What a ‘swollen battery’ means?
The term ‘swollen battery’ can be associated with any lithium battery used in a device, like mobile phones, laptops or digital cameras. There are many reasons, which cause the battery to expand and may vary between different types of devices. Quite common reason is using the wrong charger, one of primarily examples could be fake iPhone or MacBook chargers, which can lead to damaging parts like a Tristar chip (part responsible for regulating amount of power received by the phone).
Batteries are built from many cells that have a strict limit on how much power can be put through them. Overcharging those cells in lithium causes it to build up too fast. The whole reaction that takes place creates heat (one of signs that might be a sign that your battery is expanding and may eventually become a hazard). Recognizing this problem can sometimes be quite easy to do as there
are visible damages on the device, like the one attached (parts of device being forced out of their place from inside out, or like in this particular situation the touch pad has stopped working as well as being forced out of position). So, when you find yourself in the position where your device has a swollen battery, what do you do?
What actions to take after noticing your swollen battery?
First of all, never attempt to puncture a battery. Even those that look perfectly healthy, it can be very dangerous as inside there are substances or gasses that can be harmful to your health. Any device you suspect has a swollen battery, should be taken care of with extra caution. User-removable
batteries should be carefully removed and placed somewhere safe and cool, as heat can continue the expansion of battery or make it more vulnerable to puncturing. Batteries should never (swollen or not) be disposed into the general waste or recycling. They won’t be handled appropriately and usually end up somewhere very harmful to the environment. There are many facilities that are authorized to dispose of batteries. Attached pictures sh
ow our clients laptop that has been brought in for touchpad repair as it see
med to have stopped working. With further inspection and our client’s guidance we noticed that the whole casing was misaligned. Further inspection showed us more damage and led us to suspicion the battery has been swollen. Very fortunately we noticed all of that before it caused any damage to other parts of the laptop or it’s user!
Most devices these days have batteries that are not user-removable, in which case best option is to take the whole device into specialist to take care of it. Swollen batteries should never be plugged into power or used. Doing so you can put yourself and others at risk, as swollen batteries have tendency to explode if not handled properly. Now that we know what a swollen battery is and how to handle one, how can be avoid it from happening?
How to avoid a swollen battery?
There’s no way of preventing failure in batteries (there might be a manufacturer fault or it’s just old), but there are ways to prevent expansion of the battery from happening and maximize its life. As mentioned earlier very common reason for battery failure is unappropriated/fake charger. Always buy certified and original chargers. Saving few pounds on a fake charger can become a lot more costly or even dangerous in the long term. Cheap chargers don’t have the same specifics and are made from (obviously) cheaper products. Another quite important factor is not to charge it all the time. Batteries are made to exercise their capacity and regularly go through the cycles of discharging and recharging. Leaving your devices in hot environment for extended periods of time can also have bad effect on your battery life.
ACS only supply genuine OEM batteries or chargers or specified compatible units with full warranty from UK sources.