Lithium CR2032, DL2032, BR2032, ML2032, LiR2032, LR2032 Batteries - Equivalents and Replacements
Lithium CR2032 is a very popular non-rechargeable lithium 3.0 V battery, often used in watches, calculators, medical equipment, remote controls, and other smaller electronic devices. Due to its very long shelf life (5-10+ years) and stable voltage, it is often used as a memory battery in computers, servers, cameras, and other high-end electronic devices.
Thanks to its high demand and many manufacturers that offer these batteries, there is slight confusion regarding CR2032 battery equivalents and replacements.
No wonder, since one can find batteries labeled as CR2032, DL2032, BR2032, ML2032, LiR2032, LR2032, E-CR2032, SB-T51, 5004LC, etc.
But, these batteries feature the very same dimensions but also different chemistries, resulting in different discharge characteristics.
Updated: June 19, 2023.
According to the standard, the CR2032 battery is 20 mm in diameter and 3.2 mm in height - hence the '2032' part of the name. On average, these batteries weigh around 2.5 and 3.0 grams, with the typical CR2032 weighing around 2.9 grams.
Nominal voltage, cut-off voltage, capacity, operating, and storage temperature ranges, recommended and maximum drain currents, and other features depend on the exact chemistry of these batteries.
CR2032 Battery Features and Specifications
CR2032 battery is based on Lithium Manganese Dioxide (LiMn02) chemistry. The positive electrode is manganese dioxide, and the negative electrode is lithium.
The nominal voltage of the CR2032 battery is 3.0 V, and the cutoff voltage is 2.0 V, with a typical capacity in the 210-230 mAh range.
CR2032 operating temperature range is generally between -20°C (-4°F) and +70°C (158°F) - with the advances in chemistry and metallurgy, the operating temperature range of some newer models is even broader.
CR2032 battery's typical maximum discharge current is ~3 mA with a maximum pulse discharge current of ~15 mA.
Although the nominal voltage of the CR2032 battery is 3.0 V, it quickly drops to 2.7-2.8 volts in real-life applications. The self-discharge rate is very low (sometimes even <1% annually), and the CR2032 battery is often used for nonvolatile computer BIOS memory and real-time clock (RTC) backup batteries.
CR2032 batteries from reputable brands feature a shelf-life of up to 7-10 years. Some of the most popular CR2032 batteries include (Amazon links, the links open in the new windows):
- Energizer CR2032 Lithium 3.0V Battery
- Duracell CR2032 Lithium 3.0V Battery
- Panasonic CR2032 Lithium 3.0V Battery
- Tenergy CR2032 Lithium 3.0V Battery
Note: Many manufacturers simply print on the battery label all the types that their battery replaces, somewhat increasing the confusion but often helping the users find the battery they need.
BR2032 Battery vs. CR2032 Battery
BR2032 battery is based on Lithium Carbon Monofluoride chemistry. The positive electrode is carbon monofluoride, and the negative electrode is lithium.
The nominal voltage of the BR2032 battery is ~2.8 V, and a cutoff voltage is ~2.25 V, with a typical capacity in the 180-190 mAh range.
However, newer BR2032 batteries often feature a nominal voltage of 3.0 volts and a cutoff voltage of 2.0 volts.
BR2032 operating temperature range is between -30°C (-22°F) and +85°C (185°F), although there are models that feature operating temperature range from -40°C (-40°F) to +125°C (257°F) - and that is a lot.
Although a typical voltage of 2.8 V is somewhat smaller than CR2032's 3.0 V, in real-life applications, it drops to 2.6 - 2.7 V, which is just slightly lower than CR2032's 2.7-2.8 V.
Newer BR2032 features nominal voltage during low-drain applications very similar to the voltage of CR2032 batteries. Also, the actual voltage during low-drain use over several years is even more stable than the voltage of CR2032 batteries.
BR2032 doesn't tolerate high discharge currents as well as CR2032 chemistry. It is not the best choice for applications that periodically require relatively large currents, like key-chain flashlights, remote devices, watches with alarms and LED lights, and similar.
But, for applications that require constant voltage over a longer period of time and over a broad range of temperatures, BR2032 is a better choice than the CR2032 battery.
ML2032 Battery vs. CR2032 Battery
ML2032 battery is Maxell's rechargeable Manganese Dioxide Lithium with 3.0 V nominal voltage. It is used in certain electronic devices like solar charging Logitech K750 wireless keyboard and similar.
ML2032 batteries are also manufactured by other brands as well.
ML2032 batteries are generally recharged by the device where they are used - if they are recharged with the battery charger, the battery charger must be intended for these batteries, or they may be overcharged, often leading to overheating and even fire/explosion.
LiR2032/LR2032 Battery vs. CR2032 Battery
LiR2032 or LR2032 battery is rechargeable lithium 3.6-3.7 V battery. Just like any other standard 2032 battery, it is 20 mm in diameter and 3.2 mm in height.
LiR2032 battery nominal voltage is 3.6-3.7 V, but it also depends on the exact chemistry (lithium cobalt oxide, lithium manganese oxide, lithium iron phosphate, lithium nickel cobalt aluminum oxide, etc.) and varies from 3.2 to 3.7, with some chemistries even having a nominal voltage of 3.9 volts.
The nominal cut-off voltage is 2.6 V, but it varies from 2.0 to 3.0 V. Maximum charging voltage also differs, and it is in the 3.65 to 4.3 volts range.
Note: Common LiR2032 battery is a 3.6-3.7 V battery, with a typical capacity in 35-50 mAh range. Their capacity is obviously lower than CR2032's average 220 mAh capacity, but LiR2032 batteries can be recharged 500+ times.
Modern LiR2032 batteries feature a relatively low self-discharge rate when compared with NiCd and NiMH batteries, but still, their discharge rate is much higher than the self-discharge rate of CR2032 and especially BR2032 batteries.
LiR2032 batteries require special battery chargers, which are often powered via a USB cable and are capable of charging other similar lithium-ion batteries.
LiR2032 batteries are a very cost-effective solution for watches, medical devices, and other electronic devices that use 2032 batteries that tolerate 0.6V nominal voltage difference and that drain the batteries quickly enough that the use of rechargeable batteries makes sense.
On the other hand, LiR2032 batteries should not be used for computer BIOS memory and similar applications where constant, uninterrupted voltage is required for years - in such situations, consider a good CR2032 or BR2032 battery.
ECR2032, DL2032, VCR2032 Batteries vs. CR2032 Battery
ECR2032, DL2032, VCR2032, and other similar batteries are often just 'standard' CR2032 batteries but have customized labels by their manufacturers.
For example, ECR2032 is Energizer's CR2032 battery, DL2032 is Duracell's CR2032 battery, etc.
So, if You wonder what the difference between DL2032 and CR2032 batteries is, the difference is in the label.
For short, ECR2032, DL2032, VCR2032, and similar batteries may be used to replace the typical CR2032 batteries.
Also, a high-quality CR2032 battery from other brands may be used to replace ECR2032, DL2032, VCR2032, and similar batteries.
CR2032, BR2032, ML2032, LiR2032 Cross Reference Chart
The following cross-reference chart lists some of the most popular '2032' batteries and their most important features and specifications:
|Annual Self-Discharge Rate||Continuous Drain Current
265mAh, down to 2.0 volts, 15kΩ, @20°C
|<1% @20°C||0.3mA, max pulse 50mA 1s
235mAh, down to 2.0 volts, 15kΩ, @21°C
220mAh, down to 2.0 volts, 15kΩ, @20°C
240mAh, down to 2.0 volts, 15kΩ, @20°C
200mAh, down to 2.0 volts, 5.6kΩ, @20°C
220mAh, down to 2.0 volts, 15kΩ, @23°C
|-||8 mA, 70mA Max.
230mAh, down to 2.0 volts, 5.6kΩ, @20°C
Of course, there are other brands on the market that manufacture reliable and durable CR2032 and other '2032' batteries as well.
CR2032 Battery Flashlights
CR2032 batteries are very often used as energy sources for ultralight and very compact keychain flashlights that can be used years after having their battery replaced.
In such flashlights, a "classic" CR2032 battery is the best solution - BR2032 batteries have a longer shelf-life and broader temperature range, but they are not so good in providing relatively strong currents.
Similarly, LiR2032 batteries are able to provide the required currents, but due to their self-discharge rate, they must be recharged periodically every few months.
So, if You are looking for a new battery for your CR2032 battery flashlight, go for a non-rechargeable CR2032 battery that has a shelf life of 5+ years.
CR2032 Battery Safety Issues
Modern CR2032 batteries don't contain mercury, cadmium, and similar toxic metals, but nonetheless, when they are discharged, they should be recycled properly.
Also, CR2032 batteries are small, shiny objects that can attract kids and pets - although they are not the smallest button/coin cells on the marketplace, they can get swallowed.
That is why CR2032 and similar batteries are packaged in 'kids' safe packages.
But, if they get swallowed, they can cause chemical burns caused by electrolysis, which can be very dangerous, even deadly.
If CR2032 or any other similar battery gets swallowed, immediately contact the nearest emergency center, explain to them what happened, and act according to their instructions... This is a serious warning!
For Short: If you need a 2032 button/coin cell battery, regardless of its label (CR2032, DL2032, BR2032, ML2032, LiR2032, LR2032, E-CR2032, SB-T51, 5004LC, etc.) consider the following:
- CR2032: 3.0 V nominal voltage, good drain currents, long shelf life, ~220 mAh capacity,
- BR2032: 2.8-3.0 V nominal voltage, low drain currents, extra-long shelf life, broad operating temperature range, ~190 mAh capacity,
- LiR2032: 3.6 V nominal voltage, rechargeable, good drain currents, relatively high self-discharge rate, ~50-70 mAh capacity.
If you need a non-rechargeable 2032 battery and you are not sure which one to take, consider the CR2032 battery from reputable brands with good reviews, and you will do just fine.
For the most up-to-date offers and prices, feel free to check the CR2032 Battery Amazon link (the link opens in the new window).