Practical Considerations that Maximize Battery Performance
1. Locate the battery’s date of manufacture. Discontinue using outdated batteries.
Older batteries may not hold a charge as well as newer ones. Using an outdated battery can also lead to erratic operation, a shorter lifespan and impaired product performance. As a rule-of-thumb, industry “best practices” generally recommend you discontinue usage when:
a. A battery is more than two years old.
b. Utilized for 18 months in a typical retail application.
c. Used for 12 months in a 2-3 shift industrial or warehouse application.
2. Maintain 1-2 spare batteries per unit.
Keeping extra batteries on hand allows you to fully charge the others off shift. This helps increase reliability and minimizes downtime.
3. Assign a specific charging terminal to each user.
Locating charging stations throughout the floor is a common practice. However, as their batteries become discharged, users tend to simply pick up a battery from any charging station, even though it may have been placed there only a few minutes earlier.
4. Associate specific batteries to a specific unit.
The following process helps ensure that each battery is associated with a specific device and battery charger:
a. Label each mobile device with its own unique number.
b. Upon receipt of new batteries, mark each one with the date received.
c. Next, assign each battery to a specific mobile device and label each battery accordingly.
d. Finally, assign each battery to a specific adapter, if applicable, in a specific charger, and appropriately label each battery.
5. Keep your battery contact surfaces clean.
This is critical and often overlooked!
Dirty contact points are a main source of charging problems. Regular cleaning is required for optimal performance. To clear dirt and residue, gently clean the contacts with a soft cloth. Pure
alcohol may be used to remove grease and other contaminants.
Manage the Power Requirements of your Mobile Device
Virtually all mobile devices let the user select the various display and readout settings that have a significant impact on battery usage. User-selectable settings can include:
– Display brightness
– Elapsed time until display dims
– Elapsed time until device enters “sleep” mode
– Elapsed time until device turns “off”
– Volume of audible error or confirmation signal
– Adjustable WLAN settings, including “Auto off” when no data is being transmitted
So, take full advantage of your power management tools: Most mobile devices come with power management software that allows users to create custom individual user profiles that will significantly reduce power consumption, and therefore, battery usage.
Proper Battery Storage for Maximum Life
Check the thermostat: While lithium-ion batteries can survive very cold temperatures, excessive heat can harm the batteries and reduce their useful life. So if your mobile devices or spare batteries are stored for any length of time, make sure the storage environment will not expose the equipment to extreme temperatures.
Typically, lithium-ion batteries can be stored between 32 and 104 degrees Fahrenheit, but the lower end of that temperature range, out of direct sunlight, is best. Ideally, store the batteries in a cooler place.
When to Replace your Batteries
The simplest answer is to replace your battery when it is no longer capable of efficiently performing its tasks. You should consider replacing the batteries for mobile devices in demanding environments inside of 24 months to ensure optimum device performance.
Even the best batteries will degrade over time, and can lose a significant amount of their capacity in the course of a year, depending on many factors, such as:
– The battery’s age
– Time from its first use
– Its charging history
– Temperature exposure/environmental usage conditions
– Depth of discharge
To maximize your productivity and minimize your cost, it’s important to keep in mind the “hidden cost” of not replacing a battery in time. When a battery dies mid-shift and can’t be properly recharged, then you’ve lost the productivity of that worker while they hunt down another battery, replace it in their device and finally resume their task. Multiply that by possibly thousands of workers, mobile devices, and occurrences and the cost of ill-timed battery failures really adds up.
Good Battery Management, Summarized:
1. Track the age of your batteries to know when replacement is likely
2. Maintain a sufficient number of charged spares, strategically located throughout the work area
3. Keep the battery’s contacts clean for most efficient charging
4. Make certain your workforce utilizes their mobile device’s power management software to maximum effect
5. Store your batteries in the appropriate environment
Follow the guidelines we’ve presented and you’ll achieve increased productivity and fewer work interruptions from battery-related issues. We want to make Battery Management simple and effective so you can complete your work in a cost-efficient and timely manner.
Find Out If You Qualify For A Battery Management Or Battery Refresh
Contact us or Call us at 1-800-281-3056 today to find out if you qualify for our Battery Management Program that can save you thousands of dollars each year by optimizing your battery life.