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Which? Best Buy batteries

by Sarah Ingrams

The best AA disposable batteries will last more than seven hours longer than the worst in some of your devices. We’ve tested AA and AAA batteries to reveal the best for your budget.

Put us to the test

Our Test Labs compare features and prices on a range of products. Try Which? to unlock our reviews. You'll instantly be able to compare our test scores, so you can make sure you don't get stuck with a Don't Buy.

You can spend up to £7 on a pack of four disposable batteries. Or you can use the results of our tests to save money - as we've found that the priciest batteries aren’t always the best. Which? independent reviews reveal which alkaline and lithium batteries will last the longest, whatever device you use them in.

Our tests go further than anyone else’s to make sure the Best Buy batteries that we recommend are up to the job. We also show you how much they cost per hour, to help you pick the best for your budget. Plus we highlight any batteries that score very poorly in our testing, so you don’t waste your cash on a short-lived battery.

  • We test the batteries in the most and least power-hungry conditions you’re likely to use them in. So you can be sure that whatever device you put them in - from a power-guzzling child's toy to a clock - your Best Buy battery will last longer than others. In high-drain devices, such as digital cameras and remote-controlled cars, our Best Buys give you almost two-and-a-half hours’ more use than rival batteries. You get seven extra hours in medium-drain appliances, such as outdoor Christmas lights or games-console controllers.
  • We uncover the batteries that are most likely to leak when they’re flat, ruining your remote control, camera or torch.
  • Which? reveals the cost per hour of each battery – so you can find the best one for your type of device, at the best price for you.

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How we uncover the best batteries

Every year, we analyse more than 1.5m pieces of data in our disposable batteries tests. So when you use a Best Buy battery, you can be sure that it will power your devices for longer than rival batteries. 

  • High-drain battery life Taking a motorised toy or remote-controlled device as our model, we measure how long each battery lasts in some of the toughest conditions you’re likely to use it in at home. The best last up to two and a half hours longer than the worst.
  • Medium-drain battery life Simulating the types of devices you use often - such as games-console handsets - we time how long each battery will power them. The best batteries will give you seven hours more power than the worst.
  • Low-drain battery life We know you use your batteries in low-drain devices too, such as clocks. So we also compare which batteries last the longest in these devices.
  • Leakage We store flat batteries to see whether they’re likely to leak if left in your device. The worst brand had several batteries leak after six weeks, which could irreversibly damage your device if you don't spot it.

Battery reviews you can trust

Batteries from the biggest brands, such as Duracell and Energizer, go head to head in our testing with supermarket own-brands. And the results show that the priciest aren’t always the best.

Which? is independent - we work for you, the consumer, so you can be sure that our product recommendations are influenced only by our test results. We don't take advertising and we buy all the products that we test ourselves, so our advice helps you to make the right choice first time and avoid costly mistakes.

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