Two-way radios are your lifeline and having a well-performing battery means your radio is powered when you need it most. Batteries need special care to keep them lasting longer and performing better. Whether it's storing, charging, or operating your battery, proper care must be taken.
By following these suggested tips you can help protect your rechargeable two-way radio batteries and enhance their performance and life span over time.
Caring for Your Two-Way Radio Battery
On average, two-way radio batteries typically last around 18-24 months. This depends on how you use and care for your battery. Different battery chemistries are also dependent on how long your radio battery is expected to last.
Follow these simple steps below to extend the life of your two-way radio battery.
- Charge your new battery overnight before using it. This is referred to as initializing and allows you to obtain the highest battery capacity. For optimal performance, Motorola recommends charging a new battery for 14 to 16 hours before initial use.
- Store in well-ventilated, cool, and dry locations. Batteries stored in these locations have a shelf life of up to 2 years depending on the battery chemistry.
- Batteries that are placed in storage for more than two months should be fully discharged and recharged.
- Do not leave your fully charged radio in the charger when not charging. Overcharging will shorten battery life.
- Only charge a battery when it needs it. If the radio battery is not fully discharged, do not recharge it. We recommend carrying a spare battery or using our high-capacity lithium-polymer batteries when you require extensive talk times. (Up to 20 hours).
- Use a conditioning charger. Battery analyzers and conditioning chargers show you how much battery life you have, telling you when it's time to buy new ones. Conditioning chargers recondition the battery back to its normal capacity, ultimately extending its life. Motorola IMPRES chargers are often used to improve battery chemistry.
Storing Your Two-Way Radio Battery When Not in Use
Storing your two-way radio battery for long periods of time require certain maintenance or you could risk your battery going into a 0 voltage state making it harder to revive.
When storing your two-way radio battery follow these steps to keep your battery chemistry from fading and ready for when you need to use it again.
- Store batteries in a cool, dry environment. When you're not using your battery on a radio, store them at room temperature and in low humidity. Your typical air-conditioned office is ideal. A cooler/ cold environment (5C-15C) is better for long-term storage but not essential.
- Do not freeze a battery or store it in conditions below 0C. If a battery is frozen, allow it to warm above 5C before charging.
- Store batteries in a partially discharged state (40%). Batteries from Waveband Communications will be partially discharged to about this level when received. If a battery is in storage for more than 6 months, it should be cycled and partially discharged, then returned to storage.
- A battery that has been in storage will need to be fully charged before it is used again. The battery may need to have several charge/ discharge cycles before it provides the expected shift life. NiCd and NiMH batteries may exhibit very low capacity until cycled a few times.
- When a battery is in service, avoid hot temperatures. Do not leave the radio/battery in a parked car (or trunk) for an extended period. Do not charge the battery in a hot environment. Avoid excessively dusty or wet conditions when possible.
- If a battery is excessively warm (40C or higher), allow it to reach room temperature before charging.
If you follow the steps above, your battery will be ready to use when it's time to come out of storage. Store in the proper conditions and temperatures to help prevent chemistry fade.
This article was last updated on June 8th, 2021.
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