There are many types of rechargeable light-emitting diode (LED) candles available. They provide a safe alternative to traditional candles, while also being able to incorporate some innovative designs that would be impossible with actual flame candles. Some candles incorporate into the body of the unit a rechargeable battery that is removed when it needs to be charged. Other types of rechargeable LED candles have conductors on the base of the candle so the entire piece can be plugged into a socket or charging base. One of the convenient aspects of using rechargeable LED candles is that an LED light requires very little electricity to operate, meaning less time is necessary for charging and more time is available for illuminating.
Some of the most popular types of rechargeable LED candles are votives. These are usually small, flat cylinders with a faux flame or LED light in the center of the top. When they are placed inside a larger container or candle holder, they tend to emulate the light from an actual votive candle very well. Most of the rechargeable LED candles of this type are designed to sit on top of a base to recharge and usually contain a very small lithium ion (L-ION), nickel cadmium (NiCAD) or nickel metal hydride (NiMh) battery inside.
Larger types of rechargeable LED candles can be produced to look like a tall, tapered candle or a thick decorative candle. The LED light can be enclosed inside the unit, where it shines through translucent walls to give the effect of a real flame burning in a wax candle. These units can incorporate full-sized rechargeable batteries inside that are removed and recharged in a separate unit plugged into a wall socket. Alternately, the units can have an actual charging mechanism inside that can be attached to a cord so it charges directly from a socket.
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One variety of rechargeable LED candles that is especially popular for holiday events includes those designed to look as if they are contained in a candle holder or other base. Often known as windowsill candles, these sometimes have a convenient recharging mechanism that relies on solar power. A small solar panel is build into the base of the candle, where it charges the battery as it sits in a window during the day. A small light sensor may activate the candle automatically once it gets dark. These candles also can be attached to a small solar panel mounted elsewhere so they can charge even when the sun is not directly hitting them.