Laptop batteries: Everything you need to know

The least considered thing when we discuss a laptop is the battery. Even if we think about it, we might only talk about battery timing. I wonder why a sane person would ignore the importance of a laptop’s battery.

Do you think that a laptop battery and its specs are something insignificant? If not, then you have come to the right place.

Laptop batteries: Everything you need to know

Even if someone thinks that the laptop battery is an essential part, they don’t know what to check in that battery or how to read the specs of the laptop battery and worry that it’s not that hard.

Most laptops come with removable batteries, so reading and collecting the info about batteries is super easy in that case. But the real game-changing point would be when you’re about to buy a laptop, and there you consider the battery.

So those planning to order a new laptop must consider these tips and suggestions before ordering.

How does a laptop’s battery affect it?

Well, most of us only know the answer, which says a battery that stays longer is the best one, as it affects our productivity. No one really cares about how the battery type and its specs affect the laptop.

The question is, does a bad battery affect a laptop’s performance in the long run?

The answer is “ not really,” but it will affect the life and the performance of the laptop’s hardware. Choosing a large-capacity battery is better than a small one if you need your laptop to last for a long time. So it is really important to check the batteries before buying a laptop.

Types of laptop batteries

It is impossible to select the best batteries for your laptop without knowing anything about the types of batteries.

Currently, three types of batteries are used for laptops. We will discuss each of them one by one.

1. Nickel metal hydride batteries:  

Nickel metal hydride batteries

If you wish to have a high-performing laptop battery with minimum to no maintenance, then nickel metal hydride could be a great choice.

These are not new battery formulae and have been in the market since the early 1990s. The best part and a promising thing are claiming that Nickel Metal hydride will still be used as it is very eco-friendly.

Additionally, the Nickel-metal hydride does not affect your laptop’s memory; it is a great plus for those whose entire career and promotion depend on their laptop and the data saved in it. Furthermore, for gamers, such a battery would be nothing less than a blessing that can keep their device’s memory intact.

There is a downside, and that is the lifetime. This battery would not stay intact for longer. After three to four years, it will perform less efficiently, with a decreased discharging rate.

Pros of Nickel metal hydride Batteries

  • Eco friendly.
  • Requires very low maintenance.
  • They have very lightweight batteries.
  • Does not overcharge.

2. Nickel Cadmium batteries

Nickel Cadmium batteries

You might have heard about fast-charging laptops. They do so because they have Nickel Cadmium batteries in them.

The nickel-cadmium laptop batteries can potentially charge faster than the other types. Furthermore, this fast charging would happen without any heating up. According to studies the Nickel-cadmium batteries can charge up to 70 percent within a few minutes. Isn’t it cool? Such batteries would be ideal for people who need their laptop daily and all the time for work, such as freelancer content writers.

Then lastly, in case whenever you need to replace or change the batteries, you can easily do so, as the price of these batteries is very affordable.

Now coming to the downsides of Nickel Cadmium batteries, they come with a medium-length shelf life; you cannot keep it in store for more than a year. Otherwise, it will become useless.

Pros of nickel Cadmium batteries?

  • Affordable batteries; you can update the batteries whenever needed.
  • Offers fast charging.
  • You can store extra batteries.
  • Does not heat up.

3. Lithium Ion batteries

Lithium Ion batteries

A battery would be ideal for heavy-duty devices, such as gaming laptops. It can be used for more than 1200 cycles. Moreover, the energy density of Lithium-ion batteries is better than the rest; the reason is probably that lithium metal is very light and has a high absorbing capacity.

Moreover, it will not affect the memory and performance of your device. So that is a pretty safe sign for those who cannot trust any substandard laptop batteries.

Luckily, a lithium-ion battery’s shelf life is more than a nickel battery’s. It will not die down even for two years or more.

There are some limitations to lithium-ion batteries as well. You need to keep the battery charged and try to avoid using the device when the battery is completely about to die. This low charge can affect the battery’s performance in the long run. In addition, you should look for extreme climatic changes that can also affect the battery’s charging capacity.

Pros of Lithium Ion batteries

  •  Higher potential as compared to other battery types.
  • Longer shelf life.
  • Requires minimum maintenance.
  • Does not overcharge.

4. Lithium-Polymer (Li-poly)

These batteries are similar to lithium-ion batteries, but they use a different type of electrolyte, which allows them to be made in many shapes and sizes. They also have a higher energy density than lithium-ion batteries and can be made in a thin, flexible form.

These batteries have many advantages, including high-energy density, which means they can store more charge, are lightweight and easily carried, are flexible, have low self-discharge rates, are high voltage, and have a long life cycle.

Does laptop battery voltage matter?

Some people believe that the voltage of the battery does not matter, but if a laptop manufacturer says that it would only work with a specific type of battery, then there is some logic to it. Thus, it goes without saying that there are some effects of the voltage of the battery used for a laptop.

In general, Laptop batteries are designed to operate in a specific voltage range which is between 10.8v and 11.1v for a typical Lithium-ion battery.

If the voltage of your batteries is higher than the required voltage, then it might heat up the laptop, and damage the hardware in the long run. So the short answer to this question is “yes” the voltage plays a significant role for a laptop’s battery.

Are laptop batteries lithium?

Not all laptop batteries are lithium batteries. Some are made up of cadmium and nickel too. So you cannot have an absolute idea or a perception that every laptop battery would have lithium.

To check whether your laptop has a lithium battery, you must take out the battery and read the details inscribed or printed on it.

Can laptop batteries explode?

it’s rare, But a laptop battery can explode or catch fire. It only happens if your laptop is overheating, short-circuiting, or damaging the battery.

To reduce the risk of a laptop battery exploding, follow the manufacturer’s instructions for use and care, and avoid using third-party batteries that may not meet the original manufacturer’s specifications.

How to know if your laptop battery might explode?

Well, it does not happen suddenly. Some obvious signs should be noticed to avoid this explosion.

  • The laptop would get extraordinarily hot.
  • You can smell strong fumes coming out of the laptop.
  • The laptop’s battery size increases.
  • Smoke is coming out of the device.
  • There is some liquid coming out from the battery when in use.

When should laptop batteries be replaced?

The ideal time to replace or change your laptop’s batteries is every three years. Most people complain that their laptop batteries are useless because they had to change them after two years. Well, that is completely normal. Almost all laptop batteries require replacement after 400 cycles.

Frequently asked questions

Are laptop batteries allowed on planes?

Not really. However, if you are carrying some spare batteries, then they might not allow you to carry them.

Can laptop batteries be shipped by air?

Yes, but there are some restrictions. Only commercial planes can carry fully packed laptop batteries.

Why did my laptop battery stop charging?

There are several reasons for that, If the cord is not intact, or the wires are clogged, and lastly, if the batteries cannot hold a charge.

Final words

This is all a layman should know about laptop batteries. We have discussed the types of batteries, how to use them, and the risks related to laptop batteries. You may consider all these aspects while buying a laptop or when changing your laptop’s batteries.

Ahmed Nouman

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