How do I care for my battery?
There are some things you can do that will enable you to get the maximum usefulness from your battery and some things to definately not do. Here is the list:
1) Your battery will arrive discharged and should be charged according to your device's manual before use. Before achieving maximum capacity the battery will need to be fully charged and discharged about five times.
2) All batteries will lose their charge over periods of inactivity. If you will not be using your device for an extended time you should remove the battery and store it seperately. Then when you are ready to use your device you will need to charge the battery again to get the maximum charge.
3) Many rechargeable batteries need to be fully discharged and charged about twice a month. If you don't discharge and charge the batteries on a regular basis it may shorten the battery's life. The exception to this is Lithium-ion (Li-ion) batteries which are used in the most modern devices. If your battery is Lithium-ion it does not require conditioning but it can lose its charge over time so may need to be charged after a long period of inactivity.
4) Do not expose the battery to fire.
5) Do not expose the battery to water.
6) Do not short circuit the battery.
7) Do not try to take the battery apart or put the battery under physical stress.
What are the different rechargeable battery types?
There are 3 types of rechargeable batteries used in consumer electronics:
1) Li-ion: The newest battery design type is called Lithium-ion (Li-ion). Li-ion batteries have two distinct advantages over the previous design types: they hold more charge for the same weight and they don't suffer from "memory effect".
2) NiMH: The generation of batteries preceeding Li-ion were made using Nickel Metal Hydride (NiMH) chemistry. NiMH batteries have 3advantages over the previous technology: they hold about double the charge, they contain no heavy metals so are much more environmentally friendly and they have a less pronounced "memory effect".
3) NiCad: Nickel Cadmium (NiCad) is the oldest battery technology in use today. This design is really only used in older devices and suffers from low capacity, environmental problems and a serious "memory effect".
What is "memory effect"?
"Memory effect" describes the phenomenon that some batteries have of "forgetting' some of its useful capacity. When it happens the battery will not discharge fully so you will need to recharge the battery more frequently. To avoid "memory effect" fully discharge and charge your NiMH and NiCad batteries twice a month.
How long will my battery last?
This depends on the chemistry and your usage of the battery. On average the batteries made today will last about 500 charge-discharge cycles. Newer designs will last for more cycles than the older designs.
What is capacity?
Capacity is the measure of how large of a charge a battery can hold. In small device batteries it is typically given in miliamp-hours, or mAh. Batteries with higher mAh capacity will power your device longer than one with a lower mAh capacity.
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