Have you heard about AA batteries and AAA batteries and still don’t know the difference or can’t tell them apart? Well, worry no more. We are here to help you out. This article will help you understand the difference between AAA Battery Vs AA, what AA and AAA battery means, which battery to use, where and why, and who should buy either AA or AAA battery.
First, there are many differences between the two types of batteries, such as the probable power supply and the size of the battery. However, the most important variance between them is the size of the battery. Ideally, the batteries are named AAA and AA due to their measurement and size.
Don’t worry about the initials AA. They don’t attribute to anything. It is just an identifier for the batteries by their size and the nominal output voltage. The more the alphabet, the smaller the size of the battery. Before we dive right into the AAA vs. AA batteries, it is important to understand each of them.
What Is An AA Battery?
AA batteries, also called double-A batteries, are the standard size of cylindrical dry batteries. The AA battery comprises one electrochemical cell, either a disposable battery or a rechargeable battery. Both have a different chemical composition for their structure. The specific terminal capacity, voltage, and practical output rate depend on the cell electrochemistry composition. However, the devices mostly designed to use AA batteries take only 1.2v-1.5v unless the producer states.
Usually, an AAA battery has a smaller size than an AA battery. Their size is the most important since they are used on different size-specific devices. For example, you cannot use an AA battery on an AAA battery size device; but you may need to use adapters to help with the connection if you want to do that.
In addition, the batteries differ in their power supply and their usage. For example, since AA batteries are bigger and wider, they are mostly used on bigger or bulky equipment such as cameras and toys. However, depending on the configuration of the device you are buying batteries for, they could either use AA or AAA batteries.
Therefore, the size of the battery you buy depends on the battery slot of the device you want to use. Big toys and bigger equipment require AA batteries since they contain more power supply and longer endurance than AAA batteries. However, it is important to understand your device and its configuration before purchasing the batteries.
What Is An AAA Battery?
AAA batteries, also called triple-A batteries, are the standard sizes of dry cell batteries. An AAA battery is an electrochemical cell, usually disposable, also called a primary battery or a rechargeable battery. The AAA batteries are dependable and give a long-run power supply to devices such as smoke detectors and flashlights.
They are mainly used on low-drain power transportable electronic devices, whether using one or more AAA batteries. In addition, the rechargeable AAA batteries are more effective, and their security seal offers resistance to corrosion and leakages. They perform well at lower temperatures than those primary aqueous electrolyte disposable cells.
The AAA batteries can be lithium, alkaline, NiMH, zinc-carbon, or zinc-chloride.
IEC designates the zinc-carbon batteries of this size as R03 and other manufacturers differently.
Ideally, the national standard descriptions contrast depending on the cell chemicals used. But the size was first introduced by one company in 1911, The American Ever Ready Company.
The AAA battery is a single cell with a diameter of 10.5 mm, and a length of 44.5 mm, including both the positive and the negative terminal buttons. The positive terminal button is about 0.8mm in length and has a diameter of 3.8 mm on the maximum side. On the other hand, the negative terminal is a flat side and has a diameter of 4.3mm on the lower side.
Typically, AAA batteries weigh about 11.5g, while primary AAA batteries weigh 7.6g. Besides, the AAA rechargeable nickel-metal hydride batteries weigh about 14-15 g.
AAA batteries are mostly used on small electronic devices such as digital cameras, MP3 players, and TV remotes. If a device requires a similar voltage but has high power draw, they are often designed to use larger batteries such as AA batteries. This is because they have close to three times the power capacity of AAA batteries.
Due to modernization and technological advancement, most devices have been increased in inefficiency and miniaturized. Most devices designed to use AA batteries, such as the cordless computer mouse, TV remote control, and even keyboards, have been replaced by models that can use AAA batteries. This makes them less bulky, hence portable, and increases the efficiency of the devices.
Depending on your needs, you may need different chemistry of the AAA batteries. For instance, suppose you want to get a convenient, cost-effective, and single-use battery, you may want to select the alkaline chemistry or may price carbon-zinc batteries. If you are looking for a longer lifespan and higher power supply, you may want to choose an AAA battery with lithium chemistry.
What Is The Difference Between AAA Battery Vs AA?
There are numerous differences between AAA and AA batteries. For example, talking about their usage often varies, although there are no strict laws and regulations on when and where to use either battery. The only thing to keep in mind is the device power consumption, whether the device power consumption is higher or lower.
For instance, if a device uses more power, the ideal batteries are the AA batteries. Toys that are often batteries operated require a higher power consumption than smaller battery-operated torches. You will need to use more than one cell to raise the voltage and increase the lifespan and operating time of the device.
AAA batteries often have a lower power supply and are used on small portable devices that don’t need more power for their operation, such as wall clocks and remote controls. These AA batteries for use in small devices are often alkaline. It is a composition of steel and a mixture of manganese/ potassium/ graphite/ plastic and paper. The batteries are recyclable due to their toxic materials in use.
For the rechargeable batteries, one would need to have a battery charger that perfectly charges your batteries. Supposing you have the two batteries AA and AAA batteries, you should find a charger that perfectly charges the two batteries just fine. Charges for AA and AAA batteries often have a flexible part fitted with a spring that helps fix the battery while charging. In general, a battery charger should not treat either AA or AAA batteries differently.
The notable differences between AAA battery vs. AA batteries include:
- The batteries are wider and longer.
- The batteries have a longer lifespan than the AAA batteries, majorly because of their bigger storage capacity
- The batteries are used to operate devices that require a higher power supply, such as big toys and cameras
- The batteries are smaller than the AA batteries
- The batteries have a shorter lifespan than the AA batteries, mainly because they run their chemical juice composition faster than AA batteries.
- The batteries operate small portable devices that require lower power input, such as wall clocks, remote controls, and computer mice.
What Is The Composition Inside The AAA And AA Batteries?
Other than the power, size, and lifespan of batteries, both batteries have similar chemical compositions.
Both batteries have both anode and cathode sides. The anode is the positive side of the battery, while the cathode is the negative part of the battery. Also, the batteries have an electrolyte, which is the chemical that separates the anode and the cathode in the battery and helps transfer electrolytes and convert the chemical energy to electrical energy for use by the device.
However, it is worth noting that their chemical composition may be different depending on the batteries and whether they are either primary batteries or rechargeable batteries.
Most of the AAA and AA primary batteries are made of zinc-carbon. It is often decomposed immediately after they run out of its chemical juice. On the other hand, most of the AAA and AA rechargeable batteries are made of Ni-MH, mixed with other materials that can be recycled in case they become powerless.
FAQs About AAA Vs. AA Battery
Which brand of AA battery has a longer lifespan?
The brand that lasts the longest is the Energizer Ultimate Lithium battery. It is the world’s long-lasting brand with a very impressive performance. It has about 20 years of storage lifespan and can endure temperatures between -40 0C to 600C without failure.
What does AA, and AAA stand for?
As earlier mentioned, the AA doesn’t signify anything. The AA is just an identity for the batteries, given their different dimensions and the voltage output.
When buying a battery for your device, ensure you know the battery slot and the device’s configuration. This will always help you avoid making the mistake of getting the wrong battery. Bigger devices such as toys require bigger batteries, while the small portable devices such as remote control, and computer mice, among others, require small-sized batteries.
The AAA and AA vary in their usage. In addition, there are numerous battery brands in the market that sell AAA and AA batteries. The common brands include Smart cell, Panasonic, Duracell, Eveready, Amazon Basics, and Nippo among others. Good luck with your purchase!
Batteries are an essential part of our lives. If we look closely, we will find various appliances that are running with a battery. Batteries were invented to make our life easier and make things portable. Also, some batteries can take some places in your garage. Deep cycle batteries, golf cart batteries there are so many battery types that we hardly know about.
I am Jason D. Thompson, a passionate electronic worker. I’ve been working with batteries for a long time. I got to know that many of you struggle with buying batteries. For this reason, I’ve created a team that will test various batteries and makes a list that can help you with choosing the right one.