It’s not always possible to carry a LiPo battery charger wherever you go. And you never know when you might need one.
But there’s a catch-
You can simply charge your LiPo battery without a charger. You don’t need much for that. Knowing only a few tricks can save your time and energy.
So, want to know how to charge a LiPo battery without a charger?
There are many ways you can charge a Lithium Polymer battery without a charger. The easiest way is to charge the device with a USB cable. Besides, you can also charge a Lithium battery with a clip charger. Charging with a car battery or triple-A battery are other effective ways to charge a LiPo battery. You can also charge the batteries using a solar panel.
These are some hacks that’ll help you charge a LiPo battery. Completely without a charger. However, if you want to know more about LiPo battery charging then read along.
Here we go-
LiPo Battery 101
Before we jump to conclusions, let us first know about LiPo battery-
If you’re familiar with LiPo batteries, you must know their various uses. A world without LiPo batteries will be impossible to run.
But in case you’re not familiar with it-
LiPo battery is a rechargeable chemical battery used in devices as a source of power. LiPo stands for Lithium Polymer battery. And based on that you must already know that the battery runs with Lithium-ion.
This battery is essential for our daily use. And it’s also used to drive helicopters, planes, and drones. The LiPo battery has an average voltage of 3.7V. LiPo batteries run for a certain period. Approximately 2-3 days. After that, they either need to be replaced or charged.
When it comes to charging a LiPo battery, it’s not always easy. And charging the batteries on the go using a charger is not plausible.
However, there are some basic alternatives to charging your battery. And for that, no charger is needed. There are some simple steps for charging your LiPo battery.
Before you do that, you need to find out when your battery needs charging-
When Do You Charge A LiPo Battery?
When you use a LiPo battery, a constant rate of voltage is provided. This voltage is provided in exchange for electric current.
This voltage and current provides power to run the designated device. However, this rate of voltage keeps decreasing after every use. And the performance of the device keeps declining.
That is when you should start charging your LiPo batteries. These batteries require a certain balance of voltage when charging.
If you use good quality chargers, the batteries will be balanced automatically. However, if you want to charge the batteries without a charger, keep an eye on the rate of charge. Usually LiPo batteries need a recharge after every 2-3 days.
Here’s how you can charge without a charger-
How To Charge A LiPo Battery Without A Charger: Try Out 5 Simple Hacks
If you’re on the road and you find the LiPo battery of an RC device needs charging. Suddenly you remember that you forgot the charger at home. What will you do? Will you panic?
If the answer is yes, we are here to tell you no need to do so. You can easily recharge the LiPo battery following any of the five simple hacks. And that too completely without a charger.
Although the alternate methods are not 100% safe, they are perfect for saving your time. So when you do charge a LiPo battery without a charger, be extra careful.
Let us take a look at the methods of charging a LiPo battery without a charger-
Will Charging With USB Work?
Using the USB port for charging a LiPo battery is the best alternative for charging. That’s because this method is efficient and time-saving. All you need is a USB cable and a device to provide power to your LiPo battery.
To achieve this process successfully, you’ll need to follow some simple steps. The steps are briefly discussed below-
Step 1: Find Your USB
Take a USB cable for charging your device with the LiPo battery. Make sure the batteries stay in the device while charging. A smartphone USB cable would also do the job.
Step 2: Connect The Cables
In this step, you’ll have to connect the USB cable to a device that will help charge the battery. For example a laptop, power bank, PC, camera, and printer. These devices will act as the source of power for your battery.
Step 3: Connect The Device With LiPo Battery
Connect the USB end of the cable with a laptop/PC/Printer. After that, you need to connect the charging end of the cable with the devices containing LiPo batteries. Now, you might want to make sure if the USB cable type is compatible with the device. Otherwise, it is pretty risky and can cause a fire hazard.
Step 4: Let It Charge
After connecting both ends of the cable, turn on the power bank or laptop. This will activate the battery charging. Make sure the cables are connected all the way. Your LiPo battery will be charging.
You never know when you’ll need to charge a battery. That’s why USB cables are essential especially when you’re traveling. There are a lot of options out there in the market.
Can I Charge Using A Clip Charger?
Don’t worry if you can’t charge your LiPo battery with a USB cable. You can charge your battery using a clip charger.
Although it’s pretty rare, you’ll find a universal USB clip charger in the market. They are easy to carry. You might as well keep one in your purse.
Charging with a LiPo battery is easy. What you’ll need is a universal USB clip charger, power brick, and an electric socket.
The steps to charging your LiPo battery with clip chargers are very simple. It will take only a couple of seconds. Now onto the steps-
Step 1: Take The LiPo Batteries Out
For this method, you have to turn the device off. Then take out the LiPo batteries of the device. Make sure the device was turned off properly before taking out the batteries.
Step 2: Put The Batteries In The Charger
For the next step, the batteries should be placed in the charging platform of the clip charger. After that, plug the USB end of the charging cable into a power brick. Make sure the power bricks are compatible with the clip charger.
Are you done connecting the cable to a power brick? If yes, then you can move on to the next step-
Step 3: Plug It And Let It Charge
The final step is very simple. All you have to do is plug the charger in a socket or power board. Simply turn the charger on. You’ll find your LiPo battery charging smoothly.
Charging LiPo batteries with a clip charger is easy and quick. But there are some major drawbacks. You cannot use the batteries without a power source. Clip charger is portable. However, you need to look for a socket to charge your batteries.
I Have A Car Battery, Will That Work?
Yes! You might be on the run when your LiPo battery needs charging. Then you might as well put your car on break. Because you will need to use the battery of your car.
However, you would need some light bulbs for this method. And it will only take about 10-15 minutes for the battery to charge.
Here’s what you’ll have to do to charge a LiPo battery with a car-
Step 1: Find Out The Voltage
The first thing you should do is check the voltage of the lead-acid battery of your car. Now, you might be wondering-
Why do I need to know the voltage of the lead-acid battery?
Knowing the voltage of the battery helps you calculate the number of light bulbs you need. This will help you count the approximate voltage needed to charge the LiPo battery.
Step 2: Connect The LiPo Battery
Before proceeding, take the LiPo battery out of your device.
For this step, you have to connect the LiPo battery with the car battery.
Meanwhile, you need to connect light bulbs and batteries in a parallel connection. So that the light bulbs regulate the charging process.
You have to connect with the light bulbs. Otherwise, the current from the lead-acid battery will ruin the LiPo battery. Because the car batteries have high voltage. Which isn’t suitable for LiPo batteries. The light bulbs will act as a resistor and reduce the high voltage.
You might be wondering how to calculate light bulbs and voltage. Worry not. Here’s an example to help you figure out the number of light bulbs you need-
If you have a car with a 13V battery and a LiPo battery with 6V. In that case, you’ll need 3 light bulbs.
Here’s how, if you connect the 3 light bulbs parallelly with the car battery, it will allow 0.3A current to charge. This way the battery will not be damaged and the charging will be complete in no time.
Step 3: Let The Battery Charge
After connecting all the light bulbs, let the battery charge for 10-15 minutes. You shouldn’t fully charge the LiPo battery. This damages the cell and its performance.
Should I Try Charging With Another Battery?
Another easy and effective way to charge is to use similar LiPo batteries. In this method, you need to simply connect the battery with other LiPo batteries. Your LiPo battery will get charged by the other connected batteries.
You have to connect three AAA batteries in a series connection with the LiPo battery.
Now, why should you use three AAA batteries?
Let me do the math for you. Each triple-A battery has 1.5V. So together the three batteries will produce 4.5V. And a LiPo battery only requires 3.7V. So the three triple A batteries will charge the LiPo battery smoothly.
You should keep in mind, too much voltage will damage a battery. Taking care of a LiPo battery is especially important. And that also includes a proper storage of LiPo batteries. So always calculate before charging to avoid risks.
Does the Solar Panel Work?
This is the last option for you to charge the battery. That is to charge a LiPo battery by using a solar panel. Yes, that is possible.
However, you need a charger controller or a solar inverter. Without either of these two, you cannot charge the LiPo battery. If you are a lucky owner of a solar panel, you can charge any battery.
We don’t want any accidents.
When conducting any of these methods, make sure you have all the precautions. Because some of the processes might cause sparks or ignition. And dealing with batteries and wires are never safe.
There are some things you need to keep in mind while working with LiPo battery-
- Don’t charge more than one device while charging with a USB.
- If your battery draws more than 500A current, it’s not safe to charge without a charger.
- If you’re charging with a car, then do not leave the battery alone.
- It’s better not to charge a LiPo without a charger too frequently.
- Try and avoid fully charging a LiPo battery.
- Wear a safety mask and glass while dealing with a car battery.
Hopefully, if you follow all the instructions you’ll be able to charge LiPo batteries. Whenever and wherever you need to.
Question: What voltage should I charge my LiPo battery at?
Answer: A LiPo battery usually requires an average of 3.7V charge. However, you can charge it up to 4.2V maximum. And the minimum voltage requirement of the LiPo battery is 3.0V.
Question: Can you charge a LiPo battery with a normal charger?
Answer: It’s unsafe to charge a Lithium Polymer battery with any normal charger. Because these batteries have a higher chance of exploding. It’s better to use a LiPo battery charger.
Question: How long can you leave a LiPo battery fully charged?
Answer: You can leave a LiPo battery fully charged for 2-3 days at maximum. If you leave it for longer then the battery starts to get damaged. You will not be able to use the battery again until it loses some charge.
We hope by now you will be able to charge a battery without a charger. Knowing how to charge a LiPo battery without a charger is a useful skill.
This will help you save a lot of time and help you overcome any emergency situation. However, it’s safe to keep a clip charger or a LiPo charger at hand. Especially when you’re travelling.
Let us know which method you’ve used to charge a LiPo battery without a charger.
Until then, charge your life with positivity.