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Dell Laptop Battery FAQ

Dell Laptop Battery FAQ

Frequently Asked Questions

QHow long does a Dell laptop battery last? When should I consider replacing mine?
QHow should I choose between two batteries with different Watt hours (Whr) available on one system?
QHow long am I able to use my Dell laptop on a fully charged battery?
QHow do I charge my Dell laptop battery?
QHow long does it take for a Dell laptop battery to fully recharge?
QWhat is ExpressChargeTM ?
QShould I totally discharge, then recharge my Dell laptop battery occasionally to make it last longer?
QCan a Dell laptop battery be "overcharged"?
QWhen docked or AC adapter is plugged into a wall outlet, am I using my battery charge?
QIs it easy to install a battery?
QWill Dell laptops accept non-Dell batteries?
QWhat is a modular bay battery?
QIf I install a modular bay battery, are my primary and modular bay batteries working at the same time to power my laptop computer?
Q For what use is the strip of LED lights on my battery?
QWhat does Dell recommend for battery storage for a long period of time?

QHow long does a Dell laptop battery last? When should I consider replacing mine?
AAll rechargeable batteries wear out with time and usage. As time and cumulative use increase, the performance will degrade. For the typical user, noticeable reduction in run time generally will be observed after 18 to 24 months. For a power user, reduction in run time generally may be experienced prior to 18 months. We recommend buying a new Dell laptop battery when the run time does not meet your needs.
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QHow should I choose between two batteries with different Watt hours (Whr) available on one system?
AHigher Watt hours (Whr) on the same system under the same operating conditions will generally deliver longer battery run time. For example, if you compare the same system, running the same applications, the 53Whr battery would provide approximately 65% more run time than the 32Whr battery.
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QHow long am I able to use my Dell laptop on a fully charged battery?
A

Many factors affect the amount of time that a portable computer battery can deliver power before it must be recharged. These factors include the configuration (processor, memory, etc.), types of applications being run and display brightness.

Dell uses industry standard benchmarks for battery run time claims. For more information on battery run times and benchmarks, the white paper, "Understanding Battery Life in Portable Computers" is available at:
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QHow do I charge my Dell laptop battery?
AThe battery charges in the laptop when the laptop is connected to an AC power source via the AC adapter.
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QHow long does it take for a Dell laptop battery to fully recharge?
AThe charge time varies depending on the system. If the system supports ExpressChargeTM , the battery typically will have greater than 80% charge after about an hour of charging, and fully charge in about 2 hours with the system off.
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QWhat is ExpressChargeTM ?
AFor a system advertised as having the ExpressChargeTM  feature, the battery typically will have greater than 80% charge after about an hour of charging and fully charge in about 2 hours with the system off.
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QShould I totally discharge, then recharge my Dell laptop battery occasionally to make it last longer?
ANo, discharging and charging does not increase the life of a Lithium Ion technology battery.
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QCan a Dell laptop battery be "overcharged"?
ANo, the battery is designed to stop using the charger when it reaches full charge.
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QWhen docked or AC adapter is plugged into a wall outlet, am I using my battery charge?
ANo.
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QIs it easy to install a battery?
AYes, very easy. First, make sure all open files are saved. Next, either attach the AC adapter directly to the laptop or set the system to "hibernate" mode or shut off. Release the latch on the current battery, and simply install the replacement battery.
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QWill Dell laptops accept non-Dell batteries?
ADell has a rigorous qualification process by which all Dell batteries are validated to ensure proper function, performance and safety. Some non-Dell batteries are available in the market with claims of compatibility with Dell systems. Dell cannot verify these claims, nor the safety of using them in a Dell system. Dell strongly encourages our customers to use only Dell laptop batteries advertised as appropriate for their laptop model. Only Dell laptop batteries come with a 1-year warranty, are engineered for optimal safety and performance for Dell systems, and are supported by Dell technical support for the length of the warranty period.
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QWhat is a modular bay battery?
AIn some laptop systems Dell offers a battery that can be used in the optical drive media bay (DVD/CD drive bay). This enables the use of two batteries, potentially extending the available run time.
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QIf I install a modular bay battery, are my primary and modular bay batteries working at the same time to power my laptop computer?
ANo, the modular bay battery is used first, then the system automatically switches to the primary battery. This is a deliberate design to allow the most amount of run time to remain in the primary battery in case the modular bay battery is removed and replaced with an optical drive.
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Q For what use is the strip of LED lights on my battery?
A

Most Dell batteries have an LED indicator that allows users to see how much run time and how much overall battery life are available at the touch of a button.

To check battery charge, press the button and the number of lights that appear will tell you charge status. If all lights appear, you have a fully charged battery. Each light that appears accounts for approximately 20% charge.

To check the battery health, press and hold the status button on the battery charge gauge for at least 3 seconds. If no lights appear, the battery is in good condition and approximately more than 80 percent of its original charge capacity remains. Each light represents incremental degradation. If five lights appear, approximately less than 60 percent of the charge capacity remains, and you should consider replacing the battery.
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QWhat does Dell recommend for battery storage for a long period of time?
A

When storing for more than 4 days these guidelines can better preserve the life of your battery:

  • Do not store batteries for long periods plugged into or attached to any power source. This includes AC adapters and laptop security carts plugged into an outlet.
  • Laptop batteries, including those stored in laptop systems, should maintain an Operational Storage Temperature of 0° to 35°C (32° to 95°F).
  • Batteries may be stored in the laptop or outside of the laptop.
  • Charge batteries before storing. The recommended charging time should not exceed 1 hour. Typically, this should charge the battery to between 80% and 100%. (Some discharge will take place over time. Stored batteries are expected to discharge 10-15% over a four month period, for your information.)
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