Or, Eneloops.
 
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bykfixer

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You buy a gadget or product and like like like then post a review but..... how do you feel about the product in 90 days? 6 months? A year?
Point being perhaps that's why so many positive reviews of alkalines.
 
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pnwoutdoors

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Joined
Sep 14, 2008
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176
Location
USA
Here's the issue: All alkaline cells leak given enough time. In my anecdotal experience however, these brands leak at noticably different rates.

I haven't noticed much in terms of differential rates of failure. As you say, long-sitting and little-used alkaline cells all seem to leak. I can't recall ever having had an alkaline cell sit in a flashlight with, say, only a couple uses across a year where it didn't corrode and leak. Irrespective of brand.

I suppose there would be some variation, from brand to brand. Though I've yet to see it.

Of course, for the past decade and more, I've strictly used waterproofed flashlight bodies (w/ o-rings and good thread sealant). So even had I still been using alkalines I suppose I would be experiencing less of that "traditional" leakage problem alkalines seem to have.

Much happier, from a leak standpoint, now that I'm with Li-Ions exclusively. Of course, there's the unquenchable explosion and fire problem, but still.

Another day, different problem, I guess.
 

idleprocess

Flashaholic
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Feb 29, 2004
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dfw.tx.us
I am not a fan of Duracell but that many reviews on Amazon? Can’t be that many faulty reviewers.
The roadblocks that platforms like 'Zon, Google, etc put on review spamming (be it through software bots or 'human macros') may increase steadily, but the incentive to do so is more rewarding thus they will likely endure.
 
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