How to Resurrect a Power Tool Battery

It’s possible to revive both nickel cadmium (Nicad) and nickel metal hydride (Ni MH) cordless drill batteries. These batteries wear down and eventually die over their normal life cycle. The cordless drill battery resurrection process is simple and quick, but can be hazardous if you overcharge or mishandle the rechargeable batteries.

Mark the positive and negative leads on the battery case, using the voltmeter to determine which is positive and which is negative.

Unscrew the cordless drill battery case to reveal the rechargeable batteries within the case. Carefully remove the top of the cordless drill battery case. Keep the screws and the spring in a container so you can find them during reassembly.

Lift the battery cells from the battery casing. If the Dyson vacuum cleaner batteries are shrink-wrapped together, cut enough of the plastic away with scissors to reveal the top and bottoms of the battery cells.

Locate the point at which the wires from the battery pack terminal run down through the silver cardboard insulator. Mark this opening before you remove the battery terminal for easier reassembly.

Loosen and lift off the terminal piece, using needle-nose pliers. The metal band underneath the terminal piece must be insulated with electrical tape before you proceed.

Remove the silver cardboard insulation piece and place this piece aside. Remove the shrink wrap from the top and bottom of the battery cells, so the battery leads are exposed.

Test the batteries within the pack to determine which cells need reconditioning. Use the battery tester and mark all batteries that are not at full charge capacity.

Find the positive, or raised end, on the first battery to be reconditioned. Place the black alligator clamp from the 12-volt power source on the negative end of the battery cell, while holding the red alligator clamp to the positive end for no longer than two seconds.

Release both clamps. Using the battery tester, test the battery cell to see if it has been fully recharged. If not, repeat the zapping process.

Repeat the zapping process with all Paslode power tool batteries until they have all been reconditioned and then reassemble the battery pack.

Put on safety goggles, insulated gloves and long-sleeve shirts before beginning the reconditioning process.

Don’t get your wires crossed or an explosion may occur.

 

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Hot Rodding a Power Drill Battery

So, your power drill battery dies. What now? Fork over 85 bucks for a new one? I don’t think so. After searching high and low on the internet for a good price for a replacment battery I found the retail for my Black & Decker 14.4V to range from 35-85 dollars. Riiiight. Time to make your own!

At this point it would be good to mention you should really discharge the pack before you continue. Don’t play with electricity unless you know what you are doing!

Step 1: Let’s Find Out What Is Inside!

I had a little brainstorm and decided to open this thing up and see what makes it tick. It’s funny, I always thought there would be some mystical magical component of power tool batteries that justified the outrageous prices…you know, custom made or ethereal glowing lights or little elves or something. Turns out they are just a rip off.

Fortunately for me the internals were looking familiar, a simple set of “Sub C” rechargable NiCd cells from my RC car racing days. I used to build my own racing battery packs so I couldn’t help applying that here.

I had visions of using power tool batteries that power world championship RC cars and transform my moderately powered B&D; into a drill that would make screws and yet-to-be-drilled holes tremble with unspeakable fear.

When you open the battery you’ll need to save some plastic bits detailed below. Don’t break them.

Step 2: Replacement Sub C Cells

At this point I came back to reality. The racing batteries alone would cost a hundred bucks. So, I settled on a brand name NiCd cell from GP. The main difference from the stock batteries is that these are 2000 mAh cells and the stock ones are only 1700 mAh…so I should get more run time…basically a bigger gas tank.

In case you aren’t good at math, a 14.4 battery takes 12 1.2V cells to make up a pack.

Step 3: Battery Bars

Next up on the bill of materials are some RC parts. These 24k gold plated battery bars are from Novak racing. I couldn’t skimp everywhere. A bag of 28 was about $14.00 from Tower Hobbies.

I only needed 10 to assemble one pack, but I have another drill battery waiting do die. So, that’s five bucks for the bars and up to $26.48 total. Still ten bucks shy of the best retail price I could find  Incidentally that price was direct from Black & Decker.

Step 4: A Bit of Wire…

Finally we have some 14AWG high flexibility silicone wire from another RC company.

Just had this lying around and I only needed about 3 inches so let’s call it free.

I would recommend using good quality wire here. Your battery will only be as good as the weakest link. I prefer not to have any weak links. This will also be a likely spot for a meltdown if your wire is not up to the task.

Step 5: On to the Assembly

I paried the cells and bound them with electrical tape just to make them easier to solder together. These buggers are a little hard to hold on to.

Don’t forget to tin both ends of the Bosch cordless drill battery before you try and attach the bars. A drop of flux and a drop of solder, not too much though.

I should mention that you will need a pretty serious soldering iron to get this job done. Don’t overheat the battery…kind of a catch 22 here.

Step 6: Now the Tricky Part…

After getting the battery assembled I removed the electical tape. The bars are very rigid and have no problem holding the pack together. Soldering the bars on and getting everything to line up is the hard part. Be patient.

The real tricky part is the cell that sits on top of the pack.(red wire attached) This top-most battery sticks up into the shank of the battery case. The little black plastic bit houses the stock connectors that mate with the actual drill and charger…so save that and be careful not to brake it.

The top battery needs to be attached to the battery direcly below it and sit slightly offset. B&D accomplishes this with another plastic part that I tossed. I used one of the stock battery bars that I pulled off the stock battery pack since they were thin and flexible. Both batteries were soldered to the sock bar while they were sitting next to each other. Then, to move the one onto the top, I just folded the battery bar in half…clear as mud…I guess I should have taken a picutre. Finally I wrapped the bottom of the top battery with electrical tape to prevent any shorting.

Step 7: You’re Done!

Well, that’s it. Took about two hours from start to finish and it went back into the case quite nicely. The Novak battery bars came with stickers. I love that, so I put a Novak sticker on this one so I would know which pack was my uber pack. Charged it, put it into the drill and it runs like a champ.

You can hear the difference compared to the stock Milwaukee power tool battery. This puppy is just begging for some heavy drilling. Time to pull some screws out of a big crate.

Laptop battery won’t charge in Windows 10, 8.1, 7

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Is your Apple laptop battery not recharging? If that’s so, it could be a Windows, battery or adapter issue. If you’re using an antiquated laptop, it might be the case that a replacement battery is required. However, you should not need to replace the battery for relatively new Windows 10 laptops. This is how you can fix a laptop battery that isn’t recharging.

Laptop battery isn’t charging, how to fix it?

Battery issues can cause many problems on your laptop. Speaking of issues, these are some of the common battery problems that users reported:

Dell laptop battery not charging but laptop works with power adaptor – This issue can affect any laptop brand. If this problem occurs, it’s rather likely that your battery is faulty. To fix the issue, it’s advised to replace your laptop battery.
Laptop battery not charging, Asus, Hp, Dell, Acer, Lenovo, Toshiba, Samsung, Sony Vaio, Fujitsu – This issue can affect any laptop brand, and if you encounter this problem on your PC, be sure to try some of our solutions.
Laptop battery plugged in not charging – According to users, sometimes their battery won’t charge even if the device is plugged to the power outlet. If that’s the case, try updating your battery driver and check if that solves the problem.
Sony laptop battery not charging Windows 8 – This issue can appear in older versions of Windows as well. Even if you don’t use Windows 10, you can use most of our solutions since they are fully compatible with Windows 8 and 7.

Solution 1 – Run Power Troubleshooter

Sometimes you can fix this problem simply by running the power troubleshooter. To run the power troubleshooter, you need to do the following:

Press Windows Key + S and enter troubleshoot. Select Troubleshoot from the menu.

Choose Power from the right pane and click Run the troubleshooter button.

Now follow the instructions on the screen.

Once the troubleshooter is finished, check if the problem is resolved.

If the Troubleshooter isn’t helpful, We also recommend you to download this tool to fix various PC problems, hardware failure and peripherals issues, malware and file loss.

READ ALSO: Fix: Missing battery icon in Windows 10

Solution 2 – Update Battery Driver

It might be the case that you need to update your battery driver. Reinstalling the battery driver will usually fix batteries that aren’t recharging. You can do that as follows.

Press Windows Key + X to open Win + X menu. Now choose Device Manager from the list.

Now click Batteries in the Device Manager window.
Next, you should right-click Microsoft ACPI-Compliant Control Method Battery and select Uninstall from the context menu.

Click Uninstall to confirm.

Click Action and then select Scan for hardware changes from there.
Select Batteries and right-click Microsoft ACPI-Compliant Control Method Battery again. Select the Update Driver Software option from the context menu.

A window opens from which you should select Search automatically for updated driver software. Windows will then find suitable battery drivers for you.

Some users reported that they don’t have Microsoft ACPI-Compliant Control Method Battery available in their list of devices. If that’s so, be sure to uninstall the device in your Battery section in Device Manager and reinstall its drivers. After doing that, the issue should be completely resolved.

Download TweakBit’s Driver Updater Tool (approved by Microsoft and Norton) to do it automatically and prevent the risk of downloading and installing the wrong driver versions.

Disclaimer: some functions of this tool are not free

Solution 3  – Remove and Reinsert the Battery

Removing and reinserting the battery could feasibly get it charging again. So switch off the laptop and remove the battery by sliding the battery release latch. Reinsert the battery after about five minutes and then restart Windows.

Note that you can also check the battery integrity when it’s removed. Plug the charger in and switch on the laptop with the battery removed. If the laptop still boots up, then the charger’s certainly fine. As such, the battery might need replacing.

Alternatively, you can check battery wear levels with software such as BatteryInfoView. You can add that to your laptop by clicking Download BatteryInfoView on this page. The software’s window provides numerous battery details including wear level. A lower battery wear level percentage value highlights a replacement is needed.

READ ALSO: How to fix ‘System battery voltage is low’ error on Windows 10

Note that you can also check the battery integrity when it’s removed. Plug the charger in and switch on the laptop with the battery removed. If the laptop still boots up, then the charger’s certainly fine. As such, the battery might need replacing.

Alternatively, you can check battery wear levels with software such as BatteryInfoView. You can add that to your laptop by clicking Download BatteryInfoView on this page. The software’s window provides numerous battery details including wear level. A lower battery wear level percentage value highlights a replacement is needed.

READ ALSO: How to fix ‘System battery voltage is low’ error on Windows 10

According to users, sometimes Samsung laptop battery issues can occur if you’re using an extension cord. Sometimes the extension cord might be the cause of the problem, therefore it’s advised to disconnect your laptop charger from the extension cord and connect it directly to the power outlet.

Several users reported that this solution worked for them, so be sure to try it out.

Solution 6 – Check if your device is overheating

Laptops can become quite hot, and sometimes the heat can affect your battery. Many users reported that they were unable to charge their laptop because their battery was overheating. To fix this problem, be sure to remove your battery, leave it for a couple of minutes and insert it again to your laptop.

We also have a useful guide on how to fix laptop overheating problems on Windows 10, so be sure to check it out for more information. If you want to keep a close eye on your temperature, we advise you to try AIDA64 Extreme. This is a useful application that allows you to monitor your temperature and keep a close eye on your hardware.

Solution 7 – Update your BIOS

If laptop battery isn’t charging, the problem might be your BIOS. As you know, BIOS is in charge of your motherboard and hardware, and it might be one of the reasons for battery problems.

To update your BIOS, first you need to remove your battery and connect the laptop to the charger. If your laptop works without the battery, you can proceed with updating BIOS. Keep in mind that it’s crucial that your laptop stays on during the BIOS update process. Before you start, test your laptop for a couple of minutes, and be sure that it works properly without a battery.

READ ALSO: Use these 7 solutions to fix laptop clicking noises

If your laptop doesn’t work while connected to a charger, or if it suddenly shuts down, you might cause permanent damage if you try to update your BIOS, so you should probably skip this solution. On the other hand, if the device doesn’t shut down randomly, you can download the latest BIOS from your laptop manufacturer’s website.

If you want to learn more about BIOS updating, we wrote a short guide on how to flash your BIOS, so be sure to check it out. Keep in mind that BIOS update is an advanced procedure, so be extra cautious. To see how to properly and safely update your BIOS, be sure to check your laptop manual or the instructions on the manufacturer’s website.

Solution 8 – Clean the adapter and laptop connectors

According to users, this issue can occur because your laptop or adapter connectors are covered with dust. Sometimes dust can lead to this issue, and in order to fix the problem, it’s advised to clean both laptop and adapter connectors.

To do that, turn off your laptop and disconnect the adapter from the power outlet. Now take a lint-free cloth and gently clean the connectors. It’s not necessary to use rubbing alcohol, but if you decide to use it, be sure that your connectors are completely dry before connecting your adapter to the wall outlet.

Once your connectors are clean, the charging issue should be completely resolved.

Solution 9 – Check if your adapter is working properly

Sometimes charging issues can occur due to your adapter. If your adapter is faulty, the battery won’t be able to charge at all, and you’ll encounter this issue. To fix the problem, you need to inspect your adapter.

Turn your laptop off and disconnect the adapter from the power outlet. Inspect the cable for any tears or dents. In addition, be sure to check the connector as well. In case the connector is wobbly or if it doesn’t connect properly to the laptop, it might be damaged. If there are any noticeable physical issues with your adapter, you’ll need to replace the adapter immediately. If there’s no physical damage on the adapter, remove the laptop battery and connect the adapter to your laptop.

Now connect the adapter to the power outlet and check if everything works. If your laptop works, the issue is most likely your battery. On the other hand, if your laptop still won’t charge, the problem is your adapter, and you should replace it as soon as you can.
Solution 10 – Remove the battery and press the Power button

According to users, you might be able to fix this problem simply by turning off your laptop and removing its battery. In addition to removing the battery, disconnect the power adapter. Now press and hold the Power button for a couple of seconds. After doing that, try to turn on your device.

Removing Memory Effect of Cordless Drill Battery

You’ve probably heard term “Memory Effect”. “Memory Effect is the phenomenon that makes a cordless drill battery lose its capacity to deliver a full charge. It happens more with NiCd batteries much less with NiMh and none whatsoever with Li-ion. In other words only the Nickel based batteries (Ni) suffer from memory effect.”

When a battery is repeatedly partially discharged, it only remembers the last amount of charge it held. If more power is demanded the next time, it shuts down completely as if to protest against the extra work. That in short is the memory effect.

The simplest way to remove a memory effect from a cordless drill is to make it go through a reconditioning charge cycle.

In order to do this:

Charge the drill fully.

Discharge it completely under zero load, i.e. allow the drill to run on its own till it stops. People usually accomplish this by taping the trigger in an ON position.

Charge the battery fully again.

If this procedure improves the performance of the battery then repeat it only after at least one month.

Caution: Do not try this with a power tool battery for Makita that’s working properly already. You should charge a normally functioning battery whenever it loses substantial power to function. Do the deep discharge described above only when you are trying to recondition a battery that doesn’t work properly anymore.

Important Note: Check the user manual of the cordless drill. Your charger may be equipped with the ability to deep charge/ recondition the battery. Follow the instructions, if any, before you try this.

If this doesn’t work, it may be time to buy a new cordless drill battery for Hitachi.

Cordless Drill Parts and Repair Diagnosis

To better understand how to diagnose your power tools, it is important to first know how they work. Although your tools and their motors can be intensely complex machines, becoming familiar with the basic functions and pieces of your tool’s motor is not only important but surprisingly simple as well.

To begin, your Paslode power tool battery input and output works much like the water in your sprinkler system; water flows through a predetermined path and is expelled at an opposite end to “act” on your lawn or garden. If said water doesn’t come sparkling from your sprinklers to the earth, you can sure be a problem has occurred somewhere along its path of movement. In theory, problems in your power tools occur, and can be diagnosed, in exactly the same way. Electricity follows a distinct path in your power tools; it enters from a power source and travels along an electrical path of wires and connectors to the tool’s motor where it is converted into actual physical power. That power is then expelled at the opposite end of the tool in the form of a spinning chuck or saw blade.

The electrical path begins, of course, with a power source like a battery or power cord. Once this source is activated electrical energy travels through the power cord to the tool’s switch or trigger which will either make or break the electrical flow that powers your tool. After surging through the switch, the electrical path (in a nutshell) runs through the tool’s carbon brushes, into the armature (more specifically, its commutator bars), and lastly, the energy moves into the field where is ultimately converted into real physical force. To diagnose a problem in your power tool, simply start at the power source and follow the electrical path.

Fortunately, because the first components along the electrical path are more likely to experience the wears of power surges or excess heat, problems occurring early in the electrical path are far more common than those that occur deeper within the tool. Additionally, your field and armature are much more heartily fabricated than are your standard brushes and switches, but, I digress. To get more properly down to business, I’ll begin at the beginning and talk a bit about power cords.

Usually, it’s pretty darn apparent if you have cord damage. This will cause over-heating, an overall loss of power, and will rear its head with visible wear and tear like cracks or breakage. If the cord is damaged, it acts like a minor/major kink in a garden hose or clog in a water pipe and the cord can not deliver adequate electrical flow to the tool’s motor. This means the tool will have to work significantly harder to perform which will, in turn, cause the motor to heat-up which will eventually cause damage to the tool’s interior components. As worn or broken power cords are also an electrical hazard, they should always be replaced. Note: The same “kink” or “clog” phenomenon will also occur where a too long extension cord is used. Because electrical energy depletes as it moves along its path, too long extension cords will deliver less energy and over-heat your Firestorm cordless drill battery. Always use the shortest length extension cord possible.

After checking the cord, move on to the switch. Here, heat damage is fairly simple to detect – the wiring will be melted or discolored or the actual plastic of the switch body will be appear burnt or melted. If the power switch has shorted or failed, the electrical path will stop there and the tool will not engage. Tell-tale bad-switch symptoms usually come in the form of troubled starts, over-heating, and a noticeable drop in your power tool’s performance and overall power. If the switch is properly connected and you can’t see any visible damage, move ahead to the tool’s brushes.

Brush damage can cause difficult start-ups, on/off action during use, a general lack of power, excess heat, or some bad smells or sparking. Additionally, a failing brush can sometimes keep your power tools from starting altogether. With your brushes damage usually occurs in one (or more) of the following forms: heavy wear, chipping or crumbling, burrs, or heat damage. It is hard to say which is most common, but I’d wager it’s the wear and tear; some brushes have wear-lines to indicate when the brush requires replacement, however, it’s a pretty good rule of thumb that when the brush’s carbon block wears to about a quarter inch in thickness, it needs to be replaced.

Chipping occurs when the carbon becomes abnormally damaged or begins to crumble inside the tool. As the name implies, a chipped brush will have a chunk missing from the carbon. Burrs, on the other hand, are terrible little creatures that can form around your brushes blocking or preventing the connection between brush and commutator. These can usually be scraped away, but it’s still important to ensure your brushes are in otherwise good condition – as long as you’ve cracked into the motor, you may consider replacing burred-up brushes anyway.

Also verify the springiness of your brush’s spring tail. If said springiness is gone, your brushes will lack the required pressure to maintain contact with the armature. Lastly, heat-damage on your brushes will look precisely as you’d expect, you will see burn spots on the carbon or other forms discoloration on the spring and wires. Chipping, crumbling, heat-damaged, or heavily worn brushes all require replacement.

While you’re here at the brushes though, it’s a great opportunity to continue down the electrical path to your armature and its commutator bars. Together, the commutator bars should form a complete and perfect circle, if there are any bumps, divots, or missing bars, this could account not only for chipping brushes but for start/stop action as well. Also, look for discoloration or heat-damage on the commutators and take a visual inventory of the rest of the armature assembly. If the assembly has endured any heat-damage, this can significantly effect the performance of your power tool. Heat-damage, of course, can be identified by any discoloration, burning, and/or melting on the armature assembly. Armature damage can additionally cause high-heat, low-power, or smoking or sparking during use.

Now, if only by process of elimination, you know the electrical path has lead us to the tool’s field, which, despite its toughness, is a delicate and extremely vital part of your power tool. Like with your armature, heat-damage from misuse will manifest on the field as discoloration, burning, or melting of its wiring and/or insulation. It is also sadly common for a field to crash after being pushed too hard by its operator. When tools are forced to work on projects that exceed their design, or if inadequate power is flowing through the electrical path, a field can quickly go kaput. Failing field symptoms include over-heating, a significant loss of power, and smoking or sparking during use. Note: Because fields and armatures are both expensive and more difficult to replace, it’s important to treat your power tool batteries for Milwaukee. Don’t misuse or abuse them, keep them adequately maintained, and repair them when they need it.

Finally, now that you know what to look for, there are a few things to keep in mind as you work with and diagnose your power tools. First, just like energy runs down the electrical path in your power tools, so does damage. Within your tool, any suffering component can have a domino effect that will damage neighboring parts along the electrical pathway. Hence, it is extremely important to isolate your problem(s) and repair it before it spreads to the tool’s other components. Secondly, keep in mind that all of these malfunctions can feel very similar from the outside and that they may occur singularly or in any combination. Be familiar with your power tools and learn to understand their subtle cues. This will help you repair your power tools at the first signs of drag or malfunction. In the end, it is better for us all to process our little problems before they become out of control. Love your tools and I promise they will love you back.

 

How to Restore NiCad Cordless Drill Batteries

As you use nickel-cadmium (NiCad) rechargeable Panasonic cordless drill batteries and continuously recharge them, they hold less and less of a full charge over time. Within the rechargeable batteries a dendrite crystal substance, also known as battery charge memory, builds up and decreases the charge capacity. Eventually, when the rechargeable battery no longer holds a charge, the dendrite crystals have built up. To repair NiCad rechargeable batteries, you need to remove the dendrite crystals using an electric current.

Locate the black and red clamps on the trickle charger.

Test the NiCad rechargeable battery to make sure it is fully discharged.

Locate the positive and negative ends of the NiCad rechargeable battery.

Protect your eyes, hands and skin before beginning the rechargeable battery “jump start” process. This is a dangerous and hazardous procedure.

Hold the black clamp on the negative end of the battery.

Tap the red clamp on the positive end of the Hitachi cordless drill battery one or two times. Sparks may crack from the end of the battery.

Immediately hold the red and black clamps on the battery for 1 to 3 seconds only.

Use the battery tester or multimeter to determine the battery charge.

Repeat the process until the battery is fully charged.

 

Storing Your Cordless Drill Battery

Like any battery the life of it can be maintained if the cordless drill battery for Paslode  is stored in a dry environment. I have seen many batteries left in cold damp garages or workshops, and not looked at for weeks, maybe even months. That is not a good thing to do at all.

If possible store your batteries in a cool dry place. if you got a bag or a case with your cordless drill, then it only takes a few seconds to pop the battery back in there and it will keep it safe.

If you plan on storing your battery away for a few weeks or months, then the ideal charge should be around 40% as at this charge, the battery will last longer.

Should you remove the battery from the drill when not in use?

This is a question that we are asked all of the time. We look at many manuals on a weekly basis, and we have tried removing the battery and also leaving it in the drill. We have not found anything that makes a recommendation either way. Our testing has also shown that there was no difference either way by leaving it in place, or taking it out and storing it in a separate place.
Other Top Tips

General Treatment

Treat your Black & Decker cordless drill batteries with as much care as you possibly can. Avoid dropping them because they can crack and that will damage them and can break them as well. I have seen people toss batteries into a tool bag to charge later, and the terminals have been shorted out by a screwdriver or a spanner.

That causes serious damage to a battery. Most of them come with some sort or plastic protective cover to stop the terminals being shorted out, so hold on to it and use it as well.

Use of Drills

The higher torque you use on a drill, or the higher speed that you use on a drill, then the more battery power it will need and will use it up a great deal faster. Many people tend to place their drill on the highest settings available and use that for every job.

You really don’t need to do that, and it takes just seconds to get it on the right settings. It will also make your battery last longer, and not be so tough on it.

Here is a rough guide to the right battery for the right job:

For Light Work – Anything between 7-15 Volts will be find and a 12 volt is ideal

For Medium Work – Either a 12 or 18 volt is ideal or anything in between

For Heavy work – A minimum of 18 or 20 volt or anything bigger

So for example, if you plan on using your cordless drill for drilling metal or as a masonry/hammer drill, then buy one with at least an 18 volt battery pack, or even better a 20 volt battery pack.

Using a lower voltage Metabo drill battery to do really heavy work will very quickly render a smaller voltage battery completely useless, in a very short space of time.