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24V LI-Ion battery problems.

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  • 24V LI-Ion battery problems.

    I have been having a problem with my 24v LI-Ion batteries. At times they seem to hold a charge just fine, but other times (seems more often than not) they die within 10 minutes of use. I have had the kit for about 3 months and have cycled them numerous times but it only seems to be getting worse. They will have a strong charge, even reading 3 or 4 bars on the meter, only to die instantly with no warning. I have heard about this "rapid-discharge cutoff issue" and was wondering what it was and what can be done about it. Please help, I love the tools but can't handle the battery life problem.

    Thank You,
    Dave

  • #2
    Re: 24V LI-Ion battery problems.

    If you are beyond your 90 day return policy, you will have to take the batteries to an authorized service center for repair of replacement.

    The good news is its free repair and parts.
    http://www.cgiconnection.com/download

    Comment


    • #3
      Re: 24V LI-Ion battery problems.

      dinkster,

      What are you doing when the batteries die? Sometimes when I am doing something really taxing, like drilling in concrete, the battery will overload. To reset it you just stick in back in the charger and it will reset and you can use it again. I think it is the chip in the battery keeping it from over heating. It sounds like your is doing it a lot. You might want to try and replace them but I wouldn't get rid of the tools. I love mine and wouldn't trade them for anything.

      Comment


      • #4
        Re: 24V LI-Ion battery problems.

        There have been many threads and posts in the Power Tool forum over the last several months regarding people having battery problems with the 24V LI tools. Many people including myself exchanged the entire set(HD has no system for only exchanging the batteries) and the problem went away. Recently one of the forum members placed a post stating he had talked with Ridgid Rep who told him that a bad batch of batteries were shipped and if one has a problem to exchange whatever set purchased at HD. I was able to exchange my set after three months because I had complained about them prior and tried to order replacements.
        I believe the new ones are working correctly but have not used them very much yet. I would try to replace the set at HD and if they won't do that you will probably have to take them to a repair center.

        Comment


        • #5
          Re: 24V LI-Ion battery problems.

          Originally posted by dinkster72 View Post
          I have been having a problem with my 24v LI-Ion batteries. At times they seem to hold a charge just fine, but other times (seems more often than not) they die within 10 minutes of use. I have had the kit for about 3 months and have cycled them numerous times but it only seems to be getting worse. They will have a strong charge, even reading 3 or 4 bars on the meter, only to die instantly with no warning. I have heard about this "rapid-discharge cutoff issue" and was wondering what it was and what can be done about it. Please help, I love the tools but can't handle the battery life problem.

          Thank You,
          Dave
          I'd return 'em. Otherwise i'd give the tip to *completetly* discharge the batteries before a new charge....but since they're dying i dont think its possible to completely discharge.
          Oh, wait. I think this would apply to NimH batteries only.
          http://www.reconditioned-power-tools.com

          Comment


          • #6
            Re: 24V LI-Ion battery problems.

            Originally posted by Georg View Post
            I'd return 'em. Otherwise i'd give the tip to *completetly* discharge the batteries before a new charge....but since they're dying i dont think its possible to completely discharge.
            Oh, wait. I think this would apply to NimH batteries only.
            That only applies to NiMh or NiCd...and you shouldn't even discharge them completely.

            Lithium Ion batteries should never be discharged below a certain level...far from empty. Having said that, equipment that runs off rechargeable lithium batteries will have protection built in to avoid overdischarging. It will either be in the equipment, or in the battery.

            Comment


            • #7
              Re: 24V LI-Ion battery problems.

              I'm a little confused. I have the Lithium 24 volt hammerdrill and circ saw. The tools will be running fine and then just start to make a clicking noise. This does not seem to be premature, but should I just recharge them constantly or is it ok to let them get to the point of clicking? If they should not be discharged below a certain level, how do you know when that is? I thought it was ok to just use them until they are dead, and then recharge them. I would like to complement some of you guys on your knowledge of power tools (especially you Disaster), I sure am learning alot about the tools I use pretty much 7 days a week. Thanks.

              Comment


              • #8
                Re: 24V LI-Ion battery problems.

                Originally posted by kelpike View Post
                I'm a little confused. I have the Lithium 24 volt hammerdrill and circ saw. The tools will be running fine and then just start to make a clicking noise. This does not seem to be premature, but should I just recharge them constantly or is it ok to let them get to the point of clicking?
                I've never experienced a clicking sound. Not sure what it would have to do with the battery level. Does the tool lose power first? Do you experience it with all the tools?

                Originally posted by kelpike View Post
                If they should not be discharged below a certain level, how do you know when that is? I thought it was ok to just use them until they are dead, and then recharge them. I would like to complement some of you guys on your knowledge of power tools (especially you Disaster), I sure am learning alot about the tools I use pretty much 7 days a week. Thanks.
                I'm guessing the batteries in the Ridgid tools are probably similar chemistry to the ones used in DeWalts. DeWalts use A123 cells. These are Li-Fe cells are more robust to high current drains that occur with tools, can be charged at a faster rate, and are more robust to being drained down to low voltages.

                Normal Li-Ion cells peak at 4.2 volts and will be damaged below 2.8 volts (usually protected by circuit that keeps them above 3 volts.) A123 cells peak at 3.6 volts but can go down to 2 volts (where the voltage and power drops off quickly.) They are pretty robust and are supposed to be able to handle short dips to 1 volt. Because of the drop-off (and obvious power loss when it happens) tool manufacturers might not put in the protection circuit that normal Lithium cells have. I have experienced this dropoff with the Ridgid batteries. You should be fine if you swap the batteries out anytime you feel a loss of power and never allow the batteries to power the flashlight till it goes dead.

                Here is a link, from the RC world, that discusses the differences in batteries.

                One word of caution. It says NiMh can be discharged to 0. This is only true with individual cells. If you discharge a NiMh or NiCd pack (which is many cells in series) to 0 it is likely one will go dead before another and this can cause a voltage reversal across a cell, which will fry it. The general rule is .1-.2 volts per cell to be safe so a typical 18 volt pack shouldn't be drawn below 1.5 volts...safer if it is kept above 3 volts.

                http://www.flyelectric.ukgateway.net/lithium-a123.htm

                P.S. I am by no means a tool expert. I'm an mechanical engineer who has a lot of mechanical and electrical design experience and a hobbiest with too many hobbies and never enough time.
                Last edited by Disaster; 04-27-2007, 11:50 PM.

                Comment


                • #9
                  Re: 24V LI-Ion battery problems.

                  Well I only have the hammerdrill and the circ saw. I purchased the drill with one battery from Home Depot brand new for $95 off the clearance table. The manager told me it was on the clearance rack by itself because the charger was stolen. Instead of being smart about it and buying a charger from Ebay, I purchased the charger, battery, and bag kit for another $200. I was really happy with its performance so I purchased the cordless saw. I have the older style Dewalt cordless circ saw, but the Ridgid absolutely blows it away. I also use Dewalt cordless drills, and the cordless sawzall, which are all getting tired. So I am going to slowly switch over to the Ridgid line. I am about to purchase the jigsaw, then the planer, then sawzall. I have not had any of the battery problems that I keep reading about and when I called the Ridgid tech support about a warranty question, I asked if they were planning to discontinue the 24 volt line (also read in a thread) and she said no. As far as the clicking sound I get, the drill and the saw just completely stop and the clicking sound starts. I do not notice any drop in performance from either tool, they just stop, then start to click.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Re: 24V LI-Ion battery problems.

                    Originally posted by kelpike View Post
                    As far as the clicking sound I get, the drill and the saw just completely stop and the clicking sound starts. I do not notice any drop in performance from either tool, they just stop, then start to click.
                    Hmmm...haven't experienced that yet...but maybe I haven't pushed the batteries to empty in the drill or circular saw. I did go through a couple batteries in the reciprocating saw and there was a big drop off in power at the end.


                    I have seen RC car controllers, with lithium power protection circuits, that operate a bit like that. They turn off the power when the voltage drops below 3 volts. When the power goes off, the voltage will climb up above 3 volts and they will apply power again....but then the load draws the power back down and they switch off again. They sometimes will switch the power on and off like this...similar to the clicking you mention.

                    Perhaps there is a lithium protection circuit in the Ridgid battery that is doing something similar. I wonder if all batteries are the same or if Ridgid made any changes, such as modifying or adding a protection circuit?
                    Last edited by Disaster; 04-28-2007, 01:13 AM.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Re: 24V LI-Ion battery problems.

                      THE FOLLOWING INSTRUCTIONS ARE FOR RIDGID
                      24V LITHIUM-ION BATTERY PACKS AND THE 24V
                      RIDGID LITHIUM-ION CHARGER.
                      CHARGING THE BATTERY PACK
                      NOTE: New 24V lithium-ion battery packs will not work
                      without first being charged. Before first time use, charge
                      the battery pack to activate it.
                      It is not necessary to drain the battery pack completely
                      before recharging. Lithium-ion battery packs have no
                      “memory” and can be recharged at any time. It is therefore
                      possible to charge the battery pack before extended usage
                      even if the battery pack is not completely drained of charge.
                      Use the charge level indicator to determine the amount of
                      charge in the battery pack.
                      Lithium-ion batteries deliver fade free power for their entire
                      run time. 24V lithium-ion tools will not gradually lose power
                      due to decreasing battery charge. Instead, power from the
                      battery pack will drop from full to zero once the full charge
                      has been drained from the battery. Once this happens, the
                      tool’s power drops from full to zero, and recharging of the
                      battery is required

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Re: 24V LI-Ion battery problems.

                        As far as the clicking sound I get, the drill and the saw just completely stop and the clicking sound starts. I do not notice any drop in performance from either tool, they just stop, then start to click.[/QUOTE]i have the same problem.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Re: 24V LI-Ion battery problems.

                          Originally posted by 99zr2 View Post
                          As far as the clicking sound I get, the drill and the saw just completely stop and the clicking sound starts. I do not notice any drop in performance from either tool, they just stop, then start to click.
                          i have the same problem.[/QUOTE]

                          If it isn't happening prematurely perhaps it is just the batteries way of saying...time for a charge.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Re: 24V LI-Ion battery problems.

                            Hello, I have the XLI combo kit, the XLI drill kit, with a total of four 24volt ridgid lithium ion batteries and all of them do the same, when you overload the tool, or run the batteries down, the low voltage protection circuit in the battery senses this and breaks the circuit to the battery terminals to shut the tool off to prevent overdischarging or overheating due to excessive current draw. If you check the charge meter the first led will flash on one time when the battery has been discharged to the minimum safe voltage(just plain run down like a flashlight), or has been overloaded (like stalling your drill or jamming your circular saw). You just about can't hurt these batteries with this protection feature. I have found that these cells are the same ones used in the millwaukee V28 and the 18 volt lithium Makita batteries, They are lithium magnesium chemistry and are 3 amp hr. capacity and have a maximum discharge rate of 20xcap. or 60 amps and can be discharged to 2.5 volts per cell and charged to 4.2 volts per cell. I had a friend that had a defective one and I believe the defect was in the safety circuit and not the battery cells. It would charge to about 3 bars and then the red and green lights on the charger would start flashing indicating a defective battery. So I took it off charger and used it under heavy load and under light load and it just up and quit like it was run down but when I put it on the charger it reset it and the charge indicator showed 3 bars so I put it back in the drill and loaded it slightly and it just quit again so we exchanged it for another one and every thing has been fine. My batterys will fade at the last few seconds of their charge, right before the low voltage protection circuit cuts out so I know their discharged. The best thing to do is compare one battery with the other and then you can tell if somthing isn,t right with one of them. I did this with my four batteries when I started reading about the battery problems that people were having. I tested my batteries by charging all four of them and taking my maxselect planer and putting a tie wrap around the trigger and timing how long each battery would run it till shut down occured which was 18 minutes and 30 seconds and all four batteries were within 15 seconds of that so that showed me that the batteries had the proper capacity. Then I overloaded them with my drill by using a leather glove on my hand and with the drill in high gear I grabbed the chuck and lugged the drill down till the battery tripped ( I was carefull not to overheat the drill, I did this in about 5 seconds) and I repeated this with the other three and they behaved the same way as the first. Hope this info was helpfull.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Re: 24V LI-Ion battery problems.

                              Yeah I have had the clicking issue as well and yes the battery is being overloaded. I also believe i have a bad battery. I have been to hd once and exchanged the whole set due to one of my batteries would not charge. Now four months later I have one battery that works fine and one that seems fine sometimes and then sometimes it will click right away. I will try to charge it and as soon as it put it on the charger have 3 bars of power. I havn't tried the reset theory but I am a little dissappointed in general. I believe if I buy a 24 volt set as opposed to 18 volt the battery life would be unsurpassed. At first this was true but now I just think its like buying a brand new car that just came out. YOu might get lucky or you might just get bent over.
                              Last edited by dandydan; 07-15-2007, 01:43 PM.

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