Electronic – just connect two CR2032 batteries in parallel

batteriesparallel

I'm designing a device with a small current draw that will mostly sleep in a very low power mode and I need to use button cell batteries due to a limited thickness. I would like to double time between batteries needed to be replaced by using two or more CR2032 batteries connected in parallel, can I just connect them in parallel directly or do I need additional circuitry to prevent charging or discharging one battery from others while the device is sleeping?

Best Answer

If this is for mass production, then no, you cannot do this. It is never recommended to parallel primary (non-rechargeable) batteries. The reason is that if a charged one is connected to a discharged one, the current will flow into the discharged one, and charging primary cells is a big safety no-no.

If you can devise a circuit method to prevent charging of the cells under all circumstances, then you can do it. (For example, maybe you can accept the voltage drop of a Schottky diode). But otherwise, use a higher capacity button cell. There are many varieties out there.

If you are just goofing around at home, then by all means go ahead. But you should make a point of removing both batteries before you replace them. You might consider adding a resistor in series with each battery to limit the equalization current, just in case you accidentally put a fresh one in parallel with an old one.