Energizer Rechargeable LED Flashlight with NiMH Battery, made by Eveready|
(You can print this review in landscape mode, if you
want a hardcopy)
Reviewer: Mark Lamendola
I reviewed this flashlight as part of participating in the Amazon Vine program.
In the Vine listings, the product is very similar to this but instead of having
2 AA rechargeable batteries, it has a Varta CP300H button battery. This is a
nickel metal hydride rechargeable battery that produces 1.2VDC. As its name
implies, this battery has 300 mAH of capacity (I looked it up).
The rechargeable AA batteries are not consistent in their mAH ratings; those
typically range from 1200 to 1700 mAH. So if you have the AA version, you will
get more battery run time.
Despite an online search for the product that is physically sitting here next to
me, I could not find it anywhere online. Maybe it is replacing the 2AA version.
If you buy the 2AA version, you will of course have longer run time between
charges. But also, they will take longer to charge. See my Charging Notes,
below, if you want more information. You will also find Technical Notes, below
I don't know the run time on this light, and don't have the technical
information to calculate that from the battery capacity. But the package says 1
hour in high mode and 2 hours in low mode and this sounds reasonable given the
apparent load size and the battery size. I was not able to find any information
on how to switch modes, despite carefully reading both the English and French
instructions that came with the unit. There is just the one switch. If you
quickly tap that switch, the unit goes from low mode to high mode. Tapping again
shuts it off. The default mode is low.
I like this light for many reasons. For example:
- LED means low power usage.
- It's bright enough to read by.
- It makes a great emergency flashlight.
- You can stand it up on its handle end for general illumination.
- You can stand it up on its lens end for a bit less general illumination
because light also comes out of the top of the lens not just the front.
- The light coming out of the front does not get directed into your face.
- It uses a rechargeable battery (I'm putting those in everything now,
instead of paying for alkaline batteries that also create disposal issues),
and the battery charges by dint of just plugging the thing into the wall.
- The battery is widely available for easy replacement, though it will
probably last 3 to 5 years.
- You can plug it into a receptacle, and its photo sensor will turn it on
when light is needed.
- You can plug it into a receptacle, and just leave it on as a path light
for guests who aren't familiar with your home. This assumes your home,
unlike mine, isn't flooded with intensely bright light from a very obnoxious
street light my city installed after being endowed with Porkulus funds to
waste--so now, my taxes are higher to pay for the energy waste and I can't
make my home dark at night.
As with any rechargeable device, you want to give it a full charge before using.
The amount of time this takes depends on two factors:
- The size of the battery (its mAH rating); this determines how big a
bucket you are trying to fill.
- The mAH rating of the charger. This determines how fast you can fill
The manufacturers of this device recommend 15 hours, according to the
package. In looking at the size of the compartment that holds the charging
circuit (buy not actually being able to see inside it), I believe there's not
room for an overcharge protection circuit along with the transformer and
So overcharging is probably an issue, despite the fact the instructions say
you can leave the light plugged in indefinitely without harm. I have read
similar things on other products, only to find the that was not the case. The
solution is to not leave it constantly plugged in. With overcharging, you end up
drying out the electrolyte and thus reducing the life of the battery. Most
rechargeable batteries do have some overcharging protection built into them,
today. However, the purpose of that is to prevent a fire or explosion. I don't
know if it can prevent overcharging completely.
Charging is not linear. As the battery becomes increasingly charged up, its
rate of charge diminishes. After the first three hours of charging this light,
the rest of the time is the equivalent of "topping off the tank."
All LEDs run on about 3VDC to 5VDC; that LED lamp (industry term for a "light
bulb") you screw into an incandescent socket has the required circuitry jammed
into too tiny of a space and hence these lamps create power quality problems
such as low power factor and, due to their switching power supplies, harmonics.