I really like the convenience of rechargeable electronics, but they can also be a headache. Sometimes I feel like I'm always recharging something, so I thought I'd see just how bad it is by making a list:
Things I have to recharge
- Mobile phone
- Bluetooth headset
- Digital camera
- Wireless computer mouse
- Notebook computer
- Beard trimmer
- Electric razor
- Electric screwdriver
- Dremel rotary tool
- Cordless drill
- Hedge trimmer
The list is shorter than I expected, but I think the real challenge is not the number of things to recharge, but managing everything so it's ready when I want to use it. This can be tough when it comes things I use very rarely, but want to be charged when I need it, like my cordless drill. It came with two batteries, but despite having used it ~5 times and rotating the batteries once in a while, one is dead & the other holds only a small charge. I guess that's why it was only $49. In fact, buying two replacement batteries would cost just about as much as a new drill (of the same type)!
Not all rechargeable electronics are created equal. Here are my preferences for the major types:
- Works with a power cord attached in addition to battery power. Example: notebook computers.
- Takes standard batteries (rare these days) in addition to rechargable ones. Example: my old digital camera (If I ever ran low on power, I could stop at a store or gas station almost anywhere and get batteries.)
- Reasonable: Permits easy battery swapping. This is fine, provided battery cost isn't exorbitant. Example: modern digital cameras.
- Bad: Uses integrated rechargable batteries. Example: my electric razor and screwdriver. Both of these have lasted and performed very well, but why not give them virtually infinite life with a replacable battery? These devices fall into the category of unnecessarily disposable items, about which I'll write another time.
What's on your list of things to recharge?