Cell Phone Battery FAQs

All cell phones come equipped with either a nickel cadmium (NiCad), a nickel metal hydride (NiMH), or a lithium ion (LiIon) battery. But most people don’t think much about them until their cell phones die. The following frequently asked questions and answers will help you quickly understand the types of batteries available and how to get the most life out of them.

What kinds of batteries are available?

There are three main types of batteries:

  1. NiCad batteries have the shortest usage times and are prone to memory effect, which occurs when batteries are recharged before they have been fully discharged.
  2. NiMH batteries are typically less bulky than NiCad batteries and hold a charge 50 percent to 100 percent longer than NiCads. While they do not have the recharging problems that plague NiCad batteries, they can fade in extreme temperatures.
  3. LiIon batteries offer the longest battery life in the smallest package. They can provide up to five hours of talk time. LiIon batteries are much smaller than NiCad batteries and don’t experience the same recharging problems. However, this power comes at a cost — LiIon batteries are more expensive than other types.

How can I prevent memory effect?

To prevent memory effect, recharge your batteries only after you have completely drained them. That means leaving your phone turned on until the batteries are dead. It’s also important not to overcharge the battery, so follow the manufacturer’s instructions. A conditioning recharger can sometimes bring life back to older NiCads.

Should I upgrade my battery?

Depending on your phone usage and personal preferences, you might want to consider upgrading to a different type of battery if one is available.

How long does it take to charge a cell phone battery?

It depends on the battery and charger. Some batteries take 10 to 24 hours to charge, but most will recharge in 1 to 2 hours. For more information on your battery-charging requirements, refer to your cell phone or battery-charger manual, or contact the manufacturer.

Why won’t my battery hold a charge?

Overcharging a battery or storing it at extremely high or low temperatures can wear it out. Even properly maintained and charged batteries eventually lose the ability to hold a charge.

How many times can I charge the batteries?

The average battery can be recharged 200 to 400 times.

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