Welcome to PhantomPilots.com

Sign up for a weekly email of the latest drone news & information

battery storage what to do

Discussion in 'Phantom 2 Vision Discussion' started by PhantomDave, Jan 8, 2014.

  1. PhantomDave

    Joined:
    Jan 2, 2014
    Messages:
    130
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Chaska, MN
    if this has been covered in the past, I apologize. How long can I store my battery for the p2v fully charged before it goes bad? im use to the normal r c batteries that can't be stored real long before they get fat.
    Can I fully charge it and just leave it turned off for days? what is the best practice?
     
  2. Pull_Up

    Joined:
    Nov 5, 2013
    Messages:
    3,684
    Likes Received:
    48
    Location:
    South Oxfordshire, UK
    Most old hands with RC flight lipos I've seen talk about it don't like to keep lipos stored with full charge for much longer than about a week. Longer than that received wisdom seems to be to store them at 40-50% (2 greens on ours) and even in the fridge if they are going to be out of action for months.

    I've been grounded by bad weather for almost three weeks. Beginning of this week I ran down both batteries to storage charge (Vision outside, props off, manual mode, 50% throttle). I might get out this Friday/weekend, or it might be another week yet and I wasn't comfortable storing them at near full charge with that potential lay off. So my personal limit is 2 weeks. Others I have seen won't leave them more than 2 or three days - but there has to be a compromise between maxing battery life and actually being ready to take advantage of whatever weather window you get!

    Oh and I can report that after running down (which took ages with no load on the motors, there's a lot of juice in those batteries) the motors and ESCs weren't even warm - so in a cool ambient temperature without a big load everything runs nice and cool.
     
    dirkclod likes this.
  3. PhantomDave

    Joined:
    Jan 2, 2014
    Messages:
    130
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Chaska, MN
    Awesome, thanks for your help. It has been below zero here for weeks, finally getting some warm weather tomorrow. Can't wait to fly, so far I have only been able to fly it in my living room. The dogs don't like it much.. :lol:
     
  4. Pull_Up

    Joined:
    Nov 5, 2013
    Messages:
    3,684
    Likes Received:
    48
    Location:
    South Oxfordshire, UK
    Not surprised - quite a downdraft from those big props! I'm not sure if it will reduce your need for dusting the room, or increase it...
     
    dirkclod likes this.
  5. ted35

    Joined:
    Apr 7, 2013
    Messages:
    33
    Likes Received:
    1

    Generally LiPos like about 3.8 volts per cell for storage. The Vision battery is 3 cell therefore 11.4v. Using the onboard telemetry as a volt meter I always run my battery down to about 43% (11.4v) on the last flight of the day. It's not exact but close enough. Lipos don't like two things when it comes to storage... a full charge and heat. If it's going to be an extended period of time before I can fly again (I live in Seattle so it only rains for about 6 months..sarc) I keep the batteries in a ziplock bag in the fridge. Why a ziplock? That way condensation won't form when I take the batteries out of the fridge to warm up to ambient temp.

    Here's a quote from http://www.rchelicopterfun.com/rc-lipo-batteries.html


    "For optimum battery life, store your RC LiPo batteries at room temperature and at about 40-60% charged. That equates to around 3.85 volts per cell (open terminal resting voltage). The actual storage range is likely a little broader than this (I have heard some say numbers as high as 20-80% is fine, but since computerized chargers set the storage charge at 50% (3.85 volts per cell) that's what I recommend and what I follow myself.

    You can actually extend the fully charged storage time from days to weeks by storing your batteries in the fridge (not freezer) close to 0 degrees Celsius (32F). I have started doing this with my smaller packs seeing that I will often find myself wanting to go flying with little lead time and it is very convenient having packs all ready fully charged.

    If you do store your fully charged LiPo's in the fridge, pack them in a zip-lock freezer bag and squeeze out all the air before sealing the bag. This will prevent condensation forming on the battery packs when you take them out of the fridge as they warm up. You should allow the LiPo pack to warm up after removing from the fridge before using it of course.

    I only store in cold temps if I know I will be flying within a 2-3 week time frame. Once winter hits and I know my flying days will be limited, I once again store at 50% charge @ room temp. It wouldn't hurt to store at 50% charge capacity in the fridge all the time either; but it takes up precious beer chillin' real estate (priorities you know)."
     
  6. jonesmcgee

    Joined:
    Jun 18, 2014
    Messages:
    1
    Likes Received:
    0
    Based on the info above would you advise not to fly my phantom?

    Can I fly it but just for a limited time? What type of results will I get?

    They've been fully charged for about a week or so, ( wanted to fly them but never got the chance ) and I'm thinking of flying tonight.....
     
  7. ProfessorStein

    Joined:
    Jun 20, 2014
    Messages:
    1,136
    Likes Received:
    3
    Location:
    Portland, OR
    Nah, your Phantom will be fine, jones.

    The life of a LiPo battery begins degrading the second it's formed at the factory. If you store it improperly, it just speeds up the process. But the battery is still as safe as it would've been had the degradation occurred naturally.

    After a week of storage at full charge, it's unlikely that you'll notice much of a degradation (it's not like you'll only get 10 minutes of flight time, where you used to get 20). Your Phantom is still going to get all the power it needs during flight (LiPo's are really good at giving peak performance right up to the end)... just that, as your battery degrades, those flights will start to get shorter, faster.
     
  8. Protocrash

    Joined:
    Aug 6, 2015
    Messages:
    34
    Likes Received:
    5
    Hey guys - as professor Stein says storing at full charge degrades LiPos faster. It doesn't destroy them though. For me even the intelligent batteries auto-discharge (which takes 3 days minimum) wasn't fast enough (after years into RC I'm pretty obsessive about LiPo maintenance). So I created a little gadget to quickly discharge Phantom 2 and 3 batteries down to ~60%. If you're interested more info at Phantom Angel

     
    #8 Protocrash, Aug 18, 2015
    Last edited: Mar 3, 2016
  9. Protocrash

    Joined:
    Aug 6, 2015
    Messages:
    34
    Likes Received:
    5
    Hi guys,

    Since launching the Phantom Angel a couple of months ago I've had loads of discussions with Phantom pilots about their batteries.
    What I saw was that the majority of new pilots were not aware of standard LiPo practices and were surprised and grateful when I shared some of what I've learnt over the years.

    So, with that in mind, I've created a concise, newbie-friendly guide to all things LiPo. If you don't know how to store your battiers, how to keep them from exploding or how to tell your watts from your amps, this guide's for you :)

    Top tips for happy Phantom batteries

    Hope you find it useful and please do send over any and all thoughts and comments.

    Proto
     
  10. Mark The Droner

    Joined:
    Aug 26, 2015
    Messages:
    4,016
    Likes Received:
    1,173
    Location:
    Brookeville, MD, USA
    I read somewhere that our Lipos will automatically begin to slowly discharge if they are fully charged and left ten days without being used. This is part of the smart battery.
     
  11. Protocrash

    Joined:
    Aug 6, 2015
    Messages:
    34
    Likes Received:
    5
    Hi Mark,

    Thats correct. The newer DJI batts self-discharge. By default this starts after 10 days but can be adjusted to start after 1 day. The issue I find is that it takes a full two days after that to actually reach a good storage level which means a minimum of 3 days at higher than optimal charge. As I'm pretty **** with my LiPos I saw the need to be able to discharge right after I return from the field - hence the Angel :)
     
  12. Mark The Droner

    Joined:
    Aug 26, 2015
    Messages:
    4,016
    Likes Received:
    1,173
    Location:
    Brookeville, MD, USA
    Hey Proto,

    Nothing wrong about being **** about your lipos! I am too, at least somewhat. As I was thinking about buying a Phantom last August, I saw Drone Camp RC's battery vid recommending 10-10 break in (Ten minute flight ten times). He says in there that this is how professionals break in their lipos. I bought extra batteries in advance, and I used this 10-10 method for my three new batteries (that's 30 flights for only 10 minutes each). It was a bit painful because I wanted to fly longer, but I got through it.

    You don't mention this anywhere in your battery care link. Can you comment?

    Also, are you sure we can adjust the 10 day discharge delay on a Vision battery? I've heard it can be done on an Inspire battery, but I don't know how to do it on my Vision batteries.

    Thanks very much.
     
  13. Protocrash

    Joined:
    Aug 6, 2015
    Messages:
    34
    Likes Received:
    5
    Hey Marknmd,

    Regarding breaking in LiPos - there are various rumours out there that its a good idea but in all my experience and research I have found no credible sources on this matter. I'll also asked some of the people I consider experts in the field and they concur.

    All the best
     
  14. Mark The Droner

    Joined:
    Aug 26, 2015
    Messages:
    4,016
    Likes Received:
    1,173
    Location:
    Brookeville, MD, USA
    I guess the logic is we don't want to stress out the new battery so early in its young life. But who knows?

    THANKS