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Old 01-03-2006, 09:04 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Best charging strategy for battery life?

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I've heard so many things about the best way to charge a battery for longevity that I don't know what to believe anymore. Plus, changes in technology seemed to have changed the rules!

I'd like my BB battery to last as long as possible before I have to replace it. What's the best approach for charging it?

- Overnight deep charge once a day?
- Every time I sit down at my laptop, even if only for a few minutes?
- Let it run down as much as possible, then charge it?
- Is it OK to use car chargers? They used to be horrible for battery life!

Does the same apply to laptop batteries these days?

Also, I'm so miffed that my 7250 charges so slowly after the OS update. Anyone know how to hack the sucker to make it charge faster (or is that bad for battery longevity?).

Thanks!
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Old 01-03-2006, 09:17 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Pretty positive all rechargable batteries in electronics work the same.

They work as follows:

They have a sort of "memory" Before you begin to operate a the battery, it must be charged fully and completely until it wont take any more. Then, you must make sure you use it fully to its end the first time.

This strategy develops its initial life to its fullest.

To maintain the strong battery life u you must maintain your battery. This means at least a few times a month, (weekly or bi-weekly is ideal) you must use the full life of the battery, full to empty.

What you want to avoid in rechargeable batteries is constantly charging them when the battery is not needing it. If you consistently charge it when it is at say 50% capacity, eventually it will recognize this as the full length. So you will permanently lose the full capacity of the battery.

So in wraps:
First charge and drain is extremely important and be sure to maintain your battery on a consitent schedule.

Hope this helps, apologize for a double post if it is.

Edit: Car chargers kill battery life if used spastically.

Last edited by brandbb : 01-03-2006 at 09:19 PM.
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Old 01-03-2006, 09:41 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Hmmm... Pretty much in line with what I thought... I guess things haven't changed that much.

No more listening to punk saleschildren at Fry's Electronics anymore. I'm getting my information on the net baby!

Thanks!
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Old 01-04-2006, 05:54 AM   #4 (permalink)
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I think the memory thing is bull just use the battery till its dead and charge it I just leave my on the car charger
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Old 01-04-2006, 06:40 AM   #5 (permalink)
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Ignore the above posts because they are mostly incorrect!

You do not need to drain lithium batteries. You shouldn't drain lithium batteries. Treat them like lead-acid car batteries; top them up on a regular basis.

However even with a smart charger, do not leave them in the charger for extended periods because some chargers are not as smart as others, and can overcharge the battery.

The full drain rule only applied to ni-cads (old technology)

So there!
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Old 11-10-2006, 02:06 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Charge whenever you can. Just in case of an emergency. you never know
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Old 11-10-2006, 02:18 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Roofus is correct. There should be no worries with lithium batteries that are in use today.

I use my car charger as needed. I generally try to let the BB get to 20% or so unless I know I will be without a charger nearby for an extended period. I also tend to let the laptop run down every so often, but the chargers you get and the on board electronics usually prevent overcharging these days.
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Old 11-10-2006, 04:28 PM   #8 (permalink)
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...and check out Moderator Mark Rejhon's 'sticky': Updated FAQ's at top of the page.
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Old 11-10-2006, 07:11 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by apaul
...and check out Moderator Mark Rejhon's 'sticky': Updated FAQ's at top of the page.
Here's another good source for more info:

How to charge - when to charge table
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Old 11-10-2006, 08:25 PM   #10 (permalink)
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That's an excellent summary TT. it is interesting to note that they recommend storing the device at 40% rather than 100 percent charge. I have heard this from other sources too! Don't know why though!
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Old 11-10-2006, 08:46 PM   #11 (permalink)
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Use it all day, then plug it in before you go to bed.
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Old 11-11-2006, 04:37 AM   #12 (permalink)
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I run my mine down to about 20% and then charge. That is about every 2 1/2 -3 days.
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Old 11-11-2006, 04:56 AM   #13 (permalink)
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i usually charge mine overnight almost everynight
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Old 11-11-2006, 07:22 PM   #14 (permalink)
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i have to agree that i think the draining and charging and all that is crap.

I've been so concerned since i bought my blackberry about how much i should let it run down and how long i should let it charge so as to not hurt the battery.

i'm fairly positive that most of the thinking on "battery care" has to do with old battery types and not the lithium batteries.
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Old 11-11-2006, 09:11 PM   #15 (permalink)
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its all been sporadically said in this thread, but battery charging isnt as complex as people make it seem. it just depends on the type of battery youre charging.


NiCD- old style cell batteries. they have memory and like to be fully discharged then fully charged each use. they also hold the least energy, but they tend to be the most resiliant type of battery. they operate in a wide range of temperatures and conditions.

Lead Acid, Deep Cycle- looks like a car battery, but its for long lasting cycles. Used mainly in boats for trolling motors, these batteries MUST be fully discharged before each charge. they will build up memory quickly if not discharged regularly

Lead Acid, high cold start amp- the kind we all use in our cars. they provide a lot of power very quickly. they like to be kept at a high charge, a full discharge can ruin them. they are basically the oppisite of a deep cycle battery. these have memory too, but in the oppisite way. a full discharge will deteriorate the electrical plates inside.

NiMH- the sort that is replacing most NiCD batteries. They hold more power, and they have no memory. they use hydrogen as part of the chemical reaction, so they are safe for the enviroment as well. these can be charged any way you wish, there are no specific rules for charging, as long as you use a nimh charger.

Li-ION- what we have in cell phones. currently these are the highest capacity rechargeable technology we have. they have no memory and can be charged at will as long as you use a li-ion charger. these are also the most sensitive type of battery (you know all about the sony battery explosions). the chargers must closely monitor the charging rates, and must stop charging when at peak capacity. furthermore, the device that uses them must know when to shut off in order to prevent damage to the battery. a full-discharge will render the battery useless.

also, li-ion batteries have a short shelf life. they will not live longer then a few years, usually a maximum of five. this does not matter if you use the batteries or not. a regularly used li-ion will last just as long as one that has been sitting on the shelf the whole time. if you are buying a li-ion battery, do not buy if its more then two years old, you simply wont get that many more days of use out of it.

whats really nice about li-ion batteries? they only need about 1/4 of the charge time to reach 80% charge. ever notice how the battery seems to charge up to 70% power in about 10 min? then, after that, it takes about 40min to reach full capacity? thats the way they are, and its perfectly fine to use them this way. so, when you are in a hurry and you know your phone wont last, just charge it for whatever minutes you can. a five minute charge will easily last a night. its a main reason why li-ion gained so much popularity even though they are the most fragile. most importantnly though, they hold the most power for a given space, a must for cell phones.

typically, li-ions like to operate anywhere from 40% charge on up. so, if anything try to keep your cell phone around half charge or more. again though, it really doesnt matter since your phone will shut off before the capacity of the battery goes too low.

i could go on.... thats just off the top of my head

Last edited by dabull : 11-11-2006 at 09:13 PM.
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Old 11-12-2006, 05:11 AM   #16 (permalink)
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"Lead Acid- Deep Cycle" The're good for trolling . . . I guess that's what the bottom-feeders at NTP use . . . . .
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Old 11-12-2006, 06:51 AM   #17 (permalink)
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Just use it and charge at night and enjoy.

Most likely by the time the battery need replacing, you will want another device.

Just enjoy your BB!
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Old 11-13-2006, 06:12 PM   #18 (permalink)
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I tend to just charge my BB overnight but then again I have the EX battery which I can get about 2 days of use out of it if I were to forget.
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Old 11-14-2006, 05:43 PM   #19 (permalink)
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I just plug mine in before I go to bed, and unplug it when I leave the house in the morning. Rarely get down to 3 bars (out of 4), sometimes down to 2 on a heavy-use day.
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Old 11-15-2006, 11:11 PM   #20 (permalink)
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good day!

for all your questions regarding batteries, please visit the site:

batteryuniversity.com

this site will answer most if not all of your queries regarding batteries...
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