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AA vs AAA Batteries: What’s the Difference?

Many of us had been in the situation that we were in a store and we needed some batteries, but we couldn`t remember which ones. That usually happens when we don`t know the difference between them. There are differences between them, and I will cover the two most common battery types.

So, which one should I buy, you ask me. Both of these batteries have their purpose, and that is what makes them different. AA batteries are larger, they last longer, and are used in bigger equipment that requires batteries with more juice. Also, AA batteries come with an option of recharge, while AAA batteries are generally for single use.

Yes, the difference is plain and simple, but there are more! You will learn why we use batteries as we do, why we need the exact type, and I will answer some of the interesting questions about them from which you will get interesting information.

Difference between AA battery and AAA battery

What do AA and AAA stand for? Those are not abbreviations of any kind but just a way to differentiate them. The main difference between them is in their size. Appliances tend to require only one type of battery, so you need to check which one do you need.

Usually, robust electronic devices are using the AA battery, because they can last longer than their AAA counterparts. Larger electronic toys are almost always using AA batteries, just as MP3 players, and other devices that are higher consumers.

AAA batteries are used in some remotes, clocks, and electronic torches. For devices that are rarely used the manufacturer in most cases is using the AAA battery.

I just mentioned the battery capacity, and it is one of the major differences between them. AA battery can store up from 600 to 2500 mAh, while AAA battery can typically provide between 400 and 1200 mAh. Why does the capacity vary so much? It all depends on the chemical composition of the battery.


Manufacturers pay much attention to the purpose of a portable device when they are designing it. They need to anticipate how the device will be used, how much power it will drain, and what capacity of the batteries needs to be for the device to be functional.

It would be ignorant to place AAA batteries into a device that would drain them in a matter of days. In those cases, they are using AA batteries.

There is also an option of alkaline batteries that provide that extra capacity and longevity in use. They tend to have a double or even triple price of the regular battery, but their capacity is greatly extended.

A great thing about these batteries is that they can hold onto their capacity for longer, and if you live some device unused for some time, it wouldn`t shorten the battery life that much.

Both AA and AAA batteries can be used in the same devices because they have the same output voltage that ranges between 1.2 and 1.5 volts, and that is why you can look at them as the same batteries, just with different capacities.

But why is there two types of so similar batteries? Another thing that separates them is their use. AA batteries are often used as heavy-duty batteries, while AAA batteries are considered as light-duty batteries.

AA battery AAA battery
Capacity 600 to 2800 mAh 400 to 1200 mAh
Voltage 1.2 – 1.5 Volt 1.2 – 1.5 Volt
Price High Usually higher than the AA
Used for Big toys, MP3 players, clocks Electronic torches, smaller clocks, remotes

FAQ About Batteries

Q: Which battery is used in a wall clock?

It is all depending on the manufacturer. In the past, AA batteries were almost exclusively used for clocks, but today that is not the case. You can find clocks with either AA or AAA batteries, and it all depends on the choice that the manufacturer made.

Q: Are AA and AAA batteries with the same voltage?

Yes they are. They both have a 1.2 to a 1.5-volt range. That is why we can use both of the batteries in most appliances and devices. If they had different voltages, that would mean that, for example, one remote is completely different than the other. This way we are using the same current for similar devices, and the only difference is in the capacity and size of the battery.

Q: Can I use an AA battery instead of an AAA?

In theory, you can, but you would need a converter. They have the same voltage, so there would not be a problem, but you would need to reconnect the casing of an AA battery with the original AAA slot. If you want more capacity that can be useful, but it is best to use the product as it was intended by the manufacturer.


Today I covered one I can say, sciences topic in a way that everyone can understand it. Knowing what batteries are the best for what device can be important when buying a portable device.

You should check what batteries it is using, and because you know how you would use that device, you should choose between a product with an AA or an AAA battery.

That will add ease of use because you will not need to run to the store all the time to buy new batteries. That is very useful for everyday life and I hope that this article helped you to learn something new interestingly. Keep an eye for my blog, because I will continue to write about different interesting topics in the future!

James Smith

James is a passionate explorer and the creative mind behind, a platform dedicated to unraveling captivating distinctions. With an insatiable curiosity, he uncovers hidden nuances in various aspects of life, from cultural traditions to scientific phenomena. James believes that appreciating differences fosters personal growth and societal empathy.