How to Use Batteries to Charge a Cell Phone

Nearly everyone in the United States today and many around the world has a cell phone.These mobile devices offer connection, both in being able to speak to others via phone calls and in messaging or using social media. This makes them an important part of the life of most people who own them.

Because they are used often, if not incessantly, the battery must be recharged regularly. Many plug the phone into a charger overnight, while others have chargers that do not require a plug, but in either case, they do require electricity. In a situation when there is no electricity, the need to recharge a cell phone battery can be distressing. However, there are ways to handle this situation. One of these is to use batteries.

There are different types of batteries that can be used to charge a cell phone. Of course, a power bank is a form of battery (and is listed below)but it is not what most people think about when someone says “batteries.” Most people think of the type of batteries that come in AA, AAA, C, D, and 9-volt, and yes, these can be used to charge a cell phone. Another battery option is a car battery, which is often the battery of choice for such applications when camping or in a survival preparation situation.

Using a Computer Battery

A laptop computer’s battery usually retains a charge for a while. Because of this, it may be possible to plug the cell phone into a laptop and recharge it a few times before the laptop’s battery needs to be recharged.

Using a Portable Battery

Portable batteries, also known as power banks, hold enough power to recharge a cell phone two or three times before needing to be recharged themselves. Since they are usually relatively small, it is not difficult to store a few of them – fully charged – to have on hand in case of a power outage. Choose power banks that have a high capacity for best results. It will be necessary to check them occasionally to be sure they are still fully charged and charge them if some loss has occurred.

Using a Car or Marine Battery

A car or marine battery offers between 6V and 24V, which is plenty to charge a cell phone. What will be needed is an adapter to divert the power into the phone. An inverter is easy to get from a store with an automotive section; this will allow you to change the energy from the larger battery to the proper level for the smaller one. Car and marine batteries have enough capacity to recharge a cell phone several times, but be careful not to run the battery too low before recharging it (the battery in your car will recharge when it runs) or the battery may not recharge.

Using Standard Batteries

To use standard batteries, it is necessary to have them in a device that can be attached via USB to the mobile device. There are flashlights and lanterns made now that are powered by batteries of various sizes (ranging from AAA to 6V) that have USB ports built in for charging mobile devices. There are also some power banks that are made to use replaceable batteries.

It is possible to connect 1.5V batteries (AAA, AA, C, or D) in a series (positive side to negative side along the line – three or four are needed) to give a small charge to a phone battery; this will involve actually connecting wires to the battery terminals on the ends of the series and on the phone battery, so accessing the battery in the phone is a requirement for this method.

A 9-volt battery can be used to connect to a car adapter by setting the center post on the car charger against the positive side of the 9-volt battery and using a metal wire or pen spring to connect the negative on the battery to the negative connection on the side of the car adapter while the USB is connected to the phone. It will not charge the phone fully, as it only has 500mAh (most phones hold 1600-3000 mAh), but it will give you enough power to send a text or two or call someone briefly.

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Where to Buy

FosPower Emergency Solar Hand Crank Portable Radio, NOAA Weather Radio for Household and Outdoor Emergency with AM/FM, LED Flashlight, Reading Lamp, 2000mAh Power Bank USB Charger and SOS Alarm

Gomadic Portable AA Battery Pack Designed for The Apple iPhone - Powered by 4 X AA Batteries to Provide Emergency Charge. Built Using TipExchange Technology

AmazonBasics 48 Pack AA High-Performance Alkaline Batteries, 10-Year Shelf Life, Easy to Open Value Pack

Energizer NH15BP-8 Rechargeable AA Batteries, 2300 mAh, Pre-Charged, 8 count (Recharge Power Plus)

Success4Sport Portable AA Battery Travel Charger for Samsung Galaxy S III (Straight Talk) and Emergency Re-Charger with LED Light! (Takes 4 AA Batteries) [White]

Enevolt USB Battery Charger for AA AAA Rechargeable Batteries and Battery Operated Portable Power Bank - 2in1 Gosy Black

 

Resources

Triple Power Source Power Bank

This 2000mAh power bank can easily charge a cell phone. It uses AAA batteries to power the charger (as well as a weather radio, flashlight, and alarm), but these can also be charged with the hand crank on the side or solar power if the sun is shining.

iPhone AA Battery Pack

4 AA batteries power this battery pack designed for iPhones.

Alkaline AA Batteries

48 AA batteries with a 10-year shelf life will easily keep the power bank ready to charge a cell phone at any moment.

Energizer Rechargeable AA

8 rechargeable batteries will recharge mobile devices between being recharged themselves.

Portable Emergency Recharger AA

4 AA batteries will charge whatever cell phone is attached to this portable charger. It has a USB port and features a flashlight if the power is not needed for a mobile device.

USB Battery Charger Portable Power

This charger holds four batteries in AA or AAA size. This power bank will recharge the batteries if connected to an input, and these batteries will recharge a mobile device through the output. Batteries must be Ni-MH rechargeable batteries.