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After the 3+ year experiment that started in March 2019 we FINALLY have some alkaline battery leakage failures! Did the Duracell's fail?
That pesky potassium hydroxide forming potassium carbonate.
Battery leakage video playlist:
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23 thoughts on “Eevblog 1508 – we finally got alkaline battery leakage!”
  1. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars Ray tech says:

    Almost all alkaline batteries are rubbish in nature , will damage everything where you will use it.
    Duracell is the worst one.😢😢😢

  2. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars Stephen Usher says:

    In a box of 8 Duracell AAs I’ve had 2 fail before they were even used.

  3. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars Jon Freeman says:

    I think modern batteries don't leak anymore. The older generation batteries leaked but now with better chemical formulation and better battery housing it's a thing of the past.

  4. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars B B says:

    These leakers ruined my thermostat.

  5. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars Light & Industrial Control Systems says:

    Zinc Carbon batteries certainly used to leak, Many brown stains in the bottom of draws in my old house to prove it. Maybe the newer ones are better sealed?

  6. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars Christian Schneider says:

    I‘ve got the suspicion that all are made by Murphy Battery Co. and that you have to put them in a device of a certain value to leak. If you got 10 different torches, I bet the one in the most expensive will leak first.

  7. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars misium says:

    also, test new in box batteries

  8. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars mysock351C says:

    A possibility is that they may only really start to leak when confined. In relatively open containers the electrolyte can evaporate. But if it’s confined it could cause accelerated corrosion and the small crusties turn into massive dumps inside your electronics.

  9. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars MrDiggie says:

    Duraleaks have killed so many devices I swapped my entire house to Eneloops one day regardless of the cost.

  10. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars FennecTECH says:

    Im suprised there isnt a single leaking durasmell

  11. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars misium says:

    leakage test in vs out of a circuit

  12. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars Great - Tools says:

    Dave, I hope you can reply to me. I have been meaning to ask you a question for years but I was waiting for a battery video.

    I have a Radio Shack "Miracle Seal" battery from 1988. It is a green battery that says ENERCELL EXTRA LIFE on it. I am in the USA but this battery was made in Japan for Tandy Corp. in Texas. It is a 1.5 Volt battery. As I said I bought it in 1988 and I wanted to see how long it would take to leak or go dead so I put it in my basement in 1988 and I just tested it and it still has 1 Volt left it in.

    My question is, how is it possible for this battery to last 34 years and still have this much power?

    I have to disagree with you about the Duracell batteries. I have some from 1995 to 1998 that are dead and not leaking yet. By far this Radio Shack battery is the best I have ever seen though. Now I see why they called it a "Miracle Seal". This battery is like my friend I've had it so long. I test it once per year and I think it is going to out live me at this rate.

  13. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars 275drago says:

    Chemistry porn

  14. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars Johnathan Chuprun says:

    Battery powered torch? LIke one of those fire imitating lightbulbs? Naw just get a normal flashlight.

  15. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars pa4tim says:

    could it be a chemical reaction to the surrounding ? Like for instance some plastics like some foams falls apart if stored in a plastic bag and the inbetween layer of damping material in hiking shoes falls apart. I have some stored on a floor heated part of the floor and some in a cold part of the house. A few months ago I was sorting them out and the grey soft stuff from some on the heated floor fell apart, the others all were fine. They all were the same brand of sole ( vibram) I used to have a shop that sells outdoor gear and this was a common problem with shoes from custommers. Often 5 to 10 years old shoes but sometimes just 2 years old.

  16. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars Brettus says:

    They all leak if you live in the tropics (Nth Qld in my case but Darwin was worse) so it's the heat with humidity. We always stored batteries in the fridge when I was in the military…
    Easy leak test is to sniff the end of the negative terminal as it will smell similar to vinegar which is also what I use to clean the terminals, case and circuit board (neutralises the acid) of the equipment/remotes and finish with metho in a spray bottle to dry after they have spewed their guts!
    I solely use quality rechargeable NiMH (supposedly long storage types) or single cell LiFePO4 or LiPo (from RC parts suppliers) and modified for tv remotes etc depending on use case now.

  17. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars Ecospider5 says:

    Yes get 10 devices to test them in.

  18. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars Cream Of Botulism Soup says:

    I suspect that the whole duraleak thing is just due to the fact that they make significantly more batteries than anyone else. Confirmation bias being what it is, people associate them with being leaky simply because they are more common.

    In my experience all alkaline batteries leak, doesn't really matter who made it.

  19. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars reasonablebeing says:

    I stopped using Duracell years ago after an umpteenth leak cleanup and switched to Energizer. I haven't had any leak problems since.

  20. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars T ME says:

    I recently had a box of varta ( still in their original box ) with several batteries leaked

  21. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars Breeze says:

    My theory is that the propensity for a cell to leak is directly proportional to the damage it is going to cause, or more precisely how expensive it will be to fix or replace the damaged device! Of course your test didn't show much leakage. No expensive electronics were harmed in the filming of this vlog!

  22. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars ramosel says:

    After watching the beginning of this test in 2019, I came across some Kodak AA batteries I’d had since I worked for them in the 90s. The pick ticket from the parts system was dated 1994. Much to my surprise, none of them had any signs of leaking. Even more shocking was they all metered out just over 1.6v. The he highest was 1.64v. I put them in a couple of small clocks and they worked for months. I’ve been writing on the back of the clock and so far the Kodaks lasted about 45 days loners than any Energizer or Amazon Basics. I’m guessing they were made by Eastman Chemical but I don’t think they make batteries today.

  23. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars SeanBZA says:

    Would also say it is a batch and plant thing, with the different batches made in different plants having a different time to leakage. Different machines stretch the steel case differently, and leave thinner metal in the side, so the case ruptures on some, and a burr on the die leaving a thin positive metal pressing edge that popped.

    Would say you want to take a few different cells, different batches, different brands, and do a stress test on them, probably involving first discharging to flat by using the 1k resistor, then start to charge them using a 5V supply and a 1M resistor to give a trickle charge.

    Carbon zinc batteries use the same manganese dioxide depolariser, but instead use an ammonium chlorate paste as electrolyte, almost dry, mixed with the depolariser and a filler, often wood dust.The old air depolarised ones had a much thicker zinc case, and a full volume of the paste in contact with the carbon rod positive, but would only be able to supply a 100mA load for an hour before drooping down to almost nothing, till they had gained enough oxygen from the air, via a vent plug sealed with (on old ones) with balsa wood plugs, or a fired ceramic on later ones. Those were in phones, to power farm lines, and might last a half century in service.

    To get them to cook off nicely take a few packs of the batteries and put in your attic, or under the solar panels in a nice ziploc food baggie, and leave for the summer, so the thermal cycling takes them out. Ziploc so they keep dry, but cook nicely under the panels in the sun. They survive in the AC, thermal stress will kill them quickly. I had to toss away a good number of AA and AAA packs that did that, left in the garage and being done over by thermal cooking and humidity in Durban winter, they die much faster in summer when it clocks over 40C in there.

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