Powering Arduino With a Battery

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About: I'm a Research Engineer at Adobe. Previously, I was a grad student at the Center for Bits and Atoms at MIT Media Lab. Before that, I worked at Instructables, writing code for the website and iOS apps and m...

Intro: Powering Arduino With a Battery

Make your Arduino projects portable by using a battery for power. From the Uno and Mega documentation pages:

"The board can operate on an external supply of 6 to 20 volts. If supplied with less than 7V, however, the 5V pin may supply less than five volts and the board may be unstable. If using more than 12V, the voltage regulator may overheat and damage the board. The recommended range is 7 to 12 volts."

I've found that using 9V works well. You can simply connect the + end of your battery to Arduino Vin and the - end to Arduino ground (fig 1). You should see the green light on the Arduino turn on to indicate that it is powered.

It's also a good idea to attach a toggle switch in series with this battery so that you can turn your Arduino off and on. As shown in the images above, solder a toggle switch to the red lead from the 9V battery connector. Connect the black lead from the battery connector to one of the Arduino's ground pins, and connect the lead from the toggle switch to Arduino's Vin pin. Snap a battery to the connector. Now your Arduino will turn on when the switch is closed and turn off when it is open (figs 5 and 6).

Parts List:

(1x) Arduino Uno Amazon

(1x) 9V Battery Amazon

(1x) 9V Battery snap connector Amazon

(1x) toggle switch Amazon (this one is a little different that that pictured, but it will work the same)

Alternatively, you can find these 9V snap connectors with the same n-tye barrel plug as the Arduino and plug into the barrel socket on the Arduino directly:

(1x) 9V battery snap connector to barrel plug Amazon

7 People Made This Project!

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65 Discussions

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dimitrakis1992

1 year ago

Hello sir.I have a question.When Arduino is off draw current?Please answer.Thank you

1 reply
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sampoulton2004dimitrakis1992

Reply 4 months ago

If you use a switch like on here, then the circuit will become physically disconnected when turned off, so no it won't.

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GeorgeB133

11 months ago

Worked for me with a 4 AA battery pack

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oconnell3

1 year ago

So you program your arduino using a computer and then disconnect and run that program off of a battery? correct? I am assuming you can only run one program then ? To switch to another program you would have to start over with a computer?

1 reply
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VishalK123oconnell3

Reply 1 year ago

Yes that has to be necessary, as new code has to be loaded using the loader

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allanflanco

1 year ago

i want to use a Lipo battery for my RC car project,what should i do and dont?

1 reply
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Shikashik

1 year ago

mine works only if connected.why is it so?

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BhavikK2

1 year ago

i am using 12v 8000mah battery for robowars

can i connect it directly to arduino?

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NumairK

2 years ago

How shall i make it work

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Jon-MichaelC

2 years ago

If this was a rocker with an led where would you wire the led in

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JonhD82

2 years ago

Looks like that is turning into a real product: https://bitbucket.org/talk2/whisper-node-avr/overview

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ArifSae

2 years ago

The chip is rated at max 5.5V, I dont know if the Vin passes through regulator. are you about this?

1 reply
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ArifSaeArifSae

Reply 2 years ago

ok so googling says

If you use the VIN pin, you bypass the diode, but you still have the dropout voltage of the regulator,

But regulator will eat your battery

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guzforster

2 years ago

Do you know for how long the Arduino will operate if we never turn off the supply?

1 reply
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AlanK30

2 years ago

I found out the hard way that this is not a good way to power an arduino! Read this article:

http://cybergibbons.com/uncategorized/arduino-misc...

I bought a whole bunch of rechargeable 9V batteries thinking it would be a good system. They generally can't power the my nano for more than a day. The article above describes why.

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askfriends

2 years ago

can i use external 5v 6A power supply to power the arduino?

i bought this power supply for my ws2812b led strip which works on 5v.

will it burn the arduino, will it be safe?