By Erik Watkins

CR2016 vs. CR2032 Battery Difference: Interchangeable Or Not?

Last updated: Apr 11, 2023
cr2016 vs cr2032 battery

Some people confuse the CR2032 battery vs. CR2016 because they have so much in common. The question is: are they interchangeable? 

This issue is important because battery capacity and size determine the efficient operation of the device. An inappropriate replacement can get you into a lot of trouble. You should not miss the essential information below to find the answer.

CR2016 vs. CR2023 At Quick Glance



You may have encountered CR2016 at least once but have no idea about it. It is one of the coin cells made from lithium manganese dioxide.

This battery often powers small and portable electrical appliances. Its most common applications are in digital watches, pocket calculators, or remote-control car keys. You often see it in pairs instead of individual cells to ensure stable output.

One of its biggest plus points is stability and safety. It has a low-load discharge condition which contributes to long-lasting usage. Users also appreciate it for its compact size and ease of installation. Here is a quick rundown of its benefits:

  • Stable output during operation
  • Great pulse capability
  • Long battery age
  • Free from mercury


CR2032 Battery

CR2032 comes from the same family as CR2016 but possesses the distinct features mentioned below. 

At first glance, these cells are more active and thus become a great choice for devices with high consumption. Also known as the CMOS battery, it works with the computer’s BIOS or the clock.

Some users consider it a well-balanced choice between the power source and size. It is applied to a full range of applications, such as computer motherboards, garage door keys, toys, LED lights, doorbells, and medical devices.

Similar to the option above, it has a low discharge characteristic. You can store it for a long time with a minimum energy conservation rate of 90%. Refer to the listings below for its general benefits:

  • A wide range of voltage adaption
  • High capacity
  • Environmentally friendly
  • A full lineup for practical use

CR2032 Battery Vs CR2016: Similarities

Because both come from the same category, they have much in common. As their name suggests, the first two letters, “CR,” indicate their similarities.

In detail, they contain Lithium Manganese Dioxide as the main chemical of the composition. You can find them as round and flat objects reminiscent of coins. Their physical appearance also features the same 20mm diameter.

Regarding performance characteristics, both products produce a nominal voltage of 3 volts. They perform well over a wide temperature range from -30°C to +60°C.

Remember that they are non-rechargeable batteries, or in other words, you can only use them once. Once they run out of energy, you must dispose of the waste properly and aim for a new replacement.

On the bright side, both items do not cost you too much. The best part is that they last longer, so the interval between new purchases is usually long.

Both batteries are safe to use if you follow the installation guidelines. For example, you should have them face down while inserting them into the device.

It’s best to keep them out of the reach of children and pets. Though the composition does not contain heavy metals, swallowed parts may come into contact with bodily fluids creating undesirable reactions. 

If this happens, stay calm, contact the nearest medical care facility, and implement first aid options as directed.

Differences Between CR2032 And CR2016

Cell Number

These coin cell batteries come with distinctive labels, which implies the dimension difference. The first two digits refer to diameter in millimeters; unquestionably, both have “20” in their names.

What distinguishes the two is that the latter two digits indicate the thickness. The former measures 1.6 mm while the latter is double at 3.2 mm.

As a result, this characteristic leads to another disparity in their physical appearance – their weights are miles apart. CR2032 weighs 2.9 grams, almost twice as much as CR2016 (1.7 grams).


The difference in internal construction determines unassociated capacities. The average of 2016 cells is about 90 mAh. In comparison, the other delivers long-lasting reliable power which reaches up to 240 mAh.

This superiority means that 2032 battery cells take the crown regarding power. This outstanding ability allows it to expand compatibility with more devices, especially high-drain ones. However, both can work independently in most everyday applications.

Purchase Price

The price gap between these coin battery models is unclear because the pricing often depends on the place of purchase. A single unit price of CR2016 usually costs you $0.33, while that of CR2023 is $0.34 – a tiny gap, right?

In addition, the price varies with the brand and quantity. For instance, you get a small discount when you buy in bulk. A set of 2016 ranges between $1 – $4

Since 2032 cells serve stronger performance, they are more expensive, from $2 to $5. The CR2016 is a good choice if you prioritize economic components.

Runtime & Shelf Life

Due to the large average load, which means a lot of energy storage capacity, CR2032 can maintain continuous operation for 3-10 hours. The average operating time of CR2016 lasts between 2-6 hours.

Once again, it depends on the power consumption of the device. If you want an option that supports LED lights or multi-function alarms, the first one deserves your attention.

Regarding battery life, CR2016 usually maintains good performance for 6 years. Some manufacturers claim that their products have existed for up to 10 years.

According to their user manual, G-Shock watch models that have been equipped with this battery type last 2 years. Some consumers have gone against this conservative estimate. The experience has proven that their items cease working after 7 years or more with moderate manners.

On the other hand, CR2032 tends to run out of power as early as 2 years as it supports electronic devices with high demands. However, if the equipment consumes about 1 microamp or less, these components stay in good condition for up to 10 years.

Can I Use CR2032 Instead Of CR2016?

Absolutely, NO. Despite a long list of similarities, CR2016 and CR2032 are not interchangeable

In rare cases, 2016 cells can fit in a 2032 battery compartment thanks to its compact dimensions. But experts do not recommend this measure because the installation is not fixed, and the difference in capacity can breed damage.

From another point of view, can you stack two CR2016 units to substitute for a single CR2032? Though the thickness of the former is half the latter, the quick answer is, once again, NO.

Simply put, this measure changes the stable voltage level of the battery bank compared to CR2032. The set of two 2016 cells produces 6 volts, leading to incompatibility with devices that use 3 volts of power. 

Plus, such a random setup ruins the circuit design of your running application.


Which Battery Replaces CR2016?

The right battery equivalents of CR2016 belong to ECR2016, DL2016, BR2016, DL2016B, CR2016-1W, BT2016-1W, 280-208, KCR2016, and SBT11. All of these options share the same physical dimension and voltage.

Besides, you can consider other closely related batteries, including CR2025, CR1620, CR1632, CR1616, CR12220, and CR1216. Still, take these replacements for temporary solutions only and carry out some mechanical adjustments.

What Battery Replace CR2032?

Look for DL2032, BR2032, CR2032H, ECR2032, 5004LC, DL2032, EA2032C, AWI L14, SB-T15, RFA-35, LM2032, and LF1/2V. They are different labels of the same type of coin battery.

Other lithium-ion batteries, such as CR2016, CR1620, CR1220, and CR1616, may be useful in some improvised cases. That said, we do not recommend these alternatives because of their potential risks.


You can hardly see the difference between the CR2016 battery vs. CR2032 at first sight unless you put the two button cells side by side. Even so, the obvious dissimilarities define the fact that the two are not interchangeable. 

Do not risk substituting one for another because your actions will inevitably end up with damage or accidents. It is best to turn to the recommended equivalents for optimal performance and safety.

Automotive Mechanic at PowerAll

With 7 years experience in management positions leading automotive mechanics at PowerAll, Erik Watkins wishes to share useful knowledge and information about automotive mechanical equipment.


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