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Items That Use Batteries

Ian Farquharson

According to the American Chemical Society, the development of the modern battery dates back to experiments on frogs in the late 1700s. From this unusual start, the battery has grown to become an indispensable part of everyday life. Disposable, button and rechargeable batteries power a wide range of items, and a quick look around a home will show many of these.

Mobile Devices

Batteries power a wide variety of modern items

Mobile devices play a part in the lives of most people, with these typically powered by rechargeable batteries. The most obvious example is a cell phone, with the latest models useful for a variety of purposes from communication to entertainment. Other common examples include devices such as portable music and DVD players, electronic book readers and GPS units.


Still picture cameras including film and digital models may use disposable batteries, although many come supplied with a rechargeable battery. Video equipment, such as camcorders can also use disposable or rechargeable batteries, depending on the model. Security and CCTV cameras can operate by battery power to make them easier to move around, as well as useful for locations away from grid electricity.

Small Household Items

Most media equipment, from televisions to stereos and DVD players in the home have battery powered remote controls. Other household items which typically operate using disposable batteries include doorbells, radios, torches, and safety equipment, such as smoke and carbon monoxide detectors.

Home Appliances

The kitchen of a home can hold battery-powered appliances, with common examples, including electric salt and pepper mills, electric carving knives, blenders and hand-held mixers. Batteries can also power personal grooming appliances, such as electric shavers, hair trimmers and toothbrushes.

Portable Computers

Portable computers can prove a useful tool for personal or work purposes, and many people like to carry these. Common styles include notebooks, tablets and pad computers. These function using custom rechargeable batteries. Cordless computer accessories, such as a mouse or keyboard, will also use battery power.

Toys and Games

Battery operated toys, which move and make noises, can enhance the playing experience for children. These come in a wide variety of styles, shapes and sizes, with most using disposable batteries. Hand-held video games also operate by battery power.

Cordless Tools

Cordless tools provide a convenient option for construction jobs in areas where grid power is not readily accessible. These use custom-fit rechargeable batteries, and common examples include drills, screwdrivers, wrenches, saws and grinders.

Clocks and Watches

Many wall, alarm, and other clocks found in homes use disposable batteries to keep time. Smaller timepieces such as watches can also run by battery power, although they will typically use a round button battery. Small button batteries can also operate slim modern calculators.


Most vehicles, including automobiles, motorbikes and boats, will make use of a larger custom-fit rechargeable battery. Its main purpose involves providing power to get vehicles started, although the many electrical components and devices found in modern vehicles will also draw power from the battery.