CR1220 Battery Equivalents and Replacements
CR1220 battery is a very popular non-rechargeable lithium 3.0V button/coin cell battery, commonly used in keychain LED flashlights, thermometers, key-less remotes, medical scales, PDAs, heart rate monitors, cameras, and other electronic equipment.
CR1220 batteries are much more common than BR1220 batteries - they share the same physical dimensions, but they differ in chemistry and thus have different characteristics in terms of battery capacity, voltage, operating temperature, self-discharge rate, etc.
Published: January 15, 2021.
CR1220 Batteries Features and Specifications
CR1220 and BR1220 batteries feature the same physical dimensions of (D x H) 12.5 x 2.0 mm (~0.4921 x 0.07874 inches).
While CR1220 and BR1220 are the most common labels for lithium 3.0 volts non-rechargeable button/coin cell batteries, other labels are used as well, including ECR1220, DL1220, VR1220, 5012LC, etc.
These are all button/coin 12.5 x 2.0 mm cells, that may differ in chemistry and thus their discharge characteristics.
BR1220 and CR1220 batteries feature negative electrode made of lithium, while the positive electrode is either manganese-dioxide or carbon-monofluoride.
Manganese-dioxide lithium battery labels start with 'C' and generally their operating temperature range is between -20°C (-4°F) and 70°C (158°F). The nominal voltage is 3.0 V, and the cutoff voltage is 2.0 V.
A typical example is a CR1220 battery, with a typical capacity of ~35-40 mAh, a standard discharge current of ~0.05 - 0.1 mA, and a maximum continuous discharge current of 1 mA.
Note: Actual capacity, of course, depends on the discharge current, discharge temperature, age of the battery, number of pulses per day, and similar.
The typical shelf life of the CR1220 battery depends on its self-discharge rate and varies generally between 4-7 years, although there are models with a shelf-life of up to 10 years - the best CR1220 batteries feature an annual discharge rate at room temperature ~1%.
Carbon-monofluoride lithium battery labels start with 'B', hence the label BR1220. Operating temperature of BR1220 batteries is usually in -30°C (-22°F) and 85°C (185°F) range. The nominal voltage is 3.0 V, with a cutoff voltage of 2.0 V - very similar to the CR1220 battery. However, 'older' BR1220 batteries have a nominal voltage of 2.8 volts and a cutoff voltage of ~2.25 volts - regardless of the exact battery chemistry, BR1220 batteries have a more stable output voltage when compared with CR1220 batteries.
The typical capacity of the BR1220 battery is ~35 mAh. But, the standard discharge current is lower than the standard discharge current of CR1220 batteries and is ~0.03, with the maximum allowed continuous discharge current of 0.1 (if allowed!).
But, BR1220 batteries feature a typical annual discharge rate of <1% (even less than that), thus having a shelf life of 10+ years, which may be very important for devices requiring reliable memory backup battery.
In most situations BR1220 and CR1220 batteries are interchangeable.
For example, both batteries can be used for low-drain applications at room temperature, but for high-drain applications (for example, keyless LED flashlights, remote controls, and similar) CR1220 batteries are far better choices. On the other hand, for applications in extreme temperatures, BR1220 batteries are a better choice.
Also, as motherboard batteries, BR1220 batteries are a better choice since they have a lower self-discharge rate (<1% annually). However, there are also CR1220 batteries that feature a self-discharge rate as low as 1% per year - in that case, go for either BR1220 or a high-quality CR1220 battery - these are the batteries that cost few dollars/euros at most, and there is really no point in saving few (euro)cents for the battery that is going to be used, perhaps, even for a decade.
Similarly, for watches that lack LED lights and audio alarms, BR1220 batteries may offer extra-long runtime (time between battery replacements) - again, high-quality CR1220 batteries can compare with BR1220 batteries in terms of shelf-life, but not in terms of operating temperature.
BR1220 and CR1220 Batteries Crossreference Chart
The following comparison chart lists some of the most popular BR1220 and CR1220 batteries with their most important features and specifications (batteries are given in the alphabetic order):
|Battery||Nominal Voltage||Cut-Off Voltage||Nominal Capacity||Operating Temperature||Self-Discharge Rate||Standard Discharge Current||Other||Datasheet|
|Energizer CR1220||3.0 Volts||2.0 Volts||37 mAh
(45 kΩ, @21°C, down to 2.0V)
|-30°C to +70°C||~1% per year||0.046 mA||2.8 mA @2.8V 1kΩ 2 sec Pulse||Energizer CR1220|
|Maxell CR1220||3.0 Volts||2.0 Volts||36 mAh||-20°C to +85°C||-||0.1 mA||-||Maxell CR1220|
|Panasonic BR1220||3.0 Volts||~2.25 Volts||35 mAh||-30°C to +85°C||-||0.03 mA||-||Panasonic BR1220|
|Panasonic CR1220||3.0 Volts||2.0 Volts||35 mAh
(30 kΩ, @20°C, down to 2.0V)
|-30°C to +85°C||-||0.095 mA||-||Panasonic CR1220|
|Renata CR1220||3.0 Volts||2.0 Volts||35 mAh||-30°C to +70°C||~1% per year||0.1 mA||1.0 mA Max Continuous||Renata CR1220|
|Varta CR1220||3.0 Volts||2.0 Volts||
|-20°C to +70°C||-||-||-||Varta CR1220|
Lithium 3.0 volts non-rechargeable CR1220 batteries are very popular batteries manufactured by almost all most reputable battery brands, making these batteries rather easy to find, if not in the local hardware and office stores, then at online shops/stores.
BR1220 and CR1220 Safety Issues
BR1220 and CR1220 batteries come in so-called 'pets-safe' and 'kids-safe' packages, because like all similar small and shiny objects (other button/coin cell batteries included), BR1220 and CR1220 batteries can be swallowed by kids and pets, and that can be very dangerous.
Although these batteries don't contain lead, cadmium, mercury, and other toxic heavy metals and similar pollutants, they are very dangerous when swallowed - they can cause chemical burns and physical damage to internal organs.
If these batteries (or any similar batteries) are swallowed, immediately contact the nearest emergency center (or doctor), explain what happened, and act according to their instructions.
CR1216 Batteries vs CR1220 Batteries vs CR1225 Batteries
CR1216, CR1220, and CR1225 batteries are very similar batteries, with the main difference being is size and thus their features and performances:
- BR1216/CR1216 batteries feature physical dimensions of 12.5 x 1.6 mm, the smallest capacity (~25 mAh), and the drain currents very similar to the BR1220/CR1220 batteries.
- BR1220/CR1220 batteries feature physical dimensions of 12.5 x 2.0 mm, smaller capacity (35-40 mAh), and somewhat lower drain currents than the BR1225/CR1225 batteries.
- BR1225/CR1225 batteries feature physical dimensions of 12.5 x 2.5, larger capacity (~50 mAh), and somewhat stronger discharge currents than the BR1220/CR1220 batteries.
Some battery compartments intended for BR1220/CR1220 batteries may accept larger BR1225/CR1225 batteries and/or smaller BR1216/CR1216 batteries, just be sure not to physically damage the device.
For example, some credit card size devices can get warped and change the shape (and malfunction) due to the very small difference in height of just 0.5 mm (that is ~0.02 inches!) between BR1220/CR1220 and BR1225/CR1225 batteries, while 0.4 mm difference between the height of BR1220/CR1220 and BR1216/CR1216 batteries can cause contact issues and unreliable operation.
For short, don't replace BR1220/CR1220 batteries with the similarly sized button/coin cell batteries.
Long Story Short: BR1220 and CR1220 are very popular 12.5 x 2.0 mm lithium, non-rechargeable, 3.0 volts batteries. They can be found easily, just be sure to order the batteries from the reputable brands that have many positive reviews - their batteries have already been tested in real-life situations by countless users.
In high-drain applications like keychain flashlights, car remote keys, remote controllers and similar, CR1220 batteries are a much better choice than BR1220 batteries because of the high-drain currents.
When buying these or any other battery, be sure to order according to your own needs and requirements.
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