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Battery Guide


Cell Phone Battery Guide

Cell Phone Battery Types - The four most common types of batteries for cellular phones are:

Lithium Ion (Li-Ion) Lithium Polymer (Li-Poly)
Nickel Metal Hydride (NiMH) Nickel Cadmium (NiCd)

Lithium Ion Batteries (LiION) are the most popular cell phone batteries available.
Li-ION have replaced NiMH batteries for many phones because they provide 4 distinct advantages:

  1. Li-ION batteries provide 40% longer Standby and Talk Times than NiMH batteries.
  2. Li-ION batteries are lighter and more compact than NiMH batteries.
  3. Li-ION batteries does not suffer from memory effect .
  4. Li-ION batteries will last over 30% longer than NiMH batteries because the cells accept more charge cycles.
Li-ION batteries rank as the "best value" of all cellular phone battery types. Batteries4less.com provides the largest selection of Li-ION batteries anywhere. Take advantage of the reliability, long battery life, and compact size of our cell phone batteries at the Lowest Prices Guaranteed!

Lithium Polymer Battery (Li-Poly)

Lithium Polymer Battery(Li-Poly) is the newest and most advanced technology for cellular phone batteries. This brand new chemistry of battery allows for the most compact cells available. Li-Poly batteries are extremely light and thin and allow the most battery life for the size. Lithium Polymer cellular batteries share all of the benefits of Li-ION batteries but will last over twice as long.

Nickel Metal Hydride Batteries (NiMH)

Nickel Metal Hydride Batteries (NiMH) were introduced in the early 1990's as an improvement over older chemistries like Nickel Cadmium (NiCd). Although they may have a very slight memory effect, NiMH batteries are much more reliable than previous chemistries. Compared to a NiCd battery of equal size, a NiMH battery will run for 30-40% longer on each charge. NiMH batteries can be recharged 60% in just 15 minutes using a car charger, an obvious asset for motorists. The unique NiMH chemistry packs much more power than NiCd. Additionally, NiMH batteries often have twice the lifespan of NiCds. Batteries4less.com carries an extensive line of Nickel Metal Hydride batteries.

Nickel Cadmium Batteries (NiCd)

Nickel Cadmium Batteries (NiCd) are manufactured using older technology and suffer from memory effect. They must be completely discharged before recharging to avoid incurring damage to the battery. This discharge procedure can add extra time to the overall charging process. The memory effect inherent in all NiCd batteries reduces the battery's overall capacity, run time, and life span. NiCd batteries are being slowly phased out and replaced by NiMH and LiION. Also, the "nickel cadmium" used in NiCd batteries is highly toxic to the environment. Thus, it is difficult to responsibly dispose of NiCd batteries.

Charging your Nickel Cadmium (Ni-Cad) batteries. NiCd batteries must be fully charged then fully discharged at least every 2-3 weeks to prevent memory effect. When not in use NiCd batteries lose 1% of their charge per day and will completely self discharge if left dormant. Store separate from tool itself. Do not leave in the charger when fully charged.

Memory Effect

The term "memory" in reference to batteries means the battery "remembers" its usual discharge point and superficially "needs" a charge whenever it hits that point. In other words, if you have a NiCad that always gets discharged to only 50% of its capacity, it will eventually not run below that 50% mark if you ever wanted to discharge it to a lower point.

Batteries4less.com is committed to offering superior cellphone batteries * to our customers. NiCd batteries and their inherent memory effect generate many problems and customer complaints. In most cases their charge-holding capacity greatly declines or they burn out and die well in advance of their normal life expectancy. For these reasons, we no longer sell NiCd batteries or support NiCd technology. Instead, we offer NiMH and LiION replacement batteries for existing NiCd models. At batteries4less.com, we exclusively promote Nickel Metal Hydride, Lithium Ion and now Lithium Polymer as the preferred cellphone battery technologies for mobile professionals worldwide.

* All products mentioned above are after-market/non-OEM unless otherwise specified.
* All brand names and trademarks are properties of their respective owners. Batteries4less.com does not assume or imply ownership of these brand names and trademarks.

Battery Recycling Battery Recycling
Batteries4less.com is committed to recycling our rechargeable batteries and encouraging our customers to do the same. For proper disposal of your old battery, you should return it to the original place of purchase or to a collection center. You can also contact the local Department of Household Hazardous in your state. Your local Town Hall is also a good place to inquire. Please go to
RBRC
(www.rbrc.com) for a drop off center near you or send your battery back to us at:

batteries4less.com
Attn: Recycling Program
1020 Whispering Pines Suite F
Grass Valley, CA 95945


Click here for more
handy cell phone battery care tips provided by the RBRC at http://www.rbrc.com/consumer/tips.html.

Standby and Talk Times:
Please refer to our Standby and Talk Time information page.

How to maximize the life of your cell phone battery --

There are several things you can do to maximize the useful life of your battery: Dirty battery contacts are the number one source of charging problems. Clean the battery contacts with alcohol and a cotton swab from time to time. Make sure no cotton is left on the contact points. Don't leave your rechargeable batteries dormant for extended periods. Take them for a "spin around the block" every so often. Even if you use AC power most of the time; use the battery periodically to keep it fresh and healthy. Unplug your AC adapter if you are not using your cellphone. Batteries that sit idle for extended periods of time without charging begin to lose their ability to hold a charge and will self-discharge, so remember to charge them again before use. Always store batteries in a cool, dry place away from heat and metal objects.

Initial Charge Cycle --

New cell phone batteries must be trickle charged (slow charged) prior to their first use and for the first several uses. As all of our batteries are new, they are uncharged. All batteries require a "break-in" period, so don't be alarmed if your battery doesn't hold a full charge right away. A new battery may show false full charge as indicated on your phone or charger. Also the battery may not power up the phone because of low voltage. For the First Three Cycles, please make sure to charge the battery fully and drain it fully before recharging. This will properly condition the battery and will ensure that it will operate at its maximum capacity. This is recommended for all cellular phone batteries. You can discharge most portable phones by unplugging the AC adapter and leaving it turned on until completely discharged. Remember - "Take care of your Cell Phone Battery and your Phone Battery will take care of you."

Note: mAh stands for "milli Amp hours" and is the measurement of a battery's storage capacity.



Laptop Battery Guide

Calibrating your Laptop's Battery for Optimal Performance

A Laptop Battery has an internal microprocessor that provides an estimate of the amount of charge remaining in the battery as it chargers and discharges. The battery needs to be recalibrated from time to time, to keep the onscreen battery time and percent accurate. You should perform this procedure when you first use your battery, and then every few months afterward.

    1. Set up power management: Right-click on an empty area in your desktop, and choose "Properties." Set your "Running on Batteries" settings to maximum battery life.
    2. Run the computer battery down. To calibrate the battery, run the computer on battery power until it shuts down automatically.
    3. Plug the computer in and charge fully. Charge the computer back up to 100%. The battery will now be calibrated.

A new battery, or a battery that has not been used for a prolonged period of time, will require three to four charge/discharge cycles to work at optimum efficiency and performance. This is simply due to the mechanics of the lithium-ion technology that the battery is based on.

Tip: When the battery reaches a level of 0% reported charge remaining, the computer is forced into sleep mode. Although it appears to be off, the computer is actually drawing a little bit of power to keep open documents and programs in memory. For this reason, the battery actually keeps a reserve of charge beyond "empty" to maintain this mode of the computer for a period of time. When the battery is finally truly empty, the computer will be forced off, and open unsaved documents will be lost.

Storing Your New Battery

Batteries may be damaged if stored for prolonged periods of time with a closed circuit. If the battery will not be in use for a month or longer, it is highly recommended that the battery be stored separate from the computer, with nothing touching the electrical contacts. Further, it is recommended that an unused battery be stored with a 60% to 80% charge, in a cool dry place, protected from dust and dirt. A charged battery naturally loses its stored charge over time, even sitting not connected.

Battery Safety

A laptop battery is an electrical device, and must be treated with the same care as any other electrical device. Do not short-circuit the battery, as this may cause severe permanent damage to the battery. Do not drop, hit, or otherwise abuse the battery. Do not expose the battery to fire and extreme heat, or attempt to incinerate the battery. Extreme heat may cause the battery to explode. Do not attempt to open, disassemble, or repair the battery. Do not puncture the battery. The chemicals in the battery are corrosive. Do not expose the battery to moisture, water, or any liquid.

Clean battery only with a dry, lint-free cloth.

Frequently Asked Questions

Q: How long will the battery run in my laptop before needing to re-charge?
A: Battery run-time is dependent on the configuration of your computer. This can vary even between two computers of the same model. Factors such as screen size (a bigger screen uses more power), DVD drive type, Wi-Fi, brightness, and more, all affect your battery life. The best thing to do is to think back to when your computer was new. How long did the original battery last when you first got it? Then, compare the "cell count" of your old battery to the "cell count" of a new battery. If they are the same, the battery will last the same. If there are more cells, judge accordingly.

Q: Why does the battery run down when I'm not using my computer?
A: Several things affect the stored energy in a battery. If it's connected to your computer, your computer may be in "sleep" mode. This mode draws a small amount of power from the battery to save open documents and programs in memory. Even if completely disconnected, however, the nature of the technology in a lithium-ion battery means that it will lose some charge naturally over time. This phenomenon is called "self-consumption."

Q: Should I remove the battery when I'm using the AC adapter?
A: No. A lithium-ion battery is not affected by being plugged into a laptop while the laptop is on AC power. Once the battery is charged, the computer will stop charging it.

Q: Will the battery lifetime decrease if I put it on charge when it's not fully discharged?
A: No. This is a common misconception. Old-style "Ni-Cad" batteries were affected by the "memory effect," but your Lithium-ion battery is not. You calculate battery lifetime for a lithium-ion battery using full charge cycles. If a battery is only used 50% and then recharged, that only counts as a half of a cycle. Generally speaking, the battery life cycle should be about 300 charges in total, no matter if you use all 300 charges in a row, or split it up between partial charges.

Q: The battery capacity on my computer shows 0%, even after charging for hours! When I unplug my computer, it just turns off! What should I do?
A: Ensure that the battery is properly connected in your computer. Make sure it's pushed all the way in, so the contacts are connected. Remember your computer is made of plastic, and the computer gets very warm while in use. This causes the plastic bottom of your laptop to "bend" or "warp" slightly over time, along with your original battery. The new battery is brand-new, so the plastic is still perfect. This can make the initial connection of the new battery a little tight.

Q: My battery does not charge, and I'm sure it's connected properly!
A: Often times, this can be corrected with a very simple, very fast software update from your computer manufacturer. Simply go the manufacturer's website, go to the "Support" or "Drivers and Downloads" section, and find the page for your particular model. Then, download the free update called "BIOS" and run it. Restart your machine, and the battery should function normally. If not, contact us.

Q: I have a Dell laptop, and it says "the battery is not compatible with this computer model, please put in a Dell battery," and the indicator light is blinking. What is the problem?
A: The particular battery is not properly compatible. Contact us for replacement.

Q: My laptop immediately shuts down when I put the battery in, but it works when the battery is removed. What's the problem?
A: This is very rare. Check the connector on your computer where the battery goes for bent or missing pins. If there are none broken, then the battery is dead.

Q: When my battery is low, it just shuts down with no warning. It does not go to "Sleep" or "Hibernate" mode. This happened several times, and now it only lasts for a few minutes, fully charged! What's the problem?
A: Check your laptop's power management settings. Also, see the earlier section about calibrating your battery. If this does not solve, see the previous reply about updating the BIOS. If the problem persists, contact us.

Q: I let my battery charge for hours, and it only went up a few percent (for instance, 30%). What's the problem?
A: See the answer to the previous question. If the problem persists, contact us.

Q: I only had the battery charging for a short while (10 minutes, for example), and it's already at 100%! What's the problem?
A: See the answer to the previous question. If the problem persists, contact us.


Questions - Please contact us with any questions you may have or phone a member of our knowledgeable sales staff at 800-300-9993.
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