Maximizing Battery Life
While recent advances in battery technology have tremendously increased cell phone standby and talk time capabilities, even the strongest battery will eventually run out of power and need to be recharged. Discovering a dead battery when you need to your cell phone is a situation most of us can avoid by practicing a few simple usage and recharging habits.
- Fully discharge your battery before recharging
The oldest type of battery, Nickel-Cadmium (NiCad), needs to be recharged carefully. Make sure that NiCad batteries are completely discharged, or "empty," before recharging to avoid what is known as "memory effect." This is a condition in which your battery "forgets" its full charge capacity. "Memory effect" not only decreases the amount of power you receive per charge, but also shortens total battery life over the long term.
"Memory effect" happens to a much lesser extent with the more recently developed Nickel-Metal Hydrate (NiMH) batteries, but it's still wise to periodically discharge fully before recharging, especially the first few times with brand new batteries.
- Upgrade to Lithium-ion
The newest battery technology, the Lithium-Ion (LiON), provides longer life than nickel-based batteries and is not susceptible to "memory effect." That means you can randomly recharge LiON batteries without jeopardizing performance. However, when you are "breaking in" a new LiON battery, it's still a good idea to fully discharge it the first few times. Check to see if a LiON battery is available for your phone through our accessories catalog.
- Do not overcharge your battery
With all types of batteries, be sure not to charge your battery much longer than what is specified by the manufacturer. Overcharging your battery "boils" its cells and affects long term performance.
- Consider a desktop recharger/conditioner
Most desktop recharger/conditioners will completely discharge (i.e. "condition") your battery before charging. Special temperature sensors will also shut off the charge once complete to prevent overcharging. Some also include displays that can tell you when the battery will be fully charged. To view rechargers and conditioners available for your phone, visit our accessories catalog.
- Invest in an adapter if you use the phone in your car
As you might have guessed, cigarette lighter adapters plug into the lighter port of your car. These adapters charge your battery even while your phone is in use. This accessory is a must-have if you use your phone in the car a great deal. (LetsTalk.com offers a wide variety of cigarette lighter adapters in our catalog!)
- Keep an eye on your battery level.
Most wireless phones have a battery level indicator on the display indicating how much power is available. Particularly if you travel frequently, are in a remote area, or keep your phone on hand for emergency purposes, it is important not to take chances with the battery level. Remember that entering numbers in the phone's memory, adjusting the phone's settings, and accessing features such as call history also tap battery power.