How can I tell if a Wii battery is useless or no longer rechargeable

I bought this Wii last year for some kids that were going to be staying at my house for nearly a whole month while their family got their lives together. Bought the basics and the Wii Active. Funny thing is that one of the handheld units really did not get used at all and sat in the cradle for more than a year charging. The other unit that did get used sat there for the whole year but was used frequently for that 1 month period.
What I cannot figure out is the blue lights. I can charge overnight and see that one of the four blue lights come on with the more used handheld and no lights come on with the one that may have been used twice for 30 mins max.
I wonder if the cradle is not charging properly or if the batteries have died from sitting so long.
I went out and bought a replacement battery from Best Buy and it does not seem to be recharging properly. I am wondering if there are more than one version of the Wii and maybe I picked up the wrong battery. At this point I can only use the one handheld as it has the one single charge light ( out of four). It works barely. Any thoughts on what I can do check etc. Thank you very much for being here and supporting such a great forum.
RUA Volunteer2?Tableau Trainer & Consultant Sales Exec.Asked:
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A wii controller uses standard AA batteries.  I would not buy custom batteries if that is what you are doing.  

I buy rechargeable 3200mAh AA batteries (duracell in my case) and charge them myself, in a dedicated charger.  I have enough of them that if a wii controller dies on me, I can just swap in some freshly charged batteries and recharge the used ones.  This will even let you use the wii controller while charging the used batteries.

The high capacity rechargeable batteries last so long anyway, that I am able to go for a long, long while between swapping and recharging.  You can also get lower capacity batteries, down to about 1200mAh I believe, but I would go for the high capacity ones.
Also, by doing like I suggested above, you will avoid trickle charging your batteries to death.
RUA Volunteer2?Tableau Trainer & Consultant Sales Exec.Author Commented:
Good solution I don't know why I did not think of that. I was thinking I had to go with the replacement sets that came with the unit and was somehow stuck with them the kids will be happy. Thank you gentlemen.
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