Friday, October 31, 2008

How to Troubleshoot a Battery Charger

Make sure the charger cord is plugged in and the outlet is getting power.
Look closely at the battery pack. Is there corrosion or leakage? If so, replace the battery immediately.
Test the charger. For DC chargers, set a voltmeter to 25 VDC and touch the contacts with the probes. The meter should read about 1 V more than the charger's rating. If the reading is zero, switch the probes.
Test an AC charger by setting a voltmeter to 25 VAC. Touch the contacts with the probes. The transformer in the charger is bad if you get no reading at all.
Check the contacts. These are metal strips or points located on the appliance and in the charging base. With the charger unplugged, wipe them with a cotton swab. Use a fine emery board to remove visible corrosion.

Thursday, October 16, 2008

How to Test a Battery Charger

Too you'll need:

Step 1
Plug in your charger to an electrical outlet. Remove any batteries you may have charging in the unit.

Step 2
Turn on your voltmeter unit. Be sure there's power getting to the meter. Plug in the test probes into the voltmeter according to the meter's instructions. Set the selector switch to the highest level for DC Volt or whatever is recommended in the meter's instructions.

Step 3
Take a battery or battery pack that's compatible to your battery charger. Make sure the battery has no corrosion and is not leaking fluid. Touch the positive end of the battery with the red probe. Take the black test probe and place it on the negative side of the battery.

Step 4
Check the readout on the voltmeter and see where the pointer is indicating to. If it's on the left side, or negative side, switch the test probes. If it's on the right side, it will show that the battery is receiving some charge. Where it points to on the meter will determine how much charge it received.

Step 5
Check the battery charger to see how much power it's giving off, if you continue to receive a negative reading from the batteries. A negative reading will indicate a bad battery charger, and you should replace it. If the charger has sufficient amount of power flowing through it, it's more than likely the batteries are bad and just won't hold a charge.

Thursday, October 2, 2008

How to handle a new rechargeable battery

1. Before you use your new  battery for the first time you must charge them fully. Please note that for new rechargeable batteries, it is often necessary to cycle them at least three to five times or more before they reach peak performance and capacity. The first several times that you use your device , you may find that they run down (discharge) quickly during use. Not to worry, this is normal until the batteries actually form up.

2.It is important to condition (fully discharge and then fully charge) the battery every two to three weeks. Failure to do so may significantly shorten the pda battery's life (this does not apply to Li-Ion batteries, which do not require conditioning). To discharge, simply run the device under the pda pocket pc battery's power until it shuts down or until you get a low battery warning. Then recharge the battery as instructed in the user's manual.

3. If the battery will not be in use for a month or longer, it is recommended that it be removed from the device and stored in a cool, dry, clean place.
4. It is normal for the replacement battery to become warm to the touch during charging and discharging.

Laptop battery

What is the run time of laptop battery?

Laptop batteries have two main ratings on them: Volts and Amperes. Because size and weight of laptop batteries is limited when compared to larger batteries such as car batteries, most companies show their ratings with Volts and Milliamperes. One thousand Milliamperes equals 1 Ampere. When buying a battery, select batteries with the most Milliamperes (or mAh). Batteries are also rated by Watt-Hours, perhaps the simplest rating of all. This is found by multiplying the Volts and the Amperes together. For example:

14.4 Volts, 4000mAh (Note: 4000mAh is equal to 4.0 Amperes).

14.4 x 4.0 = 57.60 Watt-Hours

Watt-Hours signifies the energy needed to power one watt for one hour. This calculation shows this laptop battery can power 57.60 watts for one hour. If your laptop runs at 20.50 watts, as an example, this laptop battery could power your laptop for 2.8 hours.
How can I maximize the performance of my laptop battery?

There are several steps you can take to help you get maximum performance from your laptop battery:

Prevent the Memory Effect - Keep the laptop battery healthy by fully charging and then fully discharging it at least once every two to three weeks. Exceptions to the rule are Li-Ion batteries which do not suffer from the memory effect.

Keep the laptop Batteries Clean - It's a good idea to clean dirty battery contacts with a cotton swab and alcohol. This helps maintain a good connection between the battery and the portable device.

Exercise the Battery - Do not leave the battery dormant for long periods of time. We recommend using the battery at least once every two to three weeks. If a laptop battery has not been used for a long period of time, perform the new battery break in procedure described above.

Battery Storage - If you don't plan on using the laptop battery for a month or more, store it in a clean, dry, cool place away from heat and metal objects. NiCad, NiMH and Li-Ion batteries will self-discharge during storage; remember to recharge the batteries before use.