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Battery Expansion & Ejection (Puffing / Swelling)
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Consultant
lvl.2

United States
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I was talking to a pilot the other day who had a crash where he was flying in Arizona, it was 96 out (stated ambient operating temp of the Phantom 4 Pro is 104).  And the Lipo expanded and ejected.  He thinks it must have been due to the temps.  

Seems like not all LiPo batteries, even from the same manufacturer are identical so maybe it was a faulty battery?

Has anyone else run into this. I'm scared now to fly my drone in anything like above 90 degrees F.  I know you aren't supposed to store lipos in the fridge as you can get condensation inside but I'm wondering if anyone else that flies in hot climates briefly chills there batteries in a cooler or something while on site or has other practices specific to the hot climate such as allowing a cool down period for the drone between battery changes?

7-8 10:24
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DJI Stephen
Super Moderator

Online

Hello and good day Consultant. Thank you for reaching out and for sharing these information with us. Battery swelling is basically caused by to much heat, vast changes in temperature and/or moisture getting into the battery itself. Never store the battery in an environment with a temperature higher than 60°C when not in use and kept away from direct sunlight, damp, water etc. In addition please do not fly your drone with swollen batteries this might lead to an accident during the flight. In addition I will be posting a link where in you can check the DJI Phantom 4 Intelligent Flight Battery Safety Guidelines ( https://dl.djicdn.com/downloads/ ... delines_V1.0_EN.pdf ). Thank you.

7-8 10:38
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ALABAMA
Captain
Flight distance : 9220325 ft
United States
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Looks like if it expanded, it would have been fitting tighter.
7-8 14:29
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Geebax
Captain
Australia
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ALABAMA Posted at 7-8 14:29
Looks like if it expanded, it would have been fitting tighter.

Yes, it does not make any sense that it expanded and was then ejected?? Batteries do not self-eject unless they were not properly inserted in the first place.
7-8 14:43
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NM_Quad
Second Officer
United States
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I fly next door to Arizona in New Mexico.  I have flown many times in 100F (37C) plus temps and never experienced a battery swelling.  In hot weather, flight times are slightly reduced and the battery is sure hot when you get it back, but never noticed any swelling or difficulty getting it ejected.  I never charge such hot batteries in the field - always let them cool down naturally and charge later.  I have never cooled my batteries in a refrigerator before a flight.  The quick temperature change from cold to quite hot is probably worse for the batteries than just the heat.  These batteries do swell as they age.  If you have difficulty putting it in the drone, probably best to quit using it.  It is defective.  Of the three batteries I bought for my old P2 5-6 years ago, only one had started to swell.  My 3-4 year old P3S batteries are fine.  I echo the thought that a tight fitting swollen battery could then self eject.  Always ensure the battery is properly seated and "clicked" into place.  You can sometimes insert a battery without that final "click" to secure it.  Read DJI Stephen's link to the battery guidelines.  In short, don't use a swollen battery (a cell could fail in flight), let your batteries warm up and cool down naturally, and don't be afraid to fly in temps around 100F, just be aware of a reduced flight time to get it back home.  Good luck with your drone and batteries.
7-8 15:47
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