Battery Corrosion | Why They Leak And How To Avert It



Why Do Batteries Leak?

How a lot of of you have encountered a corroded battery compartment in one particular of your customer devices? No doubt that most of us have noticed the ‘white fluff’ of battery corrosion which has migrated into the battery terminals. It creates a mess and may perhaps ruin the device all-with each other.

– Here’s Why battery corrosion takes place.
– How to stop battery corrosion.
– How to clean it up.

I’m referring to common customer batteries such as AA or AAA size.

(See under for Automobile Batteries / corrosion)

Energizer Assure | No Leak

UPDATE, Energizer guarantees that these specific batteries will NOT corrode. I created the switch and can attest that none of them have leaked:

What is the White Fluff Corrosion on the Battery?


Potassium Carbonate is the white fluffy corrosion that develops at the ends of the battery. It is most generally noticed at the Adverse ( – ) finish of the battery.

The “alkaline” of the battery is potassium hydroxide. It is the alkali equivalent of acid’s hydrochloric acid. This will leak out, forming a white “fluff” of potassium carbonate.  It usually leaks on the unfavorable finish of the battery cell. Why? Apparently the good finish is vented much better.

Why Do Batteries Leak?

As batteries discharge, the chemistry modifications and some hydrogen gas is generated.

This out-gassing method increases stress in the battery.

Ultimately, the excess stress may perhaps rupture the insulating seals at the finish of the battery, or the outer metal canister, or each.

Dead (AA | AAA) Batteries may perhaps Leak

All batteries will gradually steadily self-discharge more than time. This will take place no matter whether they are setting on the shelf (a a great deal slower method) or installed in a device (which generally happens a great deal faster). And dead batteries may perhaps sooner or later leak, resulting in the “white fluff” corrosion.

Higher Temperatures

Higher temperatures can also result in batteries to rupture and leak (hot, summer season atmosphere).

Most Preferred AA Battery Caddy:

Why Do Batteries Corrode If Left Installed?

Customer alkaline batteries (such as the prevalent AA or AAA) can sooner or later leak and corrode although on the shelf. With that mentioned, batteries that are left installed in devices are additional probably to leak. Here’s why…

Self Discharged &amp Parasitic Drain

These batteries will steadily and naturally self-discharge. They will discharge even faster when modest trickle currents gradually drain the battery (‘parasitic drain’). Consequently this leads to a dead battery (or batteries) which will out-gas and corrode.

A slow parasitic battery drain is prevalent in a lot of devices. It will gradually discharge the batteries till they’re ‘dead’. As a outcome, the batteries may perhaps sooner or later leak.

A device that is left unattended for extended periods of time (with the batteries installed) may perhaps drain down gradually and kill the batteries.


A clock show screen on a transportable radio is one particular excellent instance of parasitic drain. When the device is turned off, the clock continues to draw down the battery, albeit incredibly small. A ‘find me’ dimly lit LED is a different instance. Numerous modern day devices have active circuitry which is generally ‘on’ to some extent. This will gradually drain the batteries although you may perhaps not even understand it.

How To Avert Battery Corrosion

Acquire Energizer MAX brand batteries (shown above). They’re assured not to leak.

Connected post: Batteries That Will not Leak Or Corrode

And/Or, Eliminate the batteries from devices that will not be employed for a considerable period of time.

This will stop a slow discharge of the batteries and as a result stop leakage when the batteries get low or go dead. Dead or low batteries are additional probably to leak.


You may well have a transportable radio set aside for emergencies. Or perhaps you haven’t employed it for months and months. You need to get rid of the batteries from the battery compartment to stop a prospective slow discharge and the resulting leak and corrosion.

How To Clean Battery Corrosion


Alkaline Batteries:

To clean up the corrosion ‘fluff’ triggered by leaking ALKALINE batteries:

– Vinegar or Lemon juice.
– Soak and swab a Q-tip more than the terminals.

Automobile Batteries:

Batteries with an ACID makeup (e.g. automobile batteries), how to clean up battery corrosion:

– Mix a resolution of baking soda and water to make a sort of paste resolution.
– This will neutralize the acidic corrosion of the battery terminals.

Finest reviewed jumper cables:

Continue reading: Finest Jumper Cables ( Size &amp Gauge )

Finest Rechargeable AA, AAA Batteries

(This post has been updated to reflect the most current info. Considering the fact that switching to Energizer MAX, my battery corrosion challenges have disappeared.)


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