Rechargeable batteries are EVERYWHERE! Over the years you’ve probably heard mountains of advice about how to keep them running well and for a long time. Today’s batteries are different from the past so we’ve done our research! We consulted the experts and even visited a laboratory for battery development and come up with these top 5 tips to get the most out of your lithium ion rechargeable batteries!
- Heat kills batteries – One of the biggest challenges in engineering today’s high-performance batteries is how to dissipate the heat generated when a device has heavy use and when it recharges. In terms of power tools, heavy continuous usage builds up heat the fastest. So wherever possible, give your tool and battery a break when you can. Even a few seconds break can make a difference to make that charge last longer. If you can let them cool before recharging – all the better. Obviously keep them out of a scorching hot truck in the summer as well.
- Do NOT drain fully – Today’s batteries do NOT need to be reset. Recharge them frequently as your usage allows.
- Quick recharge – if you’ve run out and you really need just a little more life to finish the job, a quick 5-minute recharge may get it done for you. Most batteries will charge a significant percentage of the battery’s capacity in the first several minutes of charging.
- Keep spare batteries – Because constant use drains batteries faster than doing the same job over a longer period of time, simply swapping a battery out in the middle of a job will make the two batteries last longer than using one until its dead and then using the other one until its dead.
- Store Them Charged – If you won’t be using a battery for months, charge it fully first and remove it from the tool.
- (Bonus tip) Look for tools with brushless motors. They consume less power to do the same work and will drain your battery slower over time.
When shopping for batteries, look for the AMP-HOUR rating shown as 5aH for instance. Higher voltage battery systems operate more efficiently in intense applications and therefore tend to be more powerful. The battery Amp hour rating indicates charge capacity, so the higher the rating, the longer the run time.
Choose the right battery for the job. For an impact driver for instance, you don’t want a 60Volt 12ah battery because it weighs a ton and you don’t want the extra weight for a drill. A 20V 5ah battery is probably great for that small draw tool. But on a table saw, the 12ah will probably last you all day and more.
The DeWalt FlexVolt system is the most innovative and extensive of any battery line on the market. Every tool is engineered to talk to the battery to get the most out of it. Even the chargers are engineered to charge fast and extend the life of the battery.
Never throw a lithium battery in the trash. Drop at a local recycling center or to a Koopman location and drop in the battery recycling box.
For additional battery information, see these resources.
- Battery Care post: https://www.dewalt.com/dewalt-dna/featured-articles/battery-safety
- Power Tool Institute: https://www.takechargeofyourbattery.com/
Thank you for reading, and let us know what you think! Leave a comment below or reach out to us at koopmanpro.com.