Do Batteries Have Memory?
In the 1970s and 1980s, batteries used to have “cyclical memory,” better known as “memory.” That meant the nickel-candmium remembered the amount that was discharged and then would only recharge that amount. By1990, the nickel-metal-hydride was introduced. It was supposed to be “memory-free.” Technology has changed and batteries don’t have a cyclical memory anymore, but they still need to be managed.
The new nickel-based battery has other issues. It creates a substance called Crystalline formation that can build up. This occurs when a battery is overcharged for a period of a couple of months (which is the case for the normal person) and then not discharged completely. When the crystalline formation builds up, it reduces the surface area of the active material and thus reduces its charge.
The way to manage the growth is to ‘exercise” your batteries. Batteries require a periodic discharge down to one volt per cell. In other words, it is important to drain batteries almost all the way down about once every three months.