I have a box of batteries sitting around waiting to be recycled, and it mocks me with its wastefulness every time I look at it. We’ve switched to rechargeable batteries for almost everything, but have accumulated a lot of “regular” batteries over time.
Rather than just give up and recycle them, I wanted to test them and see if any of them had juice left. Sometimes a battery can be too low to work in some items (like my camera) but can still power something else (like a kid’s toy).
Testing household batteries is easy and you don’t need a special battery tester. You do, however, need to dig through the piles on the garage workbench until you find the multimeter. In our house, this is no easy feat.
4. Lather, rinse, and repeat until you’ve finished the entire box. I had a lot of duds (the pile on the right) and 10 that were still good. Since batteries are about $1 apiece, a few minutes of testing saved 10 bucks’ worth from unnecessary recycling!