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  1. #1
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    New question here. Does the Dinotte AA series light drain batteries while off??

    We have a few sets of the Dinotte 200 AA series lights on various commuters. I generally run them in Sanyo Eneloop batteries. The performance has been fine this winter and I can get almost a week of commuting from the lights before needing to recharge the battery. I love the feature where it blinks at you telling you when you are low on juice.

    I do notice, however, that when I do not run the lights for a few weeks at a time, but the battery pack is left connected to the light engine, it seems to drain the batteries. The lights remain turned off during this idle period, but even when there is plenty of charge left in the battery the last time it is shut off, a month later the light won't fire up unless I recharge the batteries. The Sanyo Eneloop batteries are specifically supposed to hold their charges over time when not in use and that is the main selling point behind them.

    When I suspect I won't need to use the lights for a period I now just disconnect the light engine from the battery pack, but it seems like I should not have to do this.

    Has anyone noticed their Dinotte AA series discharging their batteries over time even when you don't turn the light on?
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  2. #2
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    They all do. that's why a double click turns them on - it's the microncontroller deciding to turn it on when it sees two fast clicks. Pretty much most consumer electronics these days uses similar strategies.

    that said, i'd bet that the self drain on the batteries is probably about what the electronics consumes in standby. either way, you are better off to unplug the battery when not used. BTW, eneloops do self drain like regular NiMH batteries, just much more slowly.

    J.

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by tscheezy
    Has anyone noticed their Dinotte AA series discharging their batteries over time even when you don't turn the light on?
    This has been discussed before, try searching (might have been over at candlepowerforums). An ammeter will tell you whats going on.
    I know the taskled bflex drivers take less than 0.2mA when in sleep so a 2Ah eneloop pack will last over a year like this (ignoring self discharge). The dinotte must draw significantly more than that(5mA) to drain in a few weeks.

    You could add a switch between light and battery.
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  4. #4
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    Or just unplug it.

    J.

  5. #5
    No, that's not phonetic
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    Quote Originally Posted by tscheezy
    I now just disconnect the light engine from the battery pack
    Quote Originally Posted by JohnJ80
    Or just unplug it.
    Great idea.

    It seems like the battery drain should be TINY, and not enough to deplete partially charged batteries over the course of a few weeks or a month. Seems a bit odd. The idea of the engine sitting in "standby" mode and using a small amount of energy all the time makes sense though.
    My video techniques can be found in this thread.

  6. #6
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    I measured the parasitic drain @ ~2.5mA, which is pretty high. But it's not ment to be left plugged in all the time.

    I suspect the batteries are self-discharging as well, which is an age issue with all NiMH, even Eneloops.

  7. #7
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    They recommend that you charge the batteries ~ the day you use them. I imagine they don't hold a charge well. I unplug mine.

  8. #8
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    at 2.5ma, the microcontroller in the light engine is not running in standby. Most uC's in standy take microamps.

    Eneloops tend to be about 1900maH on my Maha 9000 charger/analyzer. If you went to regular NiMH you'd be closer to 2500maH. If you didn't let them sit too many days, you'd probably get more life out of that. Traditional NiMH loses about 1% of capacity for each day you let them sit. So if you let them sit too long, you fight that too.

    The other problem, is that all NiMH (eneloops included) have a sharp knee in the voltage curve. When the voltage starts drooping they lose it fast. It's best to have them fully charged anyhow.

    J.

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