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Trojan Tips 7 – Understanding Battery Capacity & Life Expectations


Learn more about battery capacity ratings, tips on achieving maximum capacity, the signs of aging batteries, and how depth of discharge measurements relate to overall battery life.

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Understanding Laptop Batteries


Understanding Laptop Batteries

Welcome to a Laptop Battery specialist of the Compaq Laptop Battery First post by:

Types of Laptop Batteries:

Nickel Cadmium (NiCd) Batteries: These were the first rechargeable batteries manufactured for laptops. They were relatively inexpensive, had high output and versatile, because they could be used in a wide variety of products. However, NiCd batteries have now been abandoned by laptop manufacturers with the introduction of more efficient and lighter-weight batteries such as  Compaq Armada E500 Battery.

Nickel Metal Hydride (NiMH) Batteries: NiMH was a big improvement concerning power output, reliability, cost, safety and capacity.

The “memory effect” was the only issue with NiMH batteries which require them to be fully discharged before recharging to gain maximum output. These batteries can still be found in older model laptops.

Lithium Ion (LiON): This type of batteries has become the most popular for laptops since the “memory effect” has been eliminated, and much lighter than the other two in weight. However, the market price is also the highest.

Battery Cycle:

One battery cycle is used every time a battery is charged or discharged. Technically speaking, it is defined as the number of cycles a battery can perform before its nominal capacity falls below 80% of its initial rated capacity. Lifetimes of 500 to 1200 cycles are typical. For example, NiCad battery has a cycle life of 500-1000 or more cycles.

Battery Run-Time:

Battery run-time depends on a number of factors. Most of the time, it is the design of, and the power demands made by the machine that determines the actual battery run-time. For example, use of the screen, the hard drive and other accessories will significantly influence the duration of the run-time.

What are Smart and Dumb Laptop Batteries:

Some laptop batteries are equipped with internal microprocessor circuits that help manage battery energy, set the charger to the correct charge algorithm, predict running time, or according to Smart Battery System (SBS) forum, provide a state-of-charge (SoC) indication. These batteries are called “Smart” batteries. Those batteries termed as, “dumb” do not have these features, may be just counterparts, or may function to provide power only.

Optimizing Laptop Batteries:

1. “Condition” is a term for fully charging and discharging a new laptop battery to maximize performance and allow it to reach its maximum rated capacity. NiMH and NiCd batteries need to be conditioned at least once a month to reduce the “memory effect”.

2. Metal connecters should be cleaned occasionally to maintain good conductivity

3. Ensure that device’s power management features in the BIOS and Operating System are optimized, turning off the screen, using speed step

4. Avoid leaving your laptop on overnight all the time while charging. The laptop should be turned off occasionally.

5. Store the battery in a cool, dry, clean place if you’re not going to use it for a month or longer.

6. Turn down the brightness of the LCD screen when watching a movie on our laptop. Decrypt DVD movies and store it on your hard disk drive to avoid constant use of the DVD drive which consumes a lot of power

7. Never expose your laptop battery to heat, moisture, short-circuit, drop or physically abuse it.

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Understanding Laptop Batteries.


Understanding Laptop Batteries.

Laptop batteries come in a plethora of styles and makes. Depending on the particular laptop one has and personal preferences based on particular needs, the laptop battery has endless possibilities!

Laptop batteries are virtual power packs with an extended lifespan but requiring constant attention and periodic recharging. Of course, each laptop battery is different, so it’s important to learn as much beforehand about what kind of laptop battery is needed and what its specifications are. Laptop batteries, like everything else, have particular conditions to consider based on the style, make, size, and purpose of the laptop battery.

The types of laptop batteries are endless. Some examples are as follows: IBM ThinkPad Ni-MH, Compaq Presario R3000/4000 CA/CL Li-Ion, and Hitachi Pro-7000 Li-Ion, just to name a few. Each of these Laptop batteries is designed for a particular system having certain features.

It is believed that Lithium-charged laptop batteries are the highest quality. Therefore Lithium-Ion laptop batteries are a sure thing with long life. Most laptop batteries are Lithium-Ion-charged. Lithium, a soft, silver-white metallic element, is a common charging element that powers laptops with fast speed, reception, and interface response.

Still, some points on laptop battery recharging and maintenance are important to know to maximize the laptop battery lifespan. First, the laptop shouldn’t be locked in a hot space for a long period of time. Ideally, a temperature somewhere between 50F and 95F would be appropriate and safe. Along the other metric system, between 10C and 35C is about right. Specifically, 22C should be the temperature sought.

In regards to recharging, fully-charge the laptop battery when plugging in for the first time. Lithium-based batteries should be constantly and properly maintained in order to keep the electrons moving. This keeps the charge active for as long as possible. Next, the laptop battery should be charged and recharged periodically, and that should never stop. Finally, laptop batteries should be stored with a 50% charge. Ironically, storing a laptop battery at full charge for an extended period of time will cause it to lose some capacity. Moderation is the key to properly maintaining laptop batteries!

Whatever laptop battery is required, “charging up” on the specifications beforehand and knowing what is needed is a great start. These laptop batteries cost anywhere from .00 to 0.00, depending, so buying the right one will save a lot of time and money.

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