Laptop Battery Maintenance Myths

1 – Laptop batteries need to be charged and discharged at least three times in order to activate the battery.

This may be true if you buy a laptop computer that is more than one year old.  Laptop batteries do not need to be activated because they have been activated when the batteries are shipped from the factory. 

 2 – The first charge must be at least 12 hours.

This is an early belief when the battery control circuit of the Ni-MH model is applicable. But with the invention of the smart charge and the discharge control circuit of notebook batteries, that belief is now a joke.  When the laptop battery is fully charged, the charge current will automatically shut off, even if you continue to charge the battery for 120 hours.  In general, even the slowest charging machine would only take six hours to be fully charged, any more is just a waste of time.

3 – The battery requires regular calibration once a month and complete charge-discharge.

Li-ion battery will have reduced memory effect if you use the battery frequently.  You should discharge the battery relatively low, about 10%-15%, before re-charging.  In general, you should charge-discharge the battery once every two months.  However, if you rarely use the battery, then every 3 months is recommended.

4 – Enhanced battery capacity can be calibrated.

The correction is when the actual capacity of the battery and that of the record in the control circuit are not the same. The right to conduct a deep battery charge and discharge operation for the control circuit record is to bring them closer to the actual situation of the battery. This is a manifestation of the real capacity of the battery rather than to enhance the capacity. The key factor here is the actual capacity of the battery. 

If the battery’s actual capacity is higher than the control circuit, correction can make the battery appear to increase its capacity. If the battery’s actual capacity is lower than the control circuit, then the correction will reduce the capacity of the battery.  This is why many people argue the reasons for adjusting the results.  Please remember that the true correction is to make the actual battery capacity shown by the battery and control.

5 – Compatible battery charger can be used.

Notebook power consumption is much greater than cell phones.  In the extreme cases, the power needed to charge the battery and at the same time need to fully support the operation of the laptop. Laptop normally doesn’t have compatible chargers, because every laptop’s voltage, current, and the connectors are different. The compatible chargers can be used in different kinds of laptop and are more expensive than the original chargers, even though the connectors are the same.

6 – Battery needs to be fully charged before storing.

Storing the battery whether it is fully charged or fully discharged is not advisable. Long-term storage of photoelectric batteries will lose their activity, and even lead to the control circuit protection demise.  The best method of storage is to discharge the battery to about 40% and then stored.  Lithium batteries should be stored in a cool and dry environment away from moisture and heat. 

7 – The cells inside a battery can be replaced if it no longer works.

Changing the cells inside the battery can be very harmful.  Manufacturers have developed a self-locking mechanism that prevents tampering with the battery. 

8 – If a battery does not charge past 99%, and it is charged longer, the battery will explode.

Laptop battery explosion is rare, unless it is assembled incorrectly. Even if the battery experiences a short circuit, it is still very rare for it to cause fire. At the worst, it would only melt the battery casing.  However, there is a mechanism inside the battery that prevents any further damage to the battery. Today’s laptop batteries are equipped with thermal detection circuit, much like cell phones. When the battery temperature is too high, the control circuit will be forced to turn the battery off to prevent any damages.

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