CR2032 and CR2025 are popular coin cell batteries. Both have identical names and are used in similar applications and devices such as watches, toys, etc. This is the reason behind using them interchangeably. But can you really replace one with the other and is it safe? Are CR2032 and CR2025 equivalent?
Short answer- Yes you can replace CR2032 with CR2025 and vice-versa as they have the same voltage, chemistry, and diameter. But there are several factors you will have to consider before actually interchanging them. Some of them are listed below:
- Battery Capacity
- Device/ Project with multiple Cells in series
The table given below highlights the main differences and similarities between CR2025 and CR2032
|Capacity||235 mAh||170 mAh|
|Diameter||20 mm||20 mm|
|Nominal voltage||3 V||3 V|
|Operating temperature||-30℃ to 60℃||-30℃ to 60℃|
|Max. Discharge Current||0.2 mA||0.2 mA|
Dimensions- CR2025 VS CR2032
Dimensions of CR2032 and CR2025 are different! Though they have similar diameters, their thickness is not the same. CR2032 is 20 mm wide and 3.2 mm in height whereas CR2025 is 20 mm wide and 2.5 mm in height. That’s why you will have to make a slight adjustment in the battery holder if you want to use CR2025 in place of CR2032.
Take an aluminum foil, fold it and place it over CR2025 in order to fill that extra space of 0.7 mm.
Note: CR2032 will fit perfectly in the battery holder for CR2025. So no mechanical adjustment is required in this case.
The capacity of CR2032 is slightly more than that of CR2025. CR2032 capacity is 235 mAh whereas CR2025 is rated at 170 mAh max. So, if you have an application where you can’t compromise the battery’s running life, use CR2032 only. If capacity is not your concern simply replace CR2032 with CR2025 without a second thought.
Note: More capacity means CR2032 will run longer than CR2025 for the same application.
Due to the difference in thickness, their weights are slightly different. CR2032 weighs 3 g whereas the weight of CR2025 is 2.6 g. So unless you have a project or application where weight is a constraint, CR2025 can be replaced with CR2032. Replacing CR2032 with CR2025, as far as the weight is concerned, will make the device lightweight which is a good thing.
Can you connect CR2032 and CR2025 in Series?
Some projects require multiple cells in series(for higher voltage). If all the batteries are identical i.e, have the same capacity or Ah rating and C-rating, there is no issue. But with time one of the batteries may run out of energy and you will have to replace it. Suppose that battery is CR2032.
There are 3 ways you can proceed
- Replace all the batteries with new ones, either CR2032 or CR2025.
- Replace the depleted CR2032 with a new CR2032.
- Replace the depleted CR2032 with a new CR2025.
Replacing all cells will cause no problems. As explained above, using the CR032 pack will last longer than the CR2025 pack.
You should never in any circumstance replace a single cell. For example, suppose you placed a new CR2032 or CR2025. The whole battery pack will appear dead, maybe not instantly but very soon.
Reason? The capacity of this new cell is much higher than the used-up cells(not fully depleted) connected in series. This also creates a huge difference in voltage between the new one and the old one. So, the new CR2032 is able to supply the current to the device but the other cells cannot. And since all are connected in series, there is no current flow.
Similarly, replacing all cells except the one that has some juice left may cause the whole battery pack to appear dead.
This is also the reason you should never use batteries with different capacities in series.
Similarities between CR2025 and CR2032
Chemistry– CR2025 and CR2032 are similar in their names itself. From the previous articles, we are aware that the battery names follow the nomenclature as per the 60086-3 standard of the International Electrotechnical Commission (IEC). According to IEC, C stands for lithium manganese dioxide chemistry. Hence both are lithium batteries. The similarity in performance of these batteries is due to the fact that both of them use the same chemistry.
Shape– The second letter in their name, ‘R’ denotes that the shape of the batteries is round. Hence both batteries are round coin cells.
Diameter– As per IEC, the first two digits stand for the diameter. Since the first two digits of CR2025 and CR2032 batteries are ‘20’, we can infer that their diameter is 20mm.
Non-rechargeable– Since both batteries follow lithium-manganese dioxide technology, they are counted as rechargeable batteries. But it is wrong. Both CR2025 and CR2032 are non-rechargeable batteries. Once they drain out, we should dispose and use another one.
Nominal Voltage– The average nominal voltage of both CR2025 and CR2032 batteries is 3V. Since the latter one is a little larger in size and has a better capacity, CR2032 is capable to provide a nominal voltage of up to 3.7V.
Usage– Due to the close similarity in dimension and performance, their applications are also very similar. Both batteries are used in compact and tiny devices. The common applications of CR2025 and CR2032 batteries are motherboards to security system panels, Car key fobs, Watches, Toys, LED lights, Sporting goods, Stopwatches, hearing aids, POS systems, Digital thermometers, etc.
Operating Temperature– Both CR2025 and CR2032 can function in the temperature range of -30℃ to 60℃. Thus both batteries offer a good range of operating temperatures.