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Old 12-17-12, 06:03 AM   #11
Mikesolar
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I'm looking for a DIY idea to rehabilitate the dead lithium batteries. It can be done with other types and I just had 2 of my Makita batteries croak on me and they were not old.

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Old 12-17-12, 06:56 AM   #12
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I've heard about blasting nimh batteries with a high voltage to revive them, and desulfating lead acid batteries. However, I'm not aware of of any process to revive lithium batteries.
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Old 12-17-12, 07:51 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mikesolar View Post
I'm looking for a DIY idea to rehabilitate the dead lithium batteries. It can be done with other types and I just had 2 of my Makita batteries croak on me and they were not old.
I've had the compact lithium Makita batteries "die", same with the DeWalts... the cells are still just fine but the battery drops in to a fail safe mode, on the Makita that happens if you try to run the battery 100% dead, for example you are screwing in a screw and it starts turning slowly, you keep going, the drill stops and you keep forcing that screw in that last half inch, you then take the battery off the tool and put it on the charger, the broken battery light comes on, sometimes you can connect a full battery to the dead battery for a few minutes and get enough power in it that the charger will recognize it and charge it but a lot of the time it's the battery management system that is built in to the battery that has tripped and is sending a signal to the charger saying that one or more cells in the pack were drawn down and might now be damaged/a fire hazard and that it should not be charged.

On DeWalt batteries this will happen if you are doing something like powering an electric bike and you only have a single pack on the bike, then switch on the speed controller without a pre-charge resister, the sudden load from the speed controller can be more then the fast blow fuse in the BMS can handle, that fuse is sealed in epoxy, in the BMS, solution to this is not to put a huge load that makes the battery think it's being shorted out.

You can still charge these "dead" batteries, but the BMS will tell the charger that they are not safe to charge, so charging them is best done off of another battery or in parallel with another battery, that is how I charge the mass of lithium battery cells for my lawn mower, I plug the block of cells in to the charger then plug a regular lithium battery in to the charger to make the charger turn on.

If used normally I've never had a battery fail.

Last edited by Ryland; 12-17-12 at 08:00 PM..
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Old 12-18-12, 04:13 PM   #14
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Quote:
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I'm looking for a DIY idea to rehabilitate the dead lithium batteries. It can be done with other types and I just had 2 of my Makita batteries croak on me and they were not old.
PLEASE DO NOT TRY TO REVIVE A "DEAD" LITHIUM CELL!!!

Just send it back for warranty service (if new-ish) or try to get the manufacturer to replace or repair it for a discount (if out of warranty).

Unlike conventional compact batteries, lithium cells are inherently a fire hazard waiting to happen! If you overcharge them, they overheat. If they overheat, they go BOOM! They are much more volatile than their nickel-based counterparts. Computer and cell phone manufacturers have recalled over 50 MILLION lithium-ion batteries due to risk of fire and explosion. FWIW, manufacturers don't recall products for maybe something might happen risk, they recall products because they were sued when it did happen... you've seen fight club, havent you?

For those of you who are occasional power tool users, stick to nickel-based as long as you can. You can get replacement cells through batteries plus or other refurbishers. Lithium cells last longer if you use them regularly because when they completely discharge they short out and cannot be recharged. If left half full, most will last 6 months until they self-discharge. Some of the newest designs will last up to a year left in their box, after that it's new battery time.

If you use them regularly, there are a few things to keep in mind:

1. Lithium cells hate being hot. If you're talking on your cell phone and it starts getting warmer than your ear, plug it into a power source. If you're using a cordless tool and you can feel the battery heating up, change batteries. People have been injured from talking on their phone too long.

2. Lithium powered tools don't run down slowly like a nickel-based tool before they give out, they just suddenly stop. When this happens, don't try to milk any more charge out of the battery. It's done, swap batteries. The manufacturers have installed circuitry into the batteries to try to make them live longer and work safely. Disregarding the built-in protection circuit will certainly shorten your battery life.

Last edited by jeff5may; 12-18-12 at 04:16 PM..
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Old 12-30-12, 09:01 PM   #15
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I ended up buying rigid brand drill and driver after talking to coworkers and reading many reviews. They seems nice so far. A little heavy but have actual castings for housing not just plastic. And have a lifetime service agreement which means you need to do some paperwork to get it but coworker has had batteries replaced all ready and very happy with it.

Will report back in 6 months and lots of hours of use
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Old 09-08-13, 08:02 PM   #16
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i love my craftsman lithium tools, so far 2+ years no problems.
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Old 09-08-13, 08:19 PM   #17
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Well, I have had the rigid set 9 months now. Had a few big projects not too many. This set came with standard size batteries but you can get bigger ones but expensive. When working hard batteries only last about 15 minutes but I work them and don't drain until fully dead but they recharge in 15 minutes too so kind of a pain but still working fine. The rigid impact is very loud, not sure how other brands are.

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Old 09-08-13, 09:55 PM   #18
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I've never heard of a quiet impact, its just the nature of the tool.
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Old 09-17-13, 10:19 PM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mikesolar View Post
I'm looking for a DIY idea to rehabilitate the dead lithium batteries. It can be done with other types and I just had 2 of my Makita batteries croak on me and they were not old.
PLEASE! For you and your family's sake DO NOT even think about the idea of rehabilitate lithium rechargeable batteries. They do not behave like NiCD or NiMH and they can explode with a big bang and with lots of heat (due to high storage medium densities, way down to the ionic exchange level).

about 10 yrs ago I read a Toshiba research paper RE: lithium ion battery technologies and development (Toshiba was, and probably still is, a prominent developer in rechargeable battery technologies incl. lithium ion type). It said that lithium batteries can never be "perfectly safe" due to their inherent instability in the form of manufacturing, and may fail in a violent way unlike NiCD or NiMH. The only benefit to the use of Lithium ion battery is that their capacity (density) is magnitudes more to that of NiCD, or even NiMH, with minimal memory effect.

Even with safety sensors built in to most Li battery packs these days, I still see lithium batteries fail on a regular basis: from genuine OE battery packs for cell phones to apple Mac laptops, to DS players and many, many more. The technology is still not mature but most machinery manufacturers bow to this technology mainly due to the hype out in the market, and also the public's thirst for high power density.

play it safe: just contact the tool manufacturer and see if they have some sort of exchange program or so (no harm asking) and get fresh replacement ones instead of fooling with old ones.

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Old 09-19-13, 09:01 PM   #20
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I've been through 4 craftsman 12v nextgen or whatever they call those things. Absolute trash. One was doa, two died within 6 months and the fourth made a year.
I'm currently using a 12v Makita drill, driver, impact (3 tools, 2 batteries) I can recommend these! We have a total of 8-10 batteries at work that have been great. And the tools have held up too.

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