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How to Be Somebody's Hero by Giving the Gift of Hearing

by rayovac1, December 2016

An elderly couple is fitted with hearing aids by Starkey and Rayovac Starkey Hearing Foundation and Rayovac are committed to helping people everywhere hear the vivid world they live in. We strive to empower every person who needs help — whether they are a young girl who hears her mom say, “I love you,” for the first time, a teenager who is getting a better education, a parent who can acquire a better job, or a grandparent who can regale their loved ones with wisdom from their adventures. And now you can join us. You too can be someone’s hero and give the gift of hearing.

This holiday season we’re making changing a life easier than swapping a light bulb.

Here’s how you can help.

Right now you can gift people around the world the ability to hear by purchasing specially-marked Rayovac hearing aid battery packages. For every purchase, Rayovac will donate $0.25 to the Starkey Hearing Foundation.

Rayovac and Starkey have a long history of working together to help people hear and better connect with their loved ones. We’re excited to continue this effort through the Give the Gift of Hearing campaign.

Starkey partners with audiologists and local communities, domestically and internationally, to provide hearing aids and supplies to people who can't afford them. The effects of this work are widespread and transformative among people in the communities they help.  

“We hear often from people who we provide hearing aids to that before [our help] they were living in a world of isolation,” says Keith Beise, a digital media associate for the Starkey Hearing Foundation.

But after working on a hearing aid expedition in Mexico, Beise learned the help Starkey and Rayovac give quickly ends the isolation and replaces it with communication, comfort and love.

“It was my very first day that I'd ever been fitting hearing aids, and I'm helping this older gentleman while his wife is standing there next to me,” Beise recalls. “I was fitting him with the hearing aid he needed, and as I'm fitting him his wife turns to me and says (through a translator), ‘I'm so excited for my husband to hear me say 'I love him' again.’”

He says that moment really drove home how important hearing is, and how disconnected from loved ones some individuals can become without it.  

“As I turned on his hearing aid, ‘I love you’ is the first thing she said to him,” he says. “It was a really cool moment. So if you ask, ‘what does this really change in a life?’ It's a lot.”

Beise’s experiences are common among people who help Starkey on these aid missions.

He says that when a person does not hear well they tend to shy away from audible conversations. Some people are worried that they are going to be looked down upon for their hearing loss, or that people are frustrated with them because communication is a challenge. So they tend to live much more isolated lives.   Suddenly, being able to hear breaks this isolation for people and it can present incredible opportunities to enrich their lives. In 2013, Starkey studied the consequences of their help with students in Africa.

They gave hearing aids to 40 hearing-impaired students and discovered those students—who were performing in the lowest percentile of their classes—began outperforming the students who were in the highest percentile.

As for adults, Beise says Starkey gets reports from people who are able to get jobs or get better jobs because they're now able to hear.

Life is comprised of creating and sharing moments, dreams and goals with other people. Although your role in this campaign may seem small in scale, its effect is enormous. Like the old tale of a man walking the seashore before dawn and throwing starfish back into the sea, your help monumental to the affected people.

So, are you ready to change a life?

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Don't Miss these Black Friday Deals

by rayovac23, November 2016

While you’re gift shopping to help make a perfect holiday for your family and friends, don’t forget to snag some long-lasting Rayovac batteries to power those toys and tools. Several Rayovac products, from batteries to flashlights, are on sale during Black Friday at your favorite big-box stores and on our website. 

 

If you’re tackling Black Friday sales from your couch, then find our products at the links below:

Walmart

Lowe's

Best Buy

Game Stop

 

And if you’re braving the stores and Black Friday crowds, then grab in-store sales at:

 

The Home Depot

True Value Hardware 

Batteries Plus

 

Blains Farm & Flee

Mills Fleet Farm

And many more!

 

We at Rayovac wish you, your family and your friends a safe, happy holiday season. And remember, when your kids’ toys have to work on Christmas morning, Rayovac batteries are a sure thing! 

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The 6 Best, Most Versatile Rayovac Lights for Hiking

by rayovac28, October 2016

Flashlights and lanterns for hikingHiking during the fall offers some of the most breathtaking scenery and wildlife encounters. The fall season also means the sun sets earlier, and the cold evening air seeps in faster. So it’s always a good idea to bring a reliable light source with you when you’re off hiking or camping. That way if you’re ever out in the dark, you can find your way back to the trailhead before the cold becomes too bitter.  But what type of light do you bring?

Headlamps

Headlamps are the go-to option for solo hikers, climbers or campers. Really, anybody who needs a reliable light source while their hands stay free can find a headlamp useful.  Headlamps are offered with various lumens, light patterns and light beam distances. The downsides to headlamps are the lights generally are weaker than a handheld flashlight, and it’s easy to momentarily blind anybody you’re speaking with. Here are two of our favorite headlamps for hiking:

LED 1 Watt 3AA 6 Light Modes Headlight

If you’re using a headlamp for your hike, then this small headlamp is an excellent option. Some might even say it’s essential for nighttime adventures. It’s small enough to fit snug in your pocket, but powerful enough to cut through the darkness with six different modes: three light intensities, a strobe light, a rear red light, and a rear strobe red light. The three AAA batteries the headlamp uses can power the device for up to 16 hours on maximum lumens (105), 30 hours for optimum lumens (48) or 55 hours for economy-setting lumens (26).

Virtually Indestructible High Power 3AAA LED Headlight

On the other hand, if you need something more rugged and straightforward than our six-setting headlamp, then look no further than the virtually indestructible option. It’s made with high-performance LEDs, custom optics and has two modes: a180 lumen setting that illuminates 136 meters ahead of you and lasts for five hours, and a battery saver mode that drops the lumen output to 50 and the distance to 114 meters, but bumps up the battery longevity to 17 hours. These ultra durable headlamps also go through a 30-foot drop test, have a shatterproof lens and they are IPX4 water resistant. For anybody who has a lot of difficult rock scrambles in their hiking routine, then this option is an excellent fit.

Flashlights

Flashlights are the classic option to light up your hike, and they come in plenty of sizes and brightness levels to meet whatever requirements you have. The only downsides of flashlights are you have to actually hold them somehow (we’re including your mouth and arms here, too), and they’re bulky and a bit heavy. Otherwise, a good flashlight will last you a lifetime and light up any dark space.

The BEAST 2000 Flashlight

Our go-to flashlight to scare away the dark is called The Beast. This 2,000 lumen, dual-LED flashlight shines brighter than a car headlight when it’s on high, and still provides a respectable 200 lumens on the energy saving setting. We equipped The Beast with a frosted lens that improves its spotlight function. Plus the durable aluminum housing is going to hold up against nearly whatever rough adventures your evening hike can bring.

Virtually Indestructible LED 2D Outdoor Flashlight

Just in case you don’t need something strong enough to light up an entire football field like The Beast, we also have a high-performance LED flashlight that brings a powerful 320 lumens (75  in energy saving mode) that brightens an area up to 302 meters away (148 in energy saving mode).  The battery life on this flashlight is stupendous, and it’s excellent for longer hikes or extended weekend trips. The flashlight lasts 16 hours on its high setting and 160 hours on the energy saver mode.  Plus the aluminum-titanium alloy body can easily withstand our 30-foot drop test, and a shatter-proof lens alongside the ANSI FL1 water resistance means this virtually indestructible flashlight is going to handle whatever gets thrown at it.

Lanterns

Lanterns are an excellent option for larger hiking groups who don’t want to blind each other with errant shines of a headlamp or flashlight. They work particularly well for picnic hikes, fishing adventures or any outdoor event where you’ll be standing still for a while.

Rayovac Sportsman 3-D Outdoor Lantern

When you need a wide area lit up around you, even the darkest areas are conquered by this powerful lantern from the Rayovac Indestructible series. Some might call our Sportsman lantern the undisputed king of durable lanterns, and we agree. We’ve designed the lantern with multiple resilient features, various light output levels, a compact design and impact resistant internal engineering. If you’re looking for a rough-and-tough lantern that keeps shining when the darkness creeps closer, then your search stops here.

LED 4 Watt 3D 305 Lumen Area Lantern

On the other hand, if you’re just hiking close to camp, then our SD 305 lumen lamp will satisfy all of lighting needs. We think of this as the perfect camping lantern, but it works well for group hikes, too. It’s water-resistant and has a sturdy handle and resilient casing that holds up to bumps, scrapes and falls. The three lighting modes allow you to customize the amount of light you need and the battery life you want.

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6 Important Halloween Safety Tips for Parents and Kids

by rayovac17, October 2016

Halloween safety tips with Rayovac Power Protect

Halloween is the best holiday as a kid. Alright, maybe—just maybe—yuletide celebrations outdo dressing up as someone else and getting a tooth-rotting pile of candy. But that’s just because those holidays come with presents. Halloween lets us explore our imaginations, our fears and our sweet tooth. Despite how much fun Halloween can be, it also has the potential to be hazardous. It’s celebrating monsters and the underworld after all! So here are a few tips to keep your family safe during this frightful adventure.

Costume Advice

Make costumes with bright, vibrant colors

Brainstorming Halloween costume ideas is the best. It is fun listing out the monsters, demons and ghouls, and then figuring out the necessary supplies, time, dedication and crafting abilities (or lack thereof). But there is one common theme among the classic Halloween costumes: using black and other dark colors. The dark colors in kids’ costumes can make them difficult to see at night. On moonless trick-or-treat outings the kids are practically camouflaged by creepy shadows, which can give you quite the fright when they vanish before your eyes and even more of a scare when the oncoming cars can’t see them either. To keep your kids (and your heart) safe, be sure to incorporate some type of bright and reflective color into their costumes. Maybe your vampire needs a bright red scarf, and reflective red stripes on their cloak? Perhaps your tiny, cackling witch clutching at your hand should have a hat and cloak adorned with bright orange glow-in-the-dark patterns? Whatever your solution might involve, ensure it is bright and reflective. If your child doesn’t have a costume accessory that is easily modified with some reflective tape, then consider adding some reflective tape to their trick-or-treat bags, giving them a glow in the dark necklace, or a handy flashlight with long-lasting batteries instead.

Like normal clothes, costumes should fit well

Sometimes we create the coolest costume idea, but the clothes we find to pull it off are too big. Perhaps the cloak is too loose, and your child can slip out of their shoes without even trying. This can easily become a dangerous situation if your child gets caught on a fence, entangled, or trips. Make sure they are comfortable!

Being able to see is important

Let’s face it, masks are pretty cool. Your kids can literally turn into anything with a mask. But masks are also hot, itchy and limit visibility. If you’re trick-or-treating in an area that has heavy traffic or other hard to see dangers, then consider designing their costume with non-toxic makeup and decorative hats as safer alternatives. As with any type of makeup, it should be tested on a small patch of skin to check for allergic reactions and color.

Frankenstein says it best,” Fire, bad.”

Fire is a cornerstone decoration in Halloween. When you’re shopping for costume supplies, especially store-bought costumes, wigs and accessories, double check that the materials are adorned clearly with a label saying they are flame resistant. When you are decorating your own home for Halloween switch out traditional candles for battery powered ones or even a small flashlight to light your pumpkins and luminaries. Review with children how to call 9-1-1 (or their local emergency number) if they ever have an emergency or become lost.

Trick-or-treat advice

A light in the darkness

We go trick-or-treating in the dark for a reason: it’s spookier that way! But, it’s harder to see the potential dangers lurking around every corner. But those dangers can actually exist outside of our minds, too. It’s really important to have a light source, and a strong one at that. (No, your phone doesn’t count.) We advise you carry a heavy-duty flashlight or wear a headlamp. You can get smaller flashlights, too, for your kids to explore what candy they get. Don’t forget to equip the lights with a fresh set of batteries.

A monster at your side

Halloween can—and in some cases should—be scary. But sometimes kids can get too scared. Some children handle being scared well and others panic and begin to run away. Stay at your kid’s side during the entire evening; don’t let them go wandering too far lest they disappear or get nervous and lose sight of you. Also designate what houses are okay for them to visit. The rule of thumb is to visit homes with the porch light on. This is particularly important for older kids who are off trick-or-treating by themselves. Review where your older children are going to go during their Halloween escapades, and then give them a curfew of when you expect them to be home. In case your kids do go out alone or they sneakily slip out of your sight, consider getting them a portable safety alarm, like the Rayovac Power Protect. The device is a small phone charger that doubles as an emergency alarm by pulling a pin. We hope you and your family have a fun, safe Halloween! The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) and Safe Kids provided recommendations for this story.

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17 Awesome Family Activities You Should Do This Fall

by rayovac29, September 2016

Fall is finally upon us, and now we can start fully enjoying all of the wonderful activities autumn offers. If you’re looking for some fun family events and ideas to do this fall, then our list below will help!

Outdoor Fall Activities for Families

Camping

Early fall is the best time for camping. The leaves change colors, different animals migrate to the area and it’s the perfect temperature for campfires. Nothing tastes better than campfire-roasted fall foods. Sweet potatoes, corn and even s'mores!  Make sure you have a portable lantern and a powerful flashlight for night hikes and curling up in your sleeping bag with a good book. Rayovac’s friend, Tim, has more advice to make your family’s camping adventures fantastic.

Trick-or-Treating

Hands down, trick-or-treating is the best event in October. Halloween is so much fun, and getting to dress up as somebody (or something) else for a day can be a blast. Designing and creating costumes, and then slipping into the cool evening air and exploring the neighborhood among the other goblins and ghouls is equally spooky and delightful. Plus there is the month-long supply of candy, too. Be sure to visit the blog again in October for Rayovac’s Trick-or-Treating Safety Tips.

Scenic Hikes to Watch the Leaves Change

If you live in an area that experiences autumn colors, then going for a hike can be one of the most breathtaking weekend excursions. Hiking in the fall serves as excellent exercise, and doing a summer hike in the fall can look completely different with foliage changes.

Bird Watching & Wildlife Spotting

Fall signifies the season when many animals are out and about, whether they’re migrating or simply enjoying the cooler weather. Depending on where you live, a quick jaunt into the woods, mountains or fields with a good pair of binoculars can let you spot plenty of animals you couldn’t see during any other time of the year.

Pumpkin Patches and Corn Mazes

Is there anything more quintessentially fall than pumpkins and corn mazes? If your family hasn’t visited a farm to track down the perfect pumpkin (to carve or cook) or get lost in towering stalks of corn, then this is a activity is a must!

Outdoor Science Experiments

Science can get messy, and that’s why doing science experiments outside works so well. The ground soaks up any spills, and running these experiments outside helps connect you and your kids to the natural world they’re exploring. Science-Sparks has a fun list of 20 outdoor experiments for kids. And here are two of our favorite experiments: building a tomato battery and making a homemade flashlight.  

Go to a Haunted House

Another one of the best things about the Halloween season, barely edged by scary movies, are haunted houses. If your kids are old enough, then taking them to a haunted house can be one of the best experiences they’ll have all Halloween. The whole family will scream, cry and laugh, scrunch your noses and yell ewww, and feel relieved to escape the horrors.

Indoor Fall Activities for Families

Mason Jar Hot Cocoa

Nothing says fall more than a delicious cup of cocoa with friends and family. Have the kids join in on the fun by creating mason jars full of hot cocoa ingredients to hand out or to keep at home. Get super fancy and top off the powders with mini marshmallows and cocoa shavings.

Paper Bag Jack O’Lanterns

Want to decorate the house for Halloween, entertain the kids and stay on budget? These paper bag jack o’lanterns are the best option. Using lunch sacks and tea light candles around the house, kids can color away and make the house festive!

Bake & Decorate Cookies

What would the holidays be without coming home to the delicious aroma of cookies? Cookie baking and decorating is a great way to bond with the children and create memories to look back on. And with it being the holiday season, stores will be stocked with fun cookie cutter shapes or pre-made doughs. Increase the fun factor by purchasing food coloring and vanilla frosting so the kids can create fun designs on their cookies.

Treasure Hunt

Want to have a few minutes to yourself without the kids getting in your hair? Hide some items around the house, draw a map and tell them to get hunting. Provide a prize for the winner. Perhaps something like no chores that week.

Movie Marathon Night

You made hot cocoa and cookies and decorated the house for Halloween. Now put it all to use with a scary movie marathon night. Let each kid choose a movie, and make it a fun event for the whole family. Sometimes relaxing on the couch is exactly what the family needs.

Tape Art

Take crayons and watercolor paints to the next level by adding tape to the mix. Try something simple to begin with: cut a shape or letter into a piece of painter’s tape, apply the tape to a piece of construction paper, and then let your kids color or paint all over the page. Once the paint’s dry, peel the tape away and enjoy the blank white shapes.

Homemade Ninja Warrior Course (jump over pillows, crawl under tables, push-ups, etc.)

If your kids haven’t watched Ninja Warrior on TV, pull up YouTube and watch their fascination grow. Then get to work. Create an obstacle course for the kids and time how quickly they can get through it. Think of hopping over pillows, crawling under tables and dropping for 20 push-ups. Talk about getting the kids ready for naptime.

Kleenex Box Guitar

Got a musical genius on your hands? Or an artist at heart? Combine arts and crafts and music for an afternoon well spent. Click the tutorial above to learn how to make a guitar with an old Kleenex box, a few rubber bands and a paper towel tube. This best part is this DIY arts and craft project will last, and the kids can play with it again the next day or week.  

DIY Glowing Bouncy Balls

Like the Kleenex box guitar, this is another DIY project that can be kept and used later on. The glowing bouncy balls are perfect for a weekend at home with nothing to do, but remember to buy the ingredients in advance. There aren’t too many items needed, but borax probably isn’t sitting in an average person’s pantry.

Paper Airplane Hoops  

Cut a few circles of varying sizes into a cardboard poster and have your kids fly their paper airplanes through them. The tutorial above shows a poster with a point scale – more points earned for smaller holes and fewer points earned for larger holes. This activity will keep the kids occupied for hours!

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The Best Way to Make a Homemade Flashlight

by rayovac26, September 2016

Make a homemade flashlight with Rayovac batteries School is back in session, and alongside all of the homework and new best friends is the greatest class of all: science. Science class is where we learn to expand our minds to universal possibilities while performing some cool experiments. As a bonus, your child’s science schoolwork often presents opportunities for family bonding and creativity. So let’s invigorate your science-loving family with an easy, at-home science project for your kids. And what’s more fun than building your own flashlight with common household materials, and then telling spooky Halloween stories afterward? Making a homemade flashlight is a fun, simple science experiment for kids that teaches them how a conductive material like copper carries an electrical charge to a small lightbulb. Although this flashlight won’t be robust like a Rayovac flashlight, they can last for a while, especially if you use sturdy construction materials. Much like the tomato battery we showed how to make as a summer science project, this experiment demonstrates how electricity from a battery flows through conductive materials to provide power to everyday objects. Once your child understands how an electrical connection and circuit work, they’ll never see the world the same.

make-a-flashlight-27

Materials needed to make a homemade flashlight

  • A sturdy cardboard tube. (Small poster tubes, paper towel tubes, even toilet paper roll tubes can work)
  • A piece of copper wire that is at least 5” long.
  • Two Rayovac D-cell batteries
  • Electrical tape
  • A 2.2 volt or 3 volt flashlight lightbulb. (The bulbs from Christmas lights can work well, too)
  • Small piece of black cloth
  • Paper cup

How to make a homemade flashlight

Step one in making a homemade flashlight Step 1: After you gather the materials, you’ll need to tape the one end of the copper wire to the negative end of one of the batteries. Don’t be afraid to use a decent amount of tape to ensure the wire is flush and snug against the negatively charged end of the battery. Making a homemade flashlight for kids Step 2: After the wire is securely fastened, tape the black cloth to the bottom of your sturdy tube. Hold the covered end up to a light source and peer into the tube; double check that no light sneaks its way through the cloth and into the tube. If you do see any light, add a layer of tape around the spot. Any light that makes it into the device dilutes its ability to output light. If you don’t have a cloth, then you can just tape the end of the tube. Step three in building a homemade battery Step 3: Insert the battery you’ve taped—wired end first—into the tube. Finagle the wire around in the tube until the non-taped end is sticking out of the tube. In case the wire isn’t long enough to stick out of the tube, you’ll either need a longer wire or a shorter tube. Step 4: Insert the next battery —negative side first—into the tube. The battery should rest flush against the one below it. This allows electricity to pass between the two batteries, from a cycle of electrons flowing from the positive connector to the negative. A homemade flashlight experiment for kids Step 5: Tape the bulb to the top of the battery, touching the exposed positive node. You’ll need to keep a small amount of the bulb’s metal base exposed for the last step, but do make sure the bulb is securely fastened to the battery and has the maximum amount of metal-to-metal surface area contact. make-a-flashlight-17 Step 6: Cut out a small hole in the paper cup, fit it over the lightbulb and tape it to the tubing. make-a-flashlight-11 Step 7: Finally the payoff; now you get to light up your flashlight. Take the end of the wire poking out of the tube and touch the exposed part of the bulb. This connects the battery circuit and gives the bulb power. It should light up immediately after the bulb base and copper wire touch. If you want to keep the bulb lit, gently wrap the wire around the bulb base. To turn the flashlight off all you have to do is move the copper wire away from the bulb. A homemade flashlight experiment That’s it, you’re done! Now it’s time to gather the family around your new light, turn out the others and tell some spooky stories. Just in time for Halloween. Have you heard the grim tale about a man named Tim who chose the wrong batteries? It’s one of our favorites. Watch it here.

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