To help us provide you with free impartial advice, we may earn a commission if you buy through links on our site. Learn more

Best CR3032 battery 2023: Get maximum power from your little coin cells

Keep your key fobs, calculators and wearables running longer with the best of the CR2032 Lithium coin cells

Sure, they don’t get as much attention as your classic AA or AAA batteries, but the humble CR2032 has become a crucial part of our technology fabric. You’ll find the little coin cells in everything from car keyfobs to LED tea lights and torches, calculators to bike lights, and a wide range of security and wearable devices. Why? Because they’re roughly the size of a 10p piece, deliver a constant 3V output and last for ages, especially in devices that aren’t active for long periods of time.

Like all good things, though, they regularly need replacing, and it makes sense to get the longest-lasting, most reliable CR2032 batteries you can find. We’ve tested a selection from all the major manufacturers, along with some smaller brands, to help you make the right choice.

READ NEXT: The best power bank

Best CR2032 batteries: At a glance

How to choose the best CR2032 batteries for you

Basically, you want a battery you can trust that’s going to go the distance – and you want it at an affordable price. You can find some CR2032 batteries in incredibly cheap deals, not to mention massive multipacks at rock-bottom prices. All the same, we reckon it’s worth sticking to a decent brand from a reputable source. In many applications, a CR2032 battery should last you months or even years of use and you don’t want one that unexpectedly runs out of juice too soon.

While there are differences in the internal construction and the Lithium chemistry, the main differences come in the stated shelf life, or how long you can store the battery before it starts losing charge, as well as the packaging and safety features. CR2032 batteries are nearly always sold in blister packs, but some make it easier to get to the cells than others, while others have coatings to make them less palatable to any small children who might be tempted to swallow them. Apparently, this is a thing that happens, maybe because they look a bit like sci-fi smarties. If it does, the batteries can react with fluids in the foodpipe to cause serious damage to the chest and windpipe. For this reason, it’s best to keep them out of harm’s way.

READ NEXT: The best rechargeable batteries to buy

How we test CR2032 batteries

We get the batteries in their standard packaging and install two in a clip-on LED booklight. We run this constantly for nine hours then remove the batteries and measure their voltage to check for any loss. We then do the same after an additional three hours. This simulates one of the more energy-intensive applications for CR2032 batteries, but should provide a good indication of long-term performance in other devices.

Read next: The best AA and AAA batteries

The best CR2032 batteries you can buy in 2023

1. Varta CR2032: The best CR2032 batteries for consistent power

Price: £1.94 (1 pack), £5.45 (5 pack) | Buy now from Amazon

Varta’s CR2032 batteries don’t come cheap, but their chemistry seems especially robust. Even after nine hours in our LED booklight, the voltage remained at an average 2.99V, and it was only once we’d kept our test pair running for a further three hours that it dipped to 2.75V. While the Panasonics had a higher voltage at the end of the full 12 hours, the Varta cells did a better job of maintaining their nominal 3V voltage over the first nine hour stretch.

They’re a bit too pricey to recommend for devices like a car keyfob, where they’re not in action all the time, but they’re great for wearables and high-drain lights where you want top performance for as long as possible.

Key specs – Chemistry: Lithium; Stated voltage: 3V; Shelf-life: 10 years; Features: Child-resistant blister pack

2. AmazonBasics CR2032: Good, basic value cells

Price: £4.36 (6 pack) | Buy now from Amazon

We’ve come to expect good value from the AmazonBasics battery range, and its CR2032 button cells are relatively cheap. They come packaged in a child-safe blister pack. Even when cutting where marked with a pair of sharp scissors this took some getting into. Once installed in your device they’re reasonable performers.

After nine hours in the booklight the voltage had dropped to an average 2.93V, falling to just 2.04V after the full 12 hours, with the voltage of one battery having plummeted to 1.36V. As a result, you’ll probably want to change these sooner than you would if you had bought the Panasonic or Energizer button cells. This is a problem, given that those batteries can be found slightly cheaper, but if you find these in a deal then they’re worth a spin.

Key specs – Chemistry: Lithium; Stated voltage: 3V; Shelf-life: 8 years; Features: Child-resistant blister pack

3. GP CR2032: The best bulk buy CR2032

Price: £2.99 (10 pack), £10 (30 pack), £10 (40 pack) | Buy now from Amazon

If you go through a lot of CR2032 batteries, perhaps in LED flashlights or electronic projects, then you might want to buy them in bulk. If so, look no further than GP’s cheap and cheerful bundles. You can have 10 batteries for less than most manufacturers will sell you four, or 30 for around a tenner. Unsurprisingly, they’re not quite as long lasting as rival button cells; even by the nine hour mark our test cells were down to an average 2.91V. By 12 hours that had dropped to just 2.07V, with the LED in our reading light visibly dimmer.

Still, that’s hardly disastrous, and in low drain devices it should be less of an issue. The shelf life is lower than with other cells and we found the individual ‘blisters’ in the packaging a pain to open. Otherwise, a solid bulk buy choice.

Key specs – Chemistry: Lithium; Stated voltage: 3V; Shelf-life: 8 years; Features: Child-resistant blister pack

4. Duracell DL2032: The best button cells for safety features

Price: £2.29 (2 pack), £4.25 (4 pack), £13.29 (8 pack) | Buy now from Amazon

Duracell’s batteries often come with a small price premium, and you’ll spend as much or more on four of these DL2032 cells as you would on six batteries from the competition. Given that, the actual performance in our tests was slightly disappointing. While the voltage after nine hours was high at 2.96V, it had fallen down to 2.28V by the 12 hour mark – below the Varta, Panasonic and Energizer cells.

However, there is one aspect where Duracell leads: the child-safety features. The child-resistant blister pack is impossible to open without a penknife or a pair of scissors, but easy once suitably equipped, while the button cells themselves are coated with Bitrex – a non-toxic, bitter substance with an unforgettably obnoxious taste. There’s even a sticker over the negative terminal as a safeguard. If you’re worried about your batteries getting into the wrong hands – or mouths – then these are as child-safe (and pet-safe) as they come.

Key specs – Chemistry: Lithium; Stated voltage: 3V; Shelf-life: 10 years; Features: Child-resistant blister pack, Bitrex taste layer

5. Panasonic CR2032: The best all-round CR2032 batteries

Price: £2.60 (6 pack) | Buy now from Amazon

You can nearly always find Panasonic’s CR2032 batteries at a decent price, often in packs of four or more, and they’re consistently good value. You’ll need some sharp scissors to snip around the blisters in the child-safe packaging, but they have a shelf-life of up to ten years and a little more stamina when used in high-drain devices than the other budget options.

In our LED booklight, they could still deliver a respectable 2.95V output after the initial nine hours of testing, and 2.94V even after the full 12, putting them ahead of every other battery, including those from Duracell and Varta. Punching well about their price point, these are the batteries to buy.

Key specs – Chemistry: Lithium; Stated voltage: 3V; Shelf-life: 10 years; Features: Child-safe packaging

6. Energizer 2032 Lithium: Great inexpensive button cells

Price: £3.17 (6 pack) | Buy now from Amazon

The Energizer 2032 button cells have three things going for them. First, they’re a little cheaper than the Duracell or Varta options, especially if you shop around online. Second, the child-safe blister pack that Energizer uses is one of the easiest to get into, without being so easy that your average toddler has a chance of breaking through.

Third, and most important, these are batteries with staying power. At the nine hour mark they were level with the Duracells, still putting out 2.96V, but by 12 hours they were slightly ahead, at 2.41V. They don’t quite have the consistent output of the Varta cells and fall just behind the Panasonics, while the shelf life is eight years rather than ten. However, if you can’t get your hands on the Panasonic CR2032s, the Energizers are a great second choice.

Key specs – Chemistry: Lithium; Stated voltage: 3V; Shelf-life: 8 years; Features: Child-resistant packaging

Read more

Best Buys