Guide to Common Battery Sizes (with Size Chart)

Battery Sizes

Batteries, almost quite literally, make the work go round. Without them, you’d have to get up and change the channel on your TV, and your computer’s time and date would be messed up every time you booted it up. But what sizes do batteries come in?

Batteries come in all different shapes and sizes. In order from smallest to largest in terms of physical size, the most common 1.5-volt batteries sizes are AAA, AAA, AA, C, and D. Per Battery Council International Standards, battery groups range in size from 9.4 × 5.1 × 8.8 inches to 13 × 6.8 × 9.4 inches.

Apart from the physical size of a battery, have you ever wondered what a battery’s specifications—e.g., voltage, amp-hours, Li-Ion, etc.—mean? If so, I invite you to continue reading since I’ll describe a battery’s specifications and much more in the following sections.

Battery Types and Sizes

Battery Types and Sizes

Batteries come in various shapes and sizes. However, before discussing the physical size and classes of a battery, it’s important that we familiarize ourselves with the various types of batteries.

Battery Types

In a general sense, we can split batteries into two categories—household and specialty batteries.

Household Batteries

A household battery is a battery that is used to power various household items, including but not limited to neon signs, remote controls, and touchless soap dispensers. The most common household battery sizes are, from smallest to largest, AAAA, AAA, AA, C, and D, as well as a series of button cells. 9V batteries are also a common household battery size used almost exclusively for powering smoke detectors.

This type of battery usually has a power of up to 9 volts—usually between 1.2 and 1.5 volts—and has an amp-hour rating of between 2 and 3 (2,000 and 3,000 mAh) at 3.9 watt-hours. Household batteries are cylindrical or rectangular cuboid in shape.

Specialty Batteries

Specialty batteries are considerably larger than household batteries. They are typically rectangular cuboid in shape and are used for heavy-duty applications, including powering lawn mowers, vehicles (such as 12v batteries), and cordless power tools.

The Battery Council International Standards (BCI), similar to the IEC, has standardized battery sizes into different groups, so batteries of identical sizes can be used interchangeably in the same products.

This type of rechargeable battery can deliver up to and beyond 48 volts and 3 amp-hours at 220 watt-hours.

Battery Sizes

The IEC (International Electrotechnical Commission) has set in place various standard codes that encourage battery manufacturers to produce similar battery types at identical dimensions.

Below, I’ll provide a size chart that briefly describes the physical dimensions of household batteries and specialty batteries.

Battery Size Shape Length Width Height
AAAA Cylindrical 8 mm

0.31 in.

8 mm

0.31 in.

42 mm

1.65 in.

AAA Cylindrical 10.5 mm

0.41 in.

10.5 mm

0.41 in.

44.5 mm

1.75 in.

AA Cylindrical 14.2 mm

0.56 in.

14.2 mm

0.56 in.

50 mm

1.97 in.

C Cylindrical 26 mm

1.02 in

26 mm

1.02 mm

46 mm

1.81 in.

D Cylindrical 33 mm

1.30 in.

33 mm

1.30 in.

58 mm

2.28 in.

9V Rectangular 26.5 mm

1.04 in.

17.5 mm

0.69 in.

48.5 mm

1.91 in.

CR123 Cylindrical 17 mm

0.67 in.

17 mm

0.67 in.

34.5 mm

1.36 in.

CR2 Cylindrical 16 mm

0.63 in.

16 mm

0.63 in.

27.5 mm

1.08 in.

N Cylindrical 12 mm

0.47 in.

12 mm

0.47 in.

30.2 mm

1.19 in.

J Rectangular 36.5 mm

1.44 in.

9.18 mm

0.36 in.

48.5 mm

1.91 in.

Group 24 Rectangular 260 mm

10.23 in

173 mm

6.81 in.

225 mm

8.86 in.

Group 27 Rectangular 306 mm

12.04 in.

173 mm

6.81 in.

225 mm

8.86 in.

Group 31 Rectangular 330 mm

12.99 in.

173 mm

6.81 in.

240 mm

9.45 in.

Group 34 Rectangular 260 mm

10.24 in.

173 mm

6.81 in.

200 mm

7.87 in.

Group 35 Rectangular 230 mm

9.06 in.

175 mm

6.89 in.

225 mm

8.86 in.

Group 51 Rectangular 238 mm

9.37 in.

129 mm

5.08 in.

223 mm

8.78 in.

Group 65 Rectangular 306 mm

12.05 in.

190 mm

7.48 in.

192 mm

7.56 in.

Group 78 Rectangular 260 mm

10.24 in.

179 mm

7.05 in.

196 mm

7.72 in.

Battery Specifications

Battery Specifications

Apart from the physical size of a battery, what other specs should we be aware of?

Voltage

For all intents and purposes, the “voltage” rating on a battery refers to how “strong” it is. A higher voltage rating means that the battery is equipped to handle more power-demanding tasks. That is why you’ll find cordless power tools with 14.4V batteries and higher.

Amp-Hours

Amp-hours measure a battery’s capacity. A typical household battery can supply up to 3 amps of current per hour. To determine how often you will need to switch the batteries in a household electronic, take its amp rating and divide it by the battery’s amp-hour figure.

Cell Type

There are four main battery cell types—button, cylindrical, polymer, and prismatic.

Cylinder batteries are arguably the most widely used type of battery out there. Inside a cylindrical battery are multiple cells that provide power to household electronics.

A button or coin cell battery is typically used to provide backup power to electronics, such as the battery found on a motherboard. However, it can also be the primary battery for products like wristwatches and car key fobs.

Prismatic cell batteries are the types of batteries found in old cell phones. They are shaped like flat rectangles, but they have become less popular due to the high manufacturing costs and swelling potential. Polymer batteries look and function much like prismatic batteries but do not come with an exterior case.

Battery Chemistries

There are three main types of battery chemistries—Li-Ion, NiCad, and NiMH.

Li-Ion (lithium-ion) batteries are the most popular of the 3. They are known for packing tremendous amounts of energy, making them ideal for household electronics, portable devices, and vehicles. However, they are also known for their safety concerns.

NiCad (nickel cadmium) batteries are the most robust of the 3. They work well in extreme hot and cold environments and usually last much longer than the other battery chemistry types. The major problem with NiCad batteries in memory—i.e., it cannot get fully charged after each use.

NiMH (nickel metal hydride) batteries are in the middle ground in terms of capacity, despite weighing almost twice as much as NiCad batteries. While they are somewhat stable in extreme conditions, they suffer from a “weak cell” problem, in which the battery may be fully charged but immediately run out of power when inserted into an electronic.

BaronCooke

Baron Cooke has been writing and editing for 7 years. He grew up with an aptitude for geometry, statistics, and dimensions. He has a BA in construction management and also has studied civil infrastructure, engineering, and measurements. He is the head writer of measuringknowhow.com

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