How Can You Extend the Life of Li-Ion Batteries?

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Lithium-ion batteries are everywhere these days, used in everything from cellphones and laptops to cordless power tools and electric vehicles. 

And though they are the most widely applied technology for mobile energy storage, there’s lots of confusion among users about the best ways to prolong the life of lithium-ion batteries.

Here are a few ways to keep your lithium-ion batteries healthy.

Keep your batteries at room temperature

That means between 20 and 25 degrees C. The worst thing that can happen to a lithium-ion battery is to have a full charge and be subjected to elevated temperatures. So don’t leave or charge your mobile device’s battery in your car if it’s hot out. Heat is by far the largest factor when it comes to reducing lithium-ion battery life.

Batteries hate being too full or too empty

Ideally, you'd never let them charge over 80 percent or discharge to less than 20 percent, because being outside the 80-20 percent range, on either side, stresses and degrades a lithium-ion battery. If you need the endurance of a fully-charged battery, then go ahead and do a full charge – but take the device off the charger straight away once it hits 100 percent. That means charging phones overnight, and leaving seldom-used batteries on the charger, are both bad news, so figure out a charging routine that's both convenient and kind to your cells.

Keep batteries away from moisture

Moisture and tool batteries don't mix. This applies to using cordless tools in rainy weather, as well as storing the tool or battery in an area where it may get wet. A few drops of rain won't be an issue, but working in a steady rain could cause electric shock and also ruin both the battery and the tool.

Storing a loose battery in a damp, humid environment could cause its terminals to corrode, making it harder to charge the battery. Moisture can also seep into the battery housing, permanently damaging the battery. Do not use a battery that has been submerged in water or that shows signs of moisture damage.

Non-use care

If a Li-ion battery is not to be used for an extended period of time it should ideally be brought to a charge level of between about 40% and 60% of full charge. Ideally, it should be periodically charged to overcome the effects of self-discharge. Keep it at around 50% charge level and ensures it is in the best condition with neither electrode depleted of lithium ions - a key factor in lifespan reduction.

Final thoughts

Lithium-ion batteries are a huge improvement over previous types of batteries. Getting 500 charge/discharge cycles from a lithium-ion battery is not unheard of. Just follow the above guidelines. For more information about lithium-ion batteries, please contact us immediately. 

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