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C Batteries

C batteries come in a standard size that places them between AA and D cells. Commonly used for medium to high-drain devices like flashlights, musical instruments, and portable music players, these dry cell batteries can store more charge than AA units. Staples® carries a selection of long-lasting size C cells from multiple reputable brands.

Consider Cell Chemistry When Shopping for C Batteries
The cell chemistry of a battery determines its capacity, discharge rate, and voltage output while powering devices. Most single-use C power cells are alkaline batteries but there are few zinc-carbon varieties. Zinc-carbon batteries are very affordable and less powerful than alkaline ones. They are best for small low-drain electronics that require size C batteries. The most powerful zinc-carbon C cell has a capacity of 3800mAh. In contrast, an alkaline in size C can store up to 8000mAh of electric charge. This difference means that a device will use up zinc-carbon batteries faster than alkaline ones. For high-drain devices like ultra-bright flashlights and RC toys, get rechargeable C cells.

Power High-Drain Devices With Rechargeable C Batteries
Rechargeable batteries significantly lower the cost of powering electronic devices. With most of them lasting between 500 and 1000 recharges, they easily replace hundreds of disposable batteries. Most rechargeable C batteries are nickel-metal hydride (NiMH) cells. There are rechargeable alkaline and lithium-ion cells in this size but they are rare. While alkaline discharges slower than other types of rechargeable cells, it rapidly loses its capacity with each recharge. Lithium-ion delivers a nominal voltage of 3.7V compared to the 1.2 - 1.5V supplied by alkaline and NiMH cells and expected by most battery-powered devices.

Rechargeable NiMH batteries are ideal for most applications that require C-type batteries. They can store up to 6000mAh of charge and remain in peak condition for up to a thousand discharge cycles. They do have a steep self-discharge rate with most losing up to 15 percent of store capacity per month when left unused. For long shelf life and low-drain devices, choose LSD NiMH rechargeable C batteries. Low self-discharge NiMH power cells come pre-charged and only lose 20 to 30 percent charge after a year in storage. They do have lower capacities than regular NiMH rechargeable cells but their lower self-discharge rate makes them last longer.

Can C Batteries Replace D Cells?
No. While they look alike, C and D batteries have different dimensions. D cells are wider and taller. This means that the gaps between the electrical connectors of devices that take D batteries are too wide for C cells.

Is It Safe to Mix C Batteries From Different Manufacturers?
Yes, as long as the batteries all have the same voltage. It also helps if they have the same capacity or different capacities with small differences. Only combine batteries that use the same cell chemistry and never mix rechargeable and non-rechargeable C batteries.

Do Alkaline and NiMH C Batteries Deliver the Same Voltage?
No. A disposable alkaline battery puts out 1.5 volts while a rechargeable NiMH cell delivers 1.2 volts. Some electronic devices can handle both voltages with no impact on performance. Those designed for 1.5-volt batteries may deplete 1.2-volt cells faster. The small difference in voltage between the two types of size C batteries has little to no effect on devices that require up to 3 batteries.
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Heavy-Duty Zinc Carbon Batteries (C; 2 pk)
Item : 2579393
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  • Zinc carbon formula
  • Best used before date on battery
  • 2 pk
5.89 $5.89
Each
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Duracell C Batteries
Item : SS1024435
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  • Duracell CopperTop Alkaline batteries are designed for use in everyday devices
  • Individually Date Coded to ensure freshness
  • Long Lasting, reliable power
As low as 9.99 $9.99
Multiple options available
Duracell® Quantum Alkaline C Batteries
Item : SS3279726
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  • C Batteries
  • Our longest lasting alkaline battery
  • Hi-density core with 100% more power boosting technology
As low as 9.49 $9.49
Multiple options available
Tripp Lite 2U UPS Replacement Battery Cartridge 48VDC for Select SmartPro UPS Systems (RBC49-DV)
Item : IM1TL7675
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  • Maintenance free
  • Pre-assembled and wired battery kit offers simple installation
  • Rugged leakproof construction
207.49 $207.49
4/Pack