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The Complete Cell Phone Battery Guide

By December 19, 2019May 9th, 2022No Comments
The Complete Cell Phone Battery Guide

Mobile phone batteries that don’t adequately hold their charges can be frustrating, especially since we now depend on our smartphones for so many functions. For many, smartphones have replaced car maps and have replaced cameras. They’re also necessary for checking in to places like doctor’s offices, events, movies and more. It is aggravating to constantly need to have a charger or an external battery pack close by to prevent a phone from dying, especially if you are in the middle of your day and you have hours left of tasks to complete before you can fully recharge your phone’s battery at home.

You can prevent some of this by knowing more about how cell phone batteries work and cell phone battery capacity. It’s also important to know how to best care for your mobile phone’s battery to get the best use out of it. In this article, we’ll cover a lot of information about cell phone and smartphone batteries. We can help you make better buying choices, ultimately handling your phone more efficiently.

Whether you’re looking to improve cell phone battery life or to learn more about smartphone batteries, you’ve come to the right place. This article covers the major cell phone battery types, how to prevent your phone battery from dying and smartphone battery replacement.

Cell Phone Battery Types: How to Tell What Kind You Have

To understand the needs of your battery, it’s important to first know what kind of battery you’re using. We’ve provided a smartphone battery comparison for you below.

Generally, there are four different types of batteries that are used in cell phones:

  1. Nickel Cadmium (NiCd): This type of battery is most often only used in older cell phones. It is the least powerful.
  2. Nickel Metal Hybrid (NiMH): Nickel batteries are more powerful than the NiCd batteries. They are usually only used in older cell phones, as well.
  3. Lithium Ion (Li-ion): Li-ion batteries are more common types. They are consistently used in today’s phones and are even more powerful than the NiMH battery.
  4. Lithium Polymer (LiPo): Like the NiMH’s upgrade over the NiCd, the LiPo is an upgraded form of the lithium battery when compared to the Li-ion. It has the greatest power of all of the battery types mentioned here.

Because NiCds and NiMH batteries are out of date, it’s very likely that you aren’t using one in your cell phone anymore. Unless you’re using a very old model, your phone has a LiPo or Li-ion battery.

To figure out whether your phone uses a LiPo or a Li-ion battery, you can often simply look at the label on the battery itself. If you can’t find the label or if it has been removed, you can find the battery information in the user’s manual.

After you’ve figured out which battery you have, you’ll have a better idea of what effect it will have on your device.

Li-Ion Batteries Versus LiPo Batteries

Li-ion batteries and LiPo batteries are the two main battery types on the market today. Li-ion batteries are the most popular type of mobile phone among cellphone manufacturers; LiPo batteries are the most advanced cell phone batteries available to consumers.

1. Li-Ion Batteries

The Li-ion battery is one of today’s most popular types of cell phone batteries. It has been around the longest and was the first to be used in smartphones. Li-ion batteries are chemically made up of a positive electrode, a negative electrode and an electrolyte. The positive electrode is a lithium compound, such as lithium manganese oxide, lithium iron phosphate or lithium cobalt oxide. The negative electrode is usually graphite. The electrolyte is a carbonate, such as diethyl carbonate or ethylene carbonate.

There is an organic solvent between the two electrodes where the electrolyte is stored. To keep the battery in one piece, a metal case holds it together tightly. As a safety precaution, these batteries also feature a protection circuit that regulates the battery levels and voltage, keeping them within safe limits.

Li-ion batteries provide high energy density. Additionally, these batteries have a long-lasting shelf life and can be easily replaced by the user.

Although these batteries have many benefits, they do come with a few disadvantages. They make the phone heavier because of their heavier weight. When Li-ion batteries are used, the phone’s protection circuit can increase the battery’s cost. Compared to LiPo batteries, Li-ion batteries have a high self-discharge level. Their rectangular shape can be problematic for uniquely designed phones.

2. LiPo Batteries

LiPo batteries came after Li-ion batteries. They are very similar in terms of their components; however, there is a difference in the material between where the electrodes and the ions move (referred to as the “separator”). In a LiPo battery, the separator is made from a microporous polymer that is covered with an electrolytic gel.

The separator acts as a catalyst for the chemical process. Like Li-ion batteries, these batteries have a protection circuit to keep the voltage within a safe range. Unlike Li-ion batteries, however, they do not require a metal casing.

These batteries are growing in popularity for several reasons. For one, their self-discharge level is quite low. Second, their weight is significantly less than Li-ion batteries. These batteries also can come in a variety of shapes.

Despite their benefits, LiPo batteries do have some negatives. LiPo batteries have a lower energy density and can be more expensive. In comparison to the shelf life of Li-ion batteries, their shelf life is noticeably shorter. Finally, smartphone LiPo battery replacement cannot be performed by the users.

How to Make Your Phone Battery Last Longer on a Single Charge

If you’re wondering how to extend the life of your phone throughout the day, you can make several changes to optimize your phone’s power. These suggestions can be implemented by both iPhone or Android users. Below are some of the main energy-saving options available:

1. Dim Your Screen

One of the easiest ways to keep your phone charged throughout the day is to dim your screen. Regardless of the type of phone you use, an overly bright screen will drain the battery and increase the operating temperature of your phone. By lowering the phone’s temperature, you will extend your battery life and increase the phone’s life span.

2. Turn Off Location Services

A major drain on your phone is likely coming from your phone’s location services or its GPS function. These features complement directional apps, such as Google Maps. However, many other apps also utilize the GPS function, even if you don’t realize it. If you don’t need your phone to know your location, turn off location services. You’ll quickly reap the battery-saving benefits.

3. Cut Down on Your Use of the Vibrate Function

While many users have probably had the vibrate function on their phone on since they first took it out of the box, it’s wise to occasionally put the phone on ring. While it might not be obvious, a ringtone takes up less battery than a vibration. So, when you don’t need to have your phone on vibrate, turn on your ring tone or simply set it to silent mode if you don’t need to hear it at all.

4. Say No to Push Notifications

While push notifications can occasionally be helpful, they often provide you with distracting information that you likely don’t need. Did you know that they could also be harming your battery life throughout the day? Anytime your phone lights up as it receives a push notification, this drains the battery. Some push notifications also come with a vibration or a ringtone, further affecting battery life. Get rid of most (if not all) push notifications if you want to keep your phone’s battery running strong.

5. Disable Most (or All) Background Data

Background data can be a hidden source of battery drain on your device. Apps will continuously run even if you don’t have them on, which takes up your phone’s bandwidth. Background data energy drains are especially impacted by social media and email apps on your phone. In your settings, you can turn off all background data. Or, you can simply choose only to have a few choice apps running in the background. Whatever option you select, it’ll use less battery power.

How to Make Your Phone Battery Live Longer

If you want to improve your cell phone battery life beyond just keeping your daily battery use low, try these methods for increasing how long your phone’s battery will last in the long term. Here are some of the main tips to extend your battery’s lifespan:

1. Reduce Battery Discharge

Lithium-ion batteries are meant to keep the same charge capacity between 300 to 500 charge/discharge cycles. However, batteries typically fall to 80% of their battery capacity within only 100 charge/discharge cycles.

To make sure you get the most out of your battery, you want to limit how often the battery discharges completely. While some may believe that it’s best to allow the battery to get down to 0% before charging it again, any phone battery charging guide will tell you that waiting this long could actually harm the battery. Instead of waiting, always keep your phone partially charged, restoring it to 100% battery if it starts to get too low.

2. Avoid the Heat

Keeping your phone out of the heat is one of those long-term actions you can take to make sure that the phone doesn’t overheat and become damaged. Direct sunlight, for example, can quickly cause phones to exceed their 113° Fahrenheit limit. If the phone is exposed to these conditions often enough, the cell phone battery will degrade faster. This ultimately reduces the amount of charge it can hold.

To protect your phone, keep it out of direct sunlight. This is especially important during the summer months, as surface temperatures can easily reach 158° Fahrenheit. Leaving it in these conditions for an extended period will lead to your battery losing its charge capacity significantly faster.

3. Don’t Let Apps Pile Up

Although it’s tempting to stockpile apps that you might use in the future, it’s better to prevent your apps from piling up unnecessarily. Having many useful or fun apps on your phone may seem like a good idea in theory (because what if you get bored or really need to read a review about a restaurant in Europe?). Over the long run, however, your phone’s battery will thank you for being judicious about the apps you allow on your cell phone. Having multiple apps will add to your background data and increase the drain on your battery. An easy way to cut down on these types of apps is to eliminate apps that serve the same purpose. Do you need two weather apps? Three news apps? You can save your battery (and your time) by preventing your phone from repeatedly showing you the same notifications from different sources.

4. Don’t Fast Charge

While many phones now have fast charge options available that allow you to charge your phone in a few minutes, you should avoid using them as much as possible. The fast charge feature is OK if you’re genuinely in a rush, but don’t use it regularly.

The reason to use fast charge features sparingly comes down to the loss of storage capacity that occurs when a battery is charged. When lithium ions and lithium metals are shuttled between electrodes within lithium-ion batteries, they move slowly. When you charge at a slower rate, you let the shuttling process occur at its natural rate. In turn, they fully complete their movements. By charging more slowly, you’ll also increase the capacity of your battery’s charge.

Whether fast charging or slow charging, it’s important to remember to unplug your phone when it reaches 100%. Repeatedly overcharging your phone will damage its battery. Many newer chargers, like those that come with fast-charging phones, are built to be “smart” and automatically avoid overcharging your phone. However, you will see the best results for the life of your battery if you unplug your phone when charging is complete.

The Longest Lasting Phone with the Best Battery Life

Several smartphone options on the market today have superior battery life when compared to older phones and other popular phones on the market. When it comes to battery life, look at the milliamp-hour (mAh) of the phone. The higher the mAh, the longer the battery life and the higher the battery capacity:

  • Moto G Power: These cell phones come with a 5000mAh battery capacity. In one test, the Moto G Power phone ran for over 16 hours of phone activity. If you want a long-lasting phone with an extended battery life, the Moto G Power is an excellent option.
  • Huawei Honor X10 Max: This large-screen phone has 5000mAh along with energy-efficient software.
  • Huawei Mate XS: Another Huawei model, this “phablet” has 4500mAh for extra-long use. This tablet-sized smartphone was released in February 2020 and has a giant 8-inch screen.
  • Samsung Galaxy S21 Ultra: The Samsung Galaxy battery type is a 5000mAh battery. It has been optimized for 16 (or more) hours of web browsing.
  • iPhone 13 Pro Max: The iPhone 13 Pro Max has the longest battery life of all iPhones. In a recent continuous usage test, this model’s battery lasted almost 10 hours. This is a huge difference between the iPhone 11, which lasted a little over four hours, and the iPhone SE, which lasted 3 hours and 38 minutes of continuous use.
  • Motorola One Fusion+: The One Fusion+ 5000mAh battery function allows this smartphone to perform over 15 hours of extended activity on a single charge.

Phones With Removable or Replaceable Batteries

Phones with removable batteries might seem like a thing of the past, but some phones still include them. If you like to have multiple batteries on hand to ensure you always have a charge, one of the following older phones might be perfect for you:

  • LG V20: The LG V20 comes with a removable battery, along with a headphone jack and 64GB storage. It also has a dual 16 megapixel rear-facing camera that has a 120 degree wide-angle lens. LG makes several models with removable batteries, including the LG V10 and LG G5.
  • Moto E6: The Moto E6 has 16GB. It also comes with camera tools, features a lightweight design and has a water repellant coating.
  • Samsung Galaxy S5: The Samsung Galaxy S5 is the last Samsung smartphone produced with a removable battery. Even though it’s a little older, it comes with HDR camera mode, quad-core CPU, dust and water resistance and a heartrate monitor.

Many of these phones are no longer being manufactured, but there’s a good chance you can find one at brick-and-mortar retailers or online at The Whiz Cells’ eBay store.

How to Replace a Worn-out Android or Apple iPhone Battery

If you don’t have a removable battery, your cell phone battery replacement is going to be more involved than simply turning off your phone, taking out an old battery and replacing it with a new one. As non-removable cell phone batteries are not meant to be removed by the user, it’s recommended to go with an authorized repair service center. If you do decide to do it yourself, there are a few tips you can follow.

Android Battery Replacement

Android phones have unique features that play into their repair. For this reason, it will be important to research the intricacies of your specific phone before getting yourself into a DIY smartphone battery replacement. After researching the phone, follow these general tips if you have your heart set on repairing the phone yourself:

  1. Turn the phone off before you begin the repair.
  2. If you’re replacing a lithium battery, make sure it’s below 25% battery life. (A charged battery can explode or catch on fire if punctured by accident.)
  3. If your battery is swollen, do not attempt a repair yourself. It may be more volatile and is likely to harm you.

The basic tools you need include:

  • A flat opening tool
  • A heat gun to melt the adhesives
  • A screwdriver
  • Tweezers
  • A suction handle
  • Replacement adhesive to glue the phone back together

iPhone Battery Replacement

iPhone battery replacements are fairly inexpensive and are free with a warranty or AppleCare+. Due to the iPhone’s design, we recommend that you send your phone in to be repaired, rather than trying to do it yourself. You can find plenty of information on this process through Apple Support.

Sell Your Old Phone to The Whiz Cells

Need more information about how often to replace cell phone batteries? Feel free to contact The Whiz Cells; we’re happy to help.

If your old phone is past any cell phone battery repair options and you’re ready to trade it in for a new one that has a better battery life, consider selling it to The Whiz Cells. With The Whiz Cells, you’ll receive fast cash with our Stupid Fast Payment. You’ll also receive top dollar when you sell your old phone to us. We’re dedicated to recycling and reusing old phones and devices. We’re also passionate about keeping e-waste out of landfills and prolonging the lives of electronic devices.

After selling your phone, you can purchase a new one through The Whiz Cells. Shop the cell phones we have available today. Visit our eBay Store to browse our selection of phones.