Service batteries: the choice of the charger (Part 1)

In the last article we talked about deciphering the date of manufacture, use and storage conditions of storage Battery, size AA/AAA. Today we'll talk about how to maintain NiMH rechargeable batteries, how to prolong battery life, which of today's chargers, the most efficient service in NiMH batteries.

NiMH batarey

Service penlight battery does not require much time and money, the main thing - to know how to do it, to squeeze out of the battery all possible potential inherent in them by the manufacturer. Serving the nickel-metal hydride batteries, it is important to know, what the charge current should be set for a specific battery charger which must be used for effective and safe battery charging. In this article, I will try to answer in detail all of the above questions, and I'll start with the main issue - selection charger.

Select Charger - types and working principles of memory

Look at the photo below. Here are the three most popular types of chargers, radically differing mode of operation, if any of them are your memories? Most likely, among the presented three types of chargers is similar to yours... If so, you will be interested to know some details about your charger. But first, let's look at the principle of of each of the three types of memory, after which we will draw conclusions.

Select Charger

Consider the first type - charger with timer (slow/normal charge), pictured above - is the memory VARTA. Charges of this type operate in the following manner: - battery charginglasts a certain amount of time, eg 12 hours, after which, the charger terminates the charging process and enters the drip charge (trickle charge), until the battery will not be extracted from the memory. This type of memory is ideal for batteries, which need time to charge a certain shock.

For example, you know that your capacity 2000mAh NiMH batteries need a charge for ? 12 hours at a charging current ? 200mA, and chargerfits these parameters - excellent! So this type of charger is ideal for charging your battery. But if in addition to the battery capacity of 2000mAh you have other sets of rechargeable batteries, for example, the capacity of 2500mAh - 3000mAh, this charger is not suitable, because these batteries in this charger will not charge timer limit is due to the limited time that will inevitably lead to loss of capacity, and premature failure of the battery.

NiMH battery high capacity

Therefore, NiMH battery larger containers, will have to buy an extra charger with higher charging current and/or necessary to limit the charging time, charging that meets the requirements for the various AA battery.

Many battery manufacturers, to AA-battery case, indicate the optimal charging parameters, see photo above. Following these parameters to the charging, you can maximize the life of the NiMH batteries.

The second type of chargers - fast/fast charge batteries; complete the definition of charging on-dV, pictured above - in the background, in the area defocus. This type of charger is characterized by a high current charge/discharge, which is suitable for charging/discharging any penlight batteries of different capacities. If you need to quickly charge NiMH batteries- This device will charge your battery in 3-6 hours, depending on battery capacity. Typically, the charge/discharge current of the devices is the same, on average, it is 500mA - 800mA. Completing the battery charge is at a voltage drop (-dV). Thus, duration battery chargevarious capacities will be completely different. That is, the battery capacity of 1800mAh will be charged, for example, 3 hours, and the battery capacity of 3000mAh will be charged, for example, 7:00.

Remember, the higher the current charge/discharge NiMH battery, the shorter the period of its operation. If the housing is not explicitly specified by the battery charging parameters to extend the battery life, you should install the charging current does not exceed 10% of the listed capacity, respectively, the discharge current - no more than 5%.
That is, we charge the battery capacity of 2000mAh current 200mA, and Discharging current 100mA. The high charge currents (500mA - 1000mA) ruthlessly reduce the service life of any NiMH AA-batteries. If circumstances permit and the time to charge the battery using the so-called benign charge currents (180mA - 250mA).

The third type of charger - intelligent chargers (analyzers), pictured below - TechnoLine BC-700. Thanks to its unique capabilities, these chargers strongly stand out from the mass of other storage types. For example, if the first two types discussed above, at the same time can be used for charging the battery only identical, and a minimum of two pieces, the intelligent chargers are no such restrictions, at the same time, you can use different sizes of batteries (AA/AAA) at the same time you can charge any amount of battery life (at least 1 battery); range charge/discharge current; independent storage compartments - setting the charge/discharge for each battery can be selected individually, modes «recovery» and «test»; informative LCD-display, etc.

TechnoLine BC-700 - intelligent charger (analyzer)

As you may have guessed, TechnoLine BC-700 - the main character of the article. With this analyzer, we will learn the ins and outs service NiMH AA battery.
If your house is not yet of this wonderful charger advise to get as the charger that you use today, systematically and ruthlessly kills your nickel-metal hydride rechargeable batteries. - Doubt? - Who will prove...

Remember in the last article I talked about the fact that there is absolutely identical NiMH AA battery? So, on this basis, we can assume that each individual battery needed terms of service, one wants longer battery charge, and the other less... Hence, for each battery requires an individual approach, that is - the individual parameters charge/discharge.
- Can the memory of the first two types provide customized service modes NiMH batteries?
- No, can... They serve all at once straightforward set of batteries, which did not dwell on the individual needs of each instance. And that's too bad.

Charging the NiMH batteries

Let's find out what's really going on with the batteries in your charger (memoryof the first two types). So you put on at the same time charging 2 or 4 NiMH batteries, and when charging is complete - at the same time took them out of the charger.
- All right, I do not mistake?

So, a set of rechargeable batteries, your charger has completed the process of charging only for any single battery that before anyone had time to recharge. The rest of the battery, and have not obtained the charge remained unsatisfied is not fully charged. What is the threat? Divorce...This is the risk that the systematic or periodic nedozaryadka NiMH battery contributes a significant loss of capacity and premature aging of the batteries of this type.

Now let's see how behaves memory TechnoLine BC-700 with the same set of batteries, see photo on the right.
This charger, your battery every individual, allows charging or discharging exactly as much time as necessary: - 10 hours... - then 10... - 20 hours... - then 20... There are no time limits and restrictions for proper charging/discharging your battery. Such an individual approach to serviceable batteries, and helps to increase the life of your NiMH batteriesand the preservation of their working capacity for a long time. Hence we conclude: charger third type, in this case - TechnoLine BC-700 (pictured above) - this is exactly the memory that will most effectively serve your finger NiMH batteries.
- Expensive? Yes, it is slightly more expensive than conventional chargers, but believe me - it's worth it...
At this until a semicolon and continue the theme battery carein the second part of the article that will talk about how, how to restore the capacity of NiMH batteries. Thank you for your attention.

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© Andrey Ko 2013***
Test charging NiMH battery capacity recovery
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