Remote batteries — like everything else — have a lifespan. During their lifetime, the batteries keep getting weaker until they can no longer power the remote.
The lifespan for remote batteries varies; it can be anywhere from six months to two years. Some battery types have more charge capacity than others, so they last longer.
However, apart from the innate qualities of the battery, several external factors can also influence how long the batteries in your remote control last.
There have been complaints about remote batteries dying too fast. In this article, we’ll explore why your remote’s batteries aren’t lasting as long as they should.
Let’s get started!
How Long Do Remote Batteries Last? (Under Normal Use)
As we mentioned earlier, battery lifespan varies based on the battery type, capacity, and how you use it.
Low-drain devices like remote controllers and wall clocks do not require high-capacity batteries. Even if their batteries are still working, it is best to change them yearly to avoid leaks and corrosion.
Under normal usage, the batteries in your remote should last more than six months. However, if you use your remote controller very often, the batteries will die faster because they’re working overtime.
If your remote batteries don’t last even though you use the remote moderately, you probably bought a bad batch of batteries.
Why Are The Batteries in My TV Remote Dying So Fast?
Remote batteries may not be expensive, but they still cost money. You have probably spent a small fortune on replacing dead batteries, and now you’re ready for some answers.
If you think the batteries in your remote keep dying faster than they should, consider the possible causes outlined in this section!
When you carelessly handle your remote control, you may sit on it or bury it under heavy objects.
Every time you press a button, you use a bit of the battery’s power. If you or any heavy objects press down on the remote’s buttons continuously, the battery will drain!
Since you’re oblivious to this, the buttons may remain pressed down for a long period, shortening the battery life significantly or draining it completely.
If you have objects or fixtures between you and your TV (or other media devices), you’ll probably experience interference while using your remote.
Most remotes use infrared (or IR) light to deliver commands. This light requires a clear path to the media device. If there’s an obstruction in its path, the command won’t reach the media device.
Interference also happens when you use a remote from a long distance. Ambient light overloads the device’s sensors, causing it to not detect the IR beam from the remote.
Interference leads to multiple attempts to issue a command. The battery life drains even more when you press buttons repeatedly to get a response.
This is the time it takes your TV (or other devices) to receive a signal from the remote and respond to the command. The response should be immediate, but you may find that your TV begins to lag.
The delay period is usually two to five seconds, which is a long time to wait for a response. Most people press their remotes repeatedly, assuming it speeds up the response time.
However, this assumption is false. Repeatedly pressing and holding down buttons only drains your battery faster.
You don’t need a science class to know that old batteries and new ones do not do well together. If you didn’t already know that, now you do.
Old batteries are already dying out and cannot power your remote controller as effectively as they should. When you mix an old battery with a new one, there is an obvious imbalance.
The difference in charge capacity will cause the old battery to drain even faster, causing it to leak or explode. This imbalance also occurs when you mix batteries of different sizes or brands.
If you are going on a trip, your remote controllers will remain unused for an extended period.
While the battery charge capacity may not be draining, the batteries can reach their shelf life or period of expiry. At this time, they’ll go bad and leak corrosive chemicals, which can damage the remote’s internal components.
Here are a few tips to help you preserve your remote’s battery life:
- Portable remote control holders are a great way to organize your remotes after use.
- Remember that remotes are not toys — keep them away from kids and pets. Their buttons should not be pressed when the TV is switched off.
- Before using your remote, ensure that there is nothing in the way.
- Only use fresh batteries of the same charge capacity, size, and brand in your remote.
- Fix the lag on your remotes by taking out the batteries and pressing all the buttons to adjust any stuck button. Repeat this process multiple times if you have to.
- Before you store a remote controller, please take out the batteries.
Which Batteries Are Best for the TV Remote?
Remote controllers use either AA or Triple-A (AAA) batteries.
AA and AAA batteries are basically different in size —AA batteries are 4mm wider and 5.5mm longer than AAA batteries. Both batteries supply the same voltage, but AA batteries have higher charge capacity and last longer.
Whether AA or AAA, batteries come in different types. There are zinc carbon batteries, alkaline batteries, and lithium batteries.
Zinc carbon batteries are composed of ammonium chloride. They are the most common and affordable type of battery.
Zinc carbon batteries have a low shelf life and a very high chance of leakage. They have a meager charge capacity, so they are used in devices with equally low energy consumption.
Alkaline batteries have a higher charge capacity (2500 mAh) and longer shelf life (five to eight years) than zinc carbon batteries. Under average use, an alkaline battery will last up to two years in your remote.
These batteries supply a steady voltage and are more leak-resistant. They are also relatively inexpensive.
This battery type is leak-proof and has a higher energy density than other battery cells. Lithium batteries have a charge capacity of 2700 – 3400 mAh and a 10 – 12 year shelf life.
However, lithium batteries are expensive. They are a bit of an overload for TV remotes. Under bad usage conditions, they present a fire or explosion hazard.
Out of these three battery types described above, alkaline batteries are the best for use in TV remotes. They are affordable, durable, and eco-friendly.
Our remote controllers are essential devices used in the home and office. These remote controllers are powered by batteries which come in different types.
A good pair of batteries should last between six months and two years under normal usage. However, changing the batteries in your remote after a year of use is good practice.
If you notice that the batteries drain faster than they should, you’re doing something wrong! To get the best out of your remote’s batteries, practice the tips outlined in this article.
Gabriella ‘Diogo is a content writer with a vested interest in tech hardware and equipment. She shares her knowledge and processes in an easy-to-grasp, lighthearted style. When she’s not testing or researching device performance, you’ll find her writing short stories or rewatching episodes of her favorite sitcoms.