Welcome to PhantomPilots.com

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

trickle charging the battery

Discussion in 'Phantom 2 Vision + Discussion' started by aristosv, Oct 18, 2014.

  1. aristosv

    Joined:
    May 19, 2014
    Messages:
    92
    Likes Received:
    0
    So I fly the phantom on saturdays and charge the batteries the same day, when i'm finished. The problem is that the batteries stay there for a week until next saturday when i fly the phantom again.

    When i use the batteries again next saturday, they are not fully charged. They could be on 95% or even less. Especially when i need some time for calibration, or until the phone connects to the phantom camera, or if i need some time to change the camera settings, the battery could go as low as 90% before i even begin to fly the phantom.

    And as you may have noticed, it the battery does not go lower than a specific percentage (perhaps 85% or 90%), the DJI charger wont even start charging it.

    So how can I maintain a 100% charge on the battery? I know that regular hobbyist chargers can trickle charge any battery and maintain it for as long as it takes. But the DJI charger does not.

    Any suggestions on how to resolve this issue? Please dont tell me to charge the batteries on Friday :)
     
  2. N017RW

    Joined:
    May 2, 2014
    Messages:
    6,242
    Likes Received:
    1,614
    Location:
    Palm Beach Co.- FL
    PLEASE take the time to Google or YouTube LiPo Battery Care or similar.

    No need to try and repost what has already been done well before.

    Short story: LiPos require a unique charging profile and have some special instruction to properly use, store, and maintain as compared to other batteries you may have used before.
     
  3. aristosv

    Joined:
    May 19, 2014
    Messages:
    92
    Likes Received:
    0
    Did you even read my question?
     
  4. DBS

    DBS

    Joined:
    Apr 6, 2014
    Messages:
    1,187
    Likes Received:
    163
    Location:
    Ft. Pierce, Florida
    Before you go out... connect to charger... plug in.. then turn on the battery like you do when you're gonna fly... that will top it off for a 100% start level
     
  5. sergekouper

    Joined:
    Apr 20, 2014
    Messages:
    752
    Likes Received:
    128
    Location:
    London UK
    Charge your batteries before using them. Not a week before (but that's me)
     
  6. aristosv

    Joined:
    May 19, 2014
    Messages:
    92
    Likes Received:
    0
    DBS. Thank you! Thats the answer i was looking for. Good tip!
     
  7. brorex

    Joined:
    Jun 18, 2014
    Messages:
    193
    Likes Received:
    0
    I charge mine after using it. So that if I want to fly they are there ready to fly. Sometimes it mag be a week or 2 before I fly. As DBS said turn the battery on and it will top off to 100%
     
  8. N017RW

    Joined:
    May 2, 2014
    Messages:
    6,242
    Likes Received:
    1,614
    Location:
    Palm Beach Co.- FL
    The nature of your question indicated the lack of basic undersatnding of LiPos. No problem as none of us was born with this knowledge.
    We learn, among other ways, from others by research or on forums like this.
    I believe in showing people where to find information rather than just 'spoon feed'.
    I gave you good advice, what you do with it is up to you and not a reflection on me or my actions.
     
  9. sergekouper

    Joined:
    Apr 20, 2014
    Messages:
    752
    Likes Received:
    128
    Location:
    London UK
    It is known that the lipos should not be stored with more than 50 to 70% of the charge.
     
  10. phantomguy

    Joined:
    Mar 26, 2014
    Messages:
    349
    Likes Received:
    2
    Sergekouper is 100% correct and inline with what DJIs manual states with regards to battery care.
     
  11. Dirty Bird

    Joined:
    Apr 15, 2014
    Messages:
    0
    Likes Received:
    9
    Location:
    Glen Burnie, MD - USA
    This is true, however, it is relative to how long you plan to store them. In my experience with Li-Pos, a week or two does not appear to cause any harm. Were I storing them for a month or more, I would definitely agree with storing them at 40-60% charge.
     
  12. Panamon Creel

    Joined:
    Jul 31, 2014
    Messages:
    229
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Central Mexico
    A week or two of storage at 100% charge at room temp is still causing increased "aging" of a LiPo over storage at approx. 50% charge during the same time period but it likely won't be noticed much in the overall life as long it's not done often. The aging process can be reduced ( but not eliminated ) by lowering the storage temperature at any charge level.
     
  13. aristosv

    Joined:
    May 19, 2014
    Messages:
    92
    Likes Received:
    0
    This is all good advice. But in reality, how many people bother using their batteries and then charging them to 50%-70%, and then charging them again before each flight? How long can you keep this up? Imagine if you have 4 or 5 batteries. And again, in reality, if a battery's life span is for example one year, how much will its life be extended if you do perform this process? One, two, four months?
     
  14. N017RW

    Joined:
    May 2, 2014
    Messages:
    6,242
    Likes Received:
    1,614
    Location:
    Palm Beach Co.- FL
    Having used LiPos for about 8 years.
    They are not hard to maintain as recommended when used as singular component when combined with a balancing, programmable, charger. It's a breeze.

    The adding of the 'intelligent' portion by DJI for use by the masses has reduced the ease and convenience.
     
  15. Panamon Creel

    Joined:
    Jul 31, 2014
    Messages:
    229
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Central Mexico
    IMO it all depends the way you use your batteries. The item that causes the most "aging" for a LiPo with normal and correct use is actually using it so with ever discharge and charge cycle your battery loses some capacity. The more you discharge it the higher the capacity loss for that cycle, therefore if you fly often and cycle your batteries often you won't notice much impact on the life span with the occasional temporary storage at full charge.
    Also note that the storage charge at 50-70% is the ideal level for long term storage but you can also leave them at a lower discharge level like around 30% as long as it is not for too long. Capacity loss is still far lower at that charge level vs. being fully charged but it's not recommended for long term storage since self discharge could cause the cells to go down to damage causing voltage level.
    In the end each individual will do it the way they think is right or convenient to them
     
  16. justin00

    Joined:
    Sep 19, 2014
    Messages:
    1,143
    Likes Received:
    25
    Location:
    Australia
    Hmm I tried that.. .plugged in charger, plugged in battery.. doesn't turn on as its like 98%.. so I pressed button, then pressed/held button for a sec or two and it did the things where the bars go up to indicate the level of charge (the normal start procedure when battery is in Phantom). Anyways all 4 green's stay lit up for maybe 5 or so minutes then then the battery turns off. The battery doesn't seem to indicate its charging by cycling through all the green/"charged" leds, one after another (except at initial turn on) it just stays on 4 greens as I said..
    Is that correct ?? When its above 85% and you do this trick to charge should it look like it looks when its charging normally ? i.e cycling through the greens one after another for the charge duration ??

    Hope you get what I mean.

    Thanks :)

     
  17. DBS

    DBS

    Joined:
    Apr 6, 2014
    Messages:
    1,187
    Likes Received:
    163
    Location:
    Ft. Pierce, Florida
    At 98% , you're right on the edge... The Vision app may report 98% but the charger inside the battery might see that as "full" so it doesn't attempt a charge... These smart battery boards inside the battery are fairly cheap and mass produced so there are some variables there... I have one battery that stops charging when it hits 12.55 volts ... I have another battery that stops charging when it hits 12.47 volts ... not ideal when you want max flight time but then again not too much different in voltage (.08 volts)

    If it won't top off from 98% you may have to install it in the Phantom and drain it a bit more to coax the charger board into topping it off... :ugeek:

    just another one of those things I don't like about this smart battery setup... I have a battery that has the potential to store 12.6 volts and none of them do... they all stop charging just shy of that mark and there's nothing you can do about that because each internal charger board has it's own "calibration" or whatever you wanna call it...

    Working on my own solution now where I can use my own 3S batteries and my own accucell charger and be done with these "smart" bricks
     
  18. aartsf

    Joined:
    Sep 23, 2014
    Messages:
    346
    Likes Received:
    3
    Non the less, charging them on ftiday is the besr advice for you. [SMILING FACE WITH OPEN MOUTH AND TIGHTLY-CLOSED EYES][SMILING FACE WITH SMILING EYES]
     
  19. happydays

    Joined:
    Jul 5, 2013
    Messages:
    1,846
    Likes Received:
    655
    Location:
    Warrenpoint, Ireland
    So what do you lot do if (like happened to me this weekend) I charged up on Saturday, two batteries and as I was about to leave home, the rain started. Then I couldn't get out on Sunday, so today I have two 100% charged up units that I won't be able to fly until next weekend. Do you drain them?
     
  20. N017RW

    Joined:
    May 2, 2014
    Messages:
    6,242
    Likes Received:
    1,614
    Location:
    Palm Beach Co.- FL
    The LiPo advice and recommendations are all over the place. I have always tried to follow the general guidelines for discharge amounts and storage levels.

    But rather than go through all of that let's look at DJI's recent description of their latest battery firmware update.

    Basically they have said: After 10 continuous days of non-use they are supposed to go into a self-discharge mode wherein it could take up to two days to arrive at 50% charge or so.

    So with that in mind you probably will have no issues. But this is just one man's advice/opinion.
     
    kawakid likes this.