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Pro Charger Overcharging Battery?
1416 3 2015-12-27
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aburkefl
First Officer
Flight distance : 78612 ft
United States
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One of the terrific things about LiPo batteries in general is that they charge to double the voltage-per-cell of most other batteries. A run-of-the-mill car battery can have its individual cells charged to 2.1v per cell, thereby making a 6-cell battery register 12.6v at full charge (and after cooling down - most batteries heat up at least a little when being charged).

By contrast, a LiPo battery can be safely charged to 4.2v per cell. I *thought* that was the maximum - I could well be wrong.

Yesterday I updated to the latest firmware available for my Phantom 3 Pro. Before I started the update, I put a battery in my charger. This battery was fully charged a few days ago, so it *looks* fully charged. Following the documented procedure for such batteries, I turned the battery on and then it began charging. In about 20 minutes, the flashing lights all went off, indicating my battery was fully charged.

I put the microSD card into the gimbal, the battery into the battery compartment and turned my Phantom on. The buzzing started, the lights started flashing and the LED on the front of the gimbal alternated between green and red. About 15 or 20 minutes later (wasn't looking real close as things seemed to be progressing just fine), the buzzing changed to the pattern indicating the update process was complete. Sure enough, the LED on the front of the gimbal was solid green. I shut the Phantom off, turned on the controller, turned the Phantom back on and started the GO app.

Checked the menu page (the page you see when the craft is "warming up") and it showed the firmware was okay. Checked the "...about..." page to verify that all three items are the latest vintage - those were fine as well. Then I checked, mostly out of curiosity, the battery condition and voltages. EVERY CELL IN THAT BATTERY IS NOW REGISTERING A VOLTAGE SLIGHTLY HIGHER THAN 4.2 v! The highest/largest number is 4.29v - .09v above what would normally be considered maximum voltage for a given cell.

Can this be normal? I haven't yet checked my other batteries. My plan is to "top off" the battery like I did the first one, let it charge until the lights go out, then check the voltages.

Has anyone else experienced this? This is the first time I've seen voltages go over 4.2 on any of my batteries. But, I must confess, I've always assumed the charger would shut off at the proper point and never allow the voltage to exceed the rated max.

Art - N4PJ
Leesburg, FL

2015-12-27
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[RCG]Balthazar
Second Officer
Flight distance : 475371 ft
Norway
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I .gif'ed the Battery Cells tab from my two P3 batteries on healtydrones.Here's all 21 flights on the battery used when I lost my beloved bird.
Seeing all those red's at the beginning makes one wonder how well balanced the battery is.
(The gif's are linked from one of the forums on my server and weighs in at two and a half megs so it may take a sec to load)




Then I .gif'ed the last 21 flights from the other battery to compare.
Not nearly as many red's but still some and still early in the flights.

2015-12-27
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nrgwise
First Officer

United States
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Technically,  .09 volts doesn't count as 'over-charging' the battery.  However, believe it or not, a consistent charge of 4.3 or over IS considered overcharging the battery.  You are just under the threshold.
2015-12-27
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rodger
Captain
Flight distance : 15812070 ft
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United States
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Not uncommon Art. Nothing to worry about.
2015-12-27
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