(This is not a spam question or a homework question)
I was wondering would you please explain to me in a simple way that I can understand: why do batteries need to get rubbed on soft things occasionally so they can work again when you put them back into the device?
It applies mostly to lithium based batteries but will help others to some small extent. It applies to batteries that are weak or near their end point in life and if they are rechargeable then it will help them a little before they go back to the charger.
The rubbing effect does not recharge the battery but what it does is warm up the internal chemistry of the cells. Batteries are temperature sensitive to a fairly great degree and increasing the temperature accelerates the chemical reactions inside the cells. Actually, rubbing the battery between the hands is a better solution that rubbing them on a towel or soft furniture coverings. The warmth of the hands is what helps. When I was a child, for example, we would place the worn batteries in the oven for a few minutes and really heat them up!
I suggest you google the following phrase and read the results; it will be very interesting. Goggle these words: why rub batteries
Have a wonderful day.