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Old 07-15-2012, 01:01 AM   #151
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I was told best approach for Lithium-Ion batteries is ABC - "Always Be Charging."
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Old 07-15-2012, 02:20 AM   #152
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I was told best approach for Lithium-Ion batteries is ABC - "Always Be Charging."
That's extremely bad advice; you certainly shouldn't leave a battery constantly charging.
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Old 07-15-2012, 04:18 AM   #153
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Seemingly simple pronouncements/assumptions/observations tend to have caveats in the invisible or small print...

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Old 07-15-2012, 08:30 PM   #154
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I was told best approach for Lithium-Ion batteries is ABC - "Always Be Charging."
I think I've read it somewhere that Lithium Ion has this 'memory" effect where repeated charging while there is still battery power will reduce the total battery power over time. Can someone confirm it?
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Old 07-16-2012, 03:50 AM   #155
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I think I've read it somewhere that Lithium Ion has this 'memory" effect where repeated charging while there is still battery power will reduce the total battery power over time. Can someone confirm it?
No, you're thinking of the old NiCad batteries. Lithium batteries don't have a memory effect, but you still shouldn't continually charge them.
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Old 07-17-2012, 03:13 AM   #156
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No, you're thinking of the old NiCad batteries. Lithium batteries don't have a memory effect, but you still shouldn't continually charge them.
Thanks, Harry. Then, why shouldn't I continually charge Lithium batteries? When I'm not using my phone, I always have it charged. So this is a no-no?
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Old 07-17-2012, 08:55 AM   #157
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Thanks, Harry. Then, why shouldn't I continually charge Lithium batteries? When I'm not using my phone, I always have it charged. So this is a no-no?
Yes, you'll shorten the battery life. Topping up is fine, but don't leave it permanently connected to the charger.
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Old 07-17-2012, 01:02 PM   #158
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actually, with lithium and nimh, the charger senses when the battery is full, and shuts off the charging. so in that sense, there's no problem with leaving it permanently connected to the charger, it won't be "constantly charging".

the problem comes if you don't actually use the battery. in addition to the two factors of number of charge cycles and age of the battery, there are two other equally (or more) important factors: temperature, and usage. keeping the battery at a high temperature (eg., inside your hot laptop!) shortens its life a lot. and, you must regularly use it, otherwise the internal connections will become corroded and even though it can take a charge, it can't effectively deliver the current.

i used to think i was smart leaving my laptop plugged in all the time, so i wouldn't use up the limited number of charge cycles. wrong! that's one of the worst things you can do. within two years, my battery was dead. the symptoms are that the battery has a relatively low charge cycle count, and seems to take a full charge. but after a short period of using it, the laptop will suddenly shut down, with no warning that you're getting close to empty.

that's why apple recommends doing a "calibration" thing at least once a month, fully discharge and recharge. i'd say do it more often.

apple doesn't recommend using a macbook with no battery installed; sometimes if extra power is needed, it will be drawn from the battery. so one idea is to use an old battery while you've got it plugged in to AC. store your "good" battery only partly charged, about 40% or so, and in a cool place. take it out and use it once a month at least. it's not so convenient, when you have to dash out the door and your battery isn't fully charged. but it's the best way to keep a long life.
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Old 07-17-2012, 02:55 PM   #159
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I think I've read it somewhere that Lithium Ion has this 'memory" effect where repeated charging while there is still battery power will reduce the total battery power over time. Can someone confirm it?
I think what you mean is a sort of calibration within the device's battery percentage counter. It usually bases its prediction of battery percentage based on a few good full drain and full charge cycles. If it notices that you charge your phone way too much at say for example, 40%, it will think that at 40%, your battery is already drained and will then adjust the calibration to show that when your battery is nearing 40%, it will display near 0%. This will make you perceive that the battery is running out too quickly.
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Old 07-17-2012, 03:28 PM   #160
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This battery discussion applies to all devices (phones, tablets, computers) that use lithium-based batteries. I've never troubled to do this before, but I'll plan to start calibrating the battery (fully drain, leave off a half hour, then fully charge) for my notebooks and devices about once a month. (Edit: Specifically, devices that are plugged into power most of the time, the others should be okay without regular calibrating.)

I haven't checked lately, but probably the iPhone in my car has a permanently dead battery because of leaving it there baking in the heat, not using it for months. Sigh. Guess I'll have to remember to carry the phone around rather than leave it in the car.

Edit: brain implants will be a lot more convenient—if they don't need messing with the battery...

Last edited by unboggling; 07-17-2012 at 05:03 PM.
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