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Telephones sometimes don't have a replaceable battery, so how do you extend the life and ability to hold a charge of a rechargeable battery in one?

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Cell phone batteries (and everything else nowadays) uses Lithium Ion batteries. Unlike previous generations, these don't have a "memory" effect, so there's no need to completely discharge them all the way and then recharge them. In fact, frequently adding small amounts of charge (like taking it on and off a wireless charger) is a recommended use case.

What does destroy these batteries is charging to 100%. As you can see in the below chart, charging from 50 to 100% repeatedly is much worse than charging from 25% to 75%

enter image description here

Source: https://www.researchgate.net/publication/303890624_Modeling_of_Lithium-Ion_Battery_Degradation_for_Cell_Life_Assessment

It's that final charge above 90% that cuts the life of your battery. So if your phone is charging and reaches 90%, don't wait that last little bit before taking it off the charger.

Another fun tip. Never charge a cold battery. If you try to charge a battery below 0 degrees Celsius (32 degrees Fahrenheit), you can cause crystals to grow which will destroy it. So next time you come in out of the cold, wait a bit before charging.

You can read more about battery preservation techniques in this article: https://batteryuniversity.com/learn/article/how_to_prolong_lithium_based_batteries

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2

Most rechargable batteries can have their life extended by following a few common rules. Most batteries tend to wear out when used when they are very cold or very hot. They also wear out after a certain number of discharges, so using less power over time helps the battery last longer.

The life of a battery also depends partially on the type of battery. NiCad batteries tend to "remember" charge levels, so they need to be discharged completely now and then or they won't hold a full charge. Lithium batteries should never be discharged without immediately charging them up again, and will die after a certain number of time due to their internal chemistry.

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  • Very few devices have NiCd batteries any more; certainly no phones without replaceable batteries. All phones made in the past five years have been lithium-ion powered, as far as I'm aware. – Zeiss Ikon Oct 14 '16 at 11:09
  • @ZeissIkon: Since NiCad batteries are a form of rechargeable battery, I included them to answer the OP's question as completely as possible. He could have phrased it as "How to extend the lifetime of a lithium battery" and I would left a different answer. – Mark Ripley Oct 14 '16 at 11:17
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Most batteries today are lithium based. Common rule is not to overcharge or discharge the battery below certain level.

Chargers and appliances usually are designed in a way which does not allow over charging or draining the battery completely.

The battery charge can vary depending on the temperature. So if you charge a battery on clod and then move it on hot it will become overcharged. Also if you discharge completely the battery while it is hot and then move it to cold place, the charge may fall below critical minimum.

What you should not do:

  • When the battery is discharged, don't put the phone in cold place because the charge level will fall below critical
  • And don't put the phone on hot place when it is fully charged, because the battery will become overcharged
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To extend the lifetime of your rechargeable battery: - Use a powerfull charger, avoid the charge thru the USB connector of a PC - Never goes under 20% - A quick charge is always better - 80% of charge in most cases is enough for a day (The last 20% are not so easy to fulfill) - Never put your phone in a cold or hot place, be carefull to the sunrays directly on it - Never use your phone during the charge

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Sometimes you can put them in the freezer and keep them cool as much as possible. Rechargeable batteries seem to walk off from my house,so I won't buy anymore.

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  • 2
    This answer should have a credible reference that backs up the claim that freezing batteries will extend their life. – dwjohnston Oct 14 '16 at 9:51
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    From my understanding of battery construction, this is just wrong. Freezing the electrolyte will damage batteries of any chemistry type. – Zeiss Ikon Oct 14 '16 at 11:10
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    @ZeissIkon: Cooler temperatures such as refrigeration will slow decomposition of the chemical breakdown over time in battery cells (while storing them), but freezing may indeed damage them. Also, cold batteries don't produce as much current as room temperature batteries, so they should not be charged or used until warmed up again. – Mark Ripley Oct 14 '16 at 11:23

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