Melly,

We won't pretend that we can answer the question "Which sonic toothbrush has the longest battery lifespan?"
Answering that would be on par with what the labs at Consumer Reports investigate. We don't have those resources.

If you're concerned about the issue of premature battery failure you might:

1) Keep you receipt and understand the conditions of your warranty. There's no reason to let these issues interfer with your receiving the full backing offered by your manufacturer (no matter how limited).

2) Buy a rechargeable toothbrush brand that offers replaceable batteries. The problem here is we don't know of any.

You'd have to assume that a leading cause of battery failure is moisture entering the body of the brush. Manufacturers combat that likelihood by designing a handle that's tightly sealed, at the expense of offering entry into it for battery replacement.

3) Consider buying a toothbrush that uses off-the-shelf batteries. The problem here is that the brushing action offered by these types of brushes typically isn't as powerful/effective as those featured by rechargeable models.

4) Replace your dead battery. We see ebay websites that offer to replace the batteries in both Sonicare and other brands of toothbrushes. We also find YouTube videos that explain how to do this yourself.

5) If your "old" Sonicare was an Essence, buy another one. We don't know for certain if this older-technology brush is manufactured exactly like it was some years ago but we don't get the impression that many changes have gone into it (it still features the old-style NiMH battery).

And yes, with these suggestions we agree that none of them are astoundingly great alternatives or options.

As far as prolonging battery life:

1) NiMH batteries - This older-style battery design suffers from "memory effect." This is the situation where a battery gradually looses its ability to charge fully due to repeated cycles of being recharged after being only partially discharged. (So use this type of brush until each charge has significantly worn down, then recharge it.)

2) Lithium Ion batteries - Conditions for these batteries are best when operated in the middle (neither fully charged or discharged). Fully discharging is especially hard on them. However, keeping a lithium ion fully charged over extended periods of time (like on its charger around the clock) isn't ideal either.

3) And as mentioned above, moisture entry into the brush's handle is likely a significant cause of failure. So minimizing the brush's exposure to that (to the point of even removing the brush head and drying the body off after use) is probably a best practice.

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