Can An Eraser Really Bring An Old Battery Back To Life?

There's nothing worse than finding the battery has run out on your remote control or even worse, your child's favorite toy! However, if you don't have any backup batteries, that can surely qualify. Many of us, when in a pinch, will shake the object with the batteries in it in order to wake up the charge and get it working for a few more minutes. Sometimes an eraser can do the trick even better.

All you have to do is rub the tip of a pencil eraser or stand-alone eraser on either side of a battery, where the charge is expelled. In the case of batteries that are slowly losing their charge, that can help remove any excess nickel or iron oxide on the outside. This may help unleash a little extra charge that you can use briefly. The theory is that the eraser can release a small amount of electricity when it is rubbed against the battery terminals. This electricity can temporarily charge the battery, although, it is not enough to bring a dead battery back to life.

Corroded and leaking batteries

An eraser can sometimes temporarily improve the battery's performance, but it is not a permanent solution. Older batteries might leak potassium hydroxide but it doesn't appear as a liquid. Instead, you'll see white powdery material on the ends of the battery. If a battery is corroded or leaking, you should not use it and instead dispose of it properly. Potassium hydroxide is caustic and it can irritate your nasal passages, lungs, eyes, and skin. Take proper precautions whenever handling old batteries. Wear gloves to remove leaking batteries and clean out the device that the batteries were in before you use it again.

Though an eraser can be helpful for getting a few minutes of extra charge from a battery, if you have an old battery that is not working, it is best to replace it with a new one. Though they can be cheap, batteries at dollar stores are often sitting on shelves for very long periods of time and may already be old. To prolong the life of a battery, store batteries in a cool, dry place. Avoid storing them in direct sunlight or near heat sources, and do not mix different types of batteries together.