Electronic Cigarette Industry Trade Association
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This chapter, together with CHAPTER 8, considers the implications of the various regulations which apply to suppliers of batteries and electronic/electrical equipment.
According to the legal definition,
“‘producer’ means any person in the United Kingdom that, irrespective of the selling technique used, including by means of distance communication as defined in Directive 97/7/EC of the European Parliament and of the Council on the protection of consumers in respect of distance contracts (d), places batteries, including those incorporated into appliances or vehicles, on the market for the first time in the United Kingdom on a professional basis;”
The Batteries and Accumulators (Placing on the Market) Regulations (BMR)
The BMR apply to all ecig batteries, (separate and integral) that are used in electronic cigarette products, since they are classed as portable batteries (as opposed to fixed installations, such as alarm systems). You are required under the BMR to make certain declarations, as follows:
• declare the weight of batteries sold per calendar year (commencing January 1st). Please note, where batteries are incorporated into a device, i.e. integral electronic cigarette batteries, only the weight of the battery itself is relevant. Your suppliers/manufacturers should be able to give you details of the weight of the batteries which are incorporated into the devices you sell; and
• indicate the classification of the chemistry type of the battery (Lead-Acid, Nickel-Cadmium, or other, both Li-Ion and Li-Polymer are classified as ‘other’).
• The BMR prohibits selling batteries which contain more than 0.0005% mercury or 0.002% cadmium.
There are exceptions to this but none that would apply to electronic cigarettes.
As part of a due diligence defence, it is worth noting that specific tests are mentioned when relying on information received from others:
“(4) A person shall not be entitled to rely on the defence provided by paragraph (1) by reason of that person’s reliance on information supplied by another, unless it is shown that it was reasonable in all the circumstances for that person to have relied on the information, having regard in particular to—
(a) the steps which that person took and those which might reasonably have been taken, for the purpose of verifying the information; and
(b) whether that person had any reason to disbelieve the information.”
Although batteries are exempt from RoHS (as they are covered under this BMR legislation) credible RoHS certification will ensure that the batteries are indeed free from mercury and cadmium, and will provide the basis for a strong due diligence defence in the event of any problem.
The BMR set of regulations is complemented by the WBR (see CHAPTER 8).
MilliAmp hours (mAh) is important because it's the easiest way to distinguish the capacity of a battery. The higher the mAh, the longer the battery will last between charges. Batteries with different mAh ratings are interchangeable, provided that they have the same physical size, or connector.
A milliAmp hour is 1/1000th of an Amp Hour, so 1000mAh = 1.0Ah.
Think of a car’s petrol tank. Voltage is how much petrol is being used, and mAh is the size of the petrol tank. The bigger the petrol tank (mAh) rating the longer the device will run. If your battery is rechargeable, then think of the petrol tank as refillable (rechargeable).
It is important to never fully tighten the battery into the USB charger; simply screw in till the light comes on. The majority of battery related accidents are due to over tightening of the charger. (Please also see also our blog posts: Important things to know about battery safety, Battery venting and mod design, and Battery venting and mod design 2
Routine testing of ECITA members’ batteries and chargers is included as part of ECITA membership, but this testing can also be offered to non-members. Please contact us for details.
Battery Marking Requirements
A full checklist of the battery marking requirements is supplied to all our members.
ECITA Battery Testing protocol
We are able to offer battery and charger testing to non-members. We can also offer testing for mechanical mods, to ensure that there is sufficient venting in the event of the battery going into thermal runaway. Please contact us for details.
(See ANNEX XIV for the full protocol.)
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