Price (RRP): $119.95
Manufacturer: Digital Works
ReZAP wants to let people know that you can recharge single-use Alkaline batteries – AAA, AA, C, D, 6V and 9V as many as 15 times. No, it is not a con!
ReZAP is the brainchild of Managing Director Wilson Lee who started Digital Works in Melbourne in 1991. He has a bachelor’s degree in Electrical, Electronic and Computing Engineering. He released the predecessor LazerCharge in 1998 that proved you could recharge up to four Alkaline batteries at once for about 1 cent in power costs.
I have used a ReZAP Battery Doctor (model RBC883) since not long after its release in 2003 – 17 years ago. It is as good as the day I bought it and has recharged thousands of batteries without fuss.
Why did I buy a ReZAP way back then?
Well, at the time, we had kids in the nest. That means multiple TV remote controllers, torches, bicycle lamps, Dolphin Lanterns, battery operated salt and pepper mills, clocks, transistor radios/Walkman, smoke alarms, cameras, toys, mice, and many more items. We were probably spending $10-20 a month on batteries.
AA and AAA ‘Energizer’ Alkaline batteries cost over $1 apiece, 6V lantern batteries $13 and 9V over $10 each. Sure, you could buy cheaper ‘house’ brands or you could get rechargeable nickel-metal hydride batteries for about $5 each plus a charger for $20 or more. Batteries were a constant drain on the budget.
Recharge, reuse, recycle
Since then I could count on one hand the number of times we have bought new batteries. For two reasons!
First, you can safely recharge an Alkaline battery about 15 times using ReZAP’s patented AlkalineMax technology. The only time you may not get that many is if the battery starts leaking – and believe me that happens to the best brands as much as the cheapest low-cost ones!
Second, perhaps it is my somewhat Scottish nature, but I started collecting used batteries from friends and office colleagues. I had an unlimited supply of batteries paid for by others!
And the ReZAP Pro will also recharge NiCad (Nickle-Cadmium) and NiMH (Nickel-Metal Hydride) up to 1000 times, RAM (Rechargeable Alkaline Manganese) and Titanium batteries.
It does not do Lithium coin and camera style batteries currently, but there are plans for an add on module.
The original ReZAP battery Doctor (RBC883) costs $79.95. That is equivalent to recharging about 80 AA/AAA batteries and an awful lot less if you count 6V lantern and 9V fire-alarm batteries. I estimate I saved the purchase price in well under a year!
The new ReZAP Pro (RBC889) costs $119.95, and it quite a lot more things. That is what we are reviewing.
Catch – none
ReZAP uses a slow pulse charge system – it can take from four-to-sixteen hours, but that is gentler on the battery. An LCD readout tell you when its charging and finished.
When you insert a battery, the ReZAP computer analyses the cell to find its type.
If it is Alkaline (Zinc-Manganese Dioxide Zn/MnO2), then the AlkalineMax technology kicks in. If it is rechargeable, then it slow charges to avoid overcharging and prolongs the life of the battery.