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Swollen 9V Batteries?

Discussion in 'Pickups & Electronics [BG]' started by Geri O, Nov 8, 2018.

  1. Geri O

    Geri O Supporting Member

    Sep 6, 2013
    Florence, MS
    Was doing my usual battery voltage check and ran into an odd issue for the first time...

    The 2 Eveready 9V batteries had swollen making removal pretty difficult. I had to use two screwdrivers with E-tape wrapped around the shafts to (hopefully) prevent damage to the finish of the bass (which wouldn't be a big deal on the backside of the bass, but...).

    What could cause this? I think I put these batteries in sometime in July and they were new at the time. Can I do anything to prevent this from happening again?

    This time around, I used the Duracell Quantums, which do seem to last a bit longer.

    Thanx for any ideas.

    (You passive-only guys, I'll say this now. I love you all. I really do. But if you feel the need to chime with "ditch the actives"-type responses, not happening. I'll simply laugh, point, and finally take pity on you. You've been warned. All in fun, of course...:D:D)

    Here's one of the offending batteries and the new ones installed (doesn't look irregular, but it was no fun to get out...)

    Maybe the bass shrunk?....:roflmao::roflmao:

  2. I've read that Energizers are the smallest, so use those.
  3. Batteries sometimes swell. Better to have extra room with some foam.
  4. 96tbird

    96tbird PLEASE STAND BY

    Herse what’s inside an Energizer, cells encased in a plastic sleeve and In a duracell, steel jacketed cells. No wonder the Energizers swell. 200B0EDC-8B6F-47AD-897C-FC757F03DAD9. 159CA1D9-130A-4286-B7A7-9D264914D04E.
    JGbassman likes this.
  5. derrico1

    derrico1 Supporting Member

    Apr 12, 2005
    Charlottesville, VA
    In batteries, swelling is best treated as a sign of potentially dangerous failure.
  6. Warpeg

    Warpeg Supporting Member

    Jun 20, 2005
    Yep. Remove and dispose of ANY batteries that show even the slightest sign of swelling. I once opened up a Fishman DB preamp to change the 9V. The battery was swelling. I gently removed the battery and placed it in the trash. The battery exploded 2-3 seconds later, sending battery mess all over the place! I got a small chemical burn on my hand from it. Scary stuff....
  7. Geri O

    Geri O Supporting Member

    Sep 6, 2013
    Florence, MS
    Oh, crap! Sorry to hear of this. And thanx for the heads-up.

    Bad thing is, I tossed both of those batteries in a container on my back porch headed to the chemical disposal facility. They were among a couple of old paint cans with paint still in them as well as some old paint thinner. If they had exploded....:nailbiting::dead:
    pacojas likes this.
  8. Jim C

    Jim C Is that what you meant to play or is this jazz? Supporting Member

    Nov 29, 2008
    Bethesda, MD
    I can tell you that the Duracell's which are recommended by Ernie Ball will not fit all Stingrays as they are larger.
    I measured many batteries with a digital caliper; they are the same from battery to battery and all the standard Duracells were bigger than Everyready.

    Also, I had had a few battery leaks with Duracells and one nearly killed an expensive Fluke meter.
    I will never use them again but do like their Procellls as well as the pink bunny brand.

    Never seen a battery swell; maybe time to look for an issue with the bass.
  9. JRA

    JRA my words = opinion Supporting Member


    i've taken to the lithium-ion batteries for the active electronics. they're pricey but they last --- and i think they're lighter (for those counting ounces/grams).
    Killed_by_Death likes this.
  10. Geri O

    Geri O Supporting Member

    Sep 6, 2013
    Florence, MS

    What brand are you using? A couple of years ago, I tried a lithium, an Eveready, I think in a Stingray. But the battery was physically too large for the weird little flip-out battery box and I haven’t looked for lithium since then.
  11. Thinking about just removing the battery from my passive/active bass, as I don't even use the active controls. I can get what I need at the amp.
    nbsipics and JRA like this.
  12. JRA

    JRA my words = opinion Supporting Member

  13. Allan Allan

    Allan Allan

    Mar 25, 2018
    That's just backed up tone. Just stab the battery with knife to let some of the tone out. Highs are the lightest so they'll come out first, then put some grit or mud over the hole and get back to jamming.
    96tbird and Joedog like this.
  14. I remember plugging two 9-volts into each other when I was a little kid and didn't know any better... I don't remember whether they swelled up or exploded, but I do remember they got quite warm!
  15. nbsipics

    nbsipics It's the Bass that makes them Dance Gold Supporting Member

    Apr 8, 2016
    They work best in a Swollen Pickle...

    EDIT: I hope everyone understands that's a pedal...
    Last edited: Nov 9, 2018
    JGbassman likes this.
  16. JRA

    JRA my words = opinion Supporting Member

    i stepped away to do some work and this came to me: you're putting the battery in that flip-out --- i'm putting it in the control cavity --- so the brand i recommended may not work for you, after all. sorry, i just didn't think it through when i posted earlier! :)
  17. Yango


    Apr 14, 2008
    Don't forget to check on those Duracells. I've had a few of them leak in my various devices, and these were new batteries, no more than 6 months in the unit, and waaaay before the date printed on the battery...

    They actually ruined my Olympus LS 10 a year or so ago. Duracell did however, step up and deal with the problem. They bought me a new one. They didn't take responsibility, but as a goodwill gesture, they replaced my recorder. I was very impressed.

    Check your batteries regularly.
    Alik, 96tbird and Jim C like this.

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