No announcement yet.

Keep battery attached to tool when not in use?

  • Filter
  • Time
  • Show
Clear All
new posts

  • Keep battery attached to tool when not in use?

    This question could apply to any brand of cordless power tools. What are the pros/cons of keeping the battery attached to the tool while stored away until next use? I was thinking there would be less chance of damage (to both the tool and battery) if you leave the battery attached and you're not constantly removing and reattaching it. Thoughts?

  • #2
    I almost always just leave the battery in the tool. I never purposely leave a battery in a plugged in charger when the charging cycle is completed.
    The Leading Cause Of Injury In Older Men Is Them Thinking They Are Still Young Men.


    • #3
      If I were using them regularly, or was in the midst of a weeks-long project I would leave the battery attached. But for me, my tool use is between longer stretches of time, so the tools now are in the storage cabinet where they won't collect dust and dirt. I keep the batteried separately, and keep a note showing when they were last charged. Understand that I'm not in the trades and that I bought my first cordless tools back in 2005 (they are all Ridgid, with the exception of a couple of Ryobi 'plus-4' tools lithium tools.

      I've never noticed any drain on the battery when I leave them attached. Wish I could say the same for my measuring tools, like calipers, digital protractor, and moisture meter, all which take button batteries which seemingly drain if left in for any reasonable length of time.



      • #4
        Sometimes I leave fully charged batteries sit on the charger for days before I remove them. Usually it is when I have another one needing charging, then I remove that one and put in the depleted one. Probably not a good idea?

        Also I store my tools in stackable tool boxes, and half of these boxes are in my SUV. In south Florida the car gets hot when parked and locked and I think it's not good for the batteries to experience high temps, but the alternative is to bring all batteries inside for all jobs and at night which is not practical.

        Do you charge your batteries only when the batteries is low (one bar) or top them off even if it may be 2 bars 3 bars left if convenient?


        • #5
          "Do you charge your batteries only when the batteries is low (one bar) or top them off even if it may be 2 bars 3 bars left if convenient?"

          Oh God don't open that can of worms. :-)

          This thread will live on forever now as that debate is never concluded to the satisfaction of all perspectives.

          Having said that the Ryobi 6 port charger that I have had for over 8 years says you can leave your batteries plugged in 24/7 and just pluck them off as needed. The charger will monitor and maintain as needed.

          Does the RIDGID multi-port charger allow for that?
          Does RIDGID even make a multi-port charger?

          I think Ryobi is on their 3rd generation model now. I have the 1st gen model.

          I don't leave batteries on there all the time but if a I have a couple to charge I just plug them in and it sequentially charges them in short order. I don't worry about leaving them on the charger for a day or so should I forget about them. And lately that seems to happen a lot.

          As far as when to charge and how much I look at the battery management that our Chevy Volt follows for its battery. The battery is 16KW in size but you only get to use about the top 10.5KW. The bottom end has a reserve capacity of a couple KW and rock bottom is the level they don't want to drain the battery below which is around 3KW but that's a guess.

          So being a PHEV once you drain the 'normal' battery capacity of 10.5KW the car will automatically switch over to running the ICE and powering the car that way. 300 miles later (if you had a full tank of 9.6 gallons) the ICE would be dead and the computer would switch back to the battery to use that 3KW of reserve it as hanging on to. Enough to get you another ~10 miles which I guess they figure you should be able to find gasoline within 10 miles in most places in the Country. I know there are plenty where you can't, and some are less than 15 miles from me, but in reality there are not too many places without a gas station within 10 or 12 miles.

          Anyway, their strategy is don't drain the battery down to within the last ounce of its life, more like 40%, and recharge from there normally. I've read and I know it's been discussed here that following this strategy is a path to long battery life for cordless tools too. It must work because our Volt is 11 years old and still has the same traction battery and it still gets 35 miles on a charge on an average day. In the dead of Winter battery capacity is affected just as it is with a cordless tool battery. But 35 miles was all the range that was claimed when it was new so it has not lost a step the way I see it. That car has been a worthwhile investment. We do all our charging at home and my energy monitor tracks all the power used by the car charger. It costs on average $9 a month to keep the car topped off and ready to go. When the battery is at 0% capacity it takes about 3.5 hours to get back to full charge.

          I don't know about you but $108 of gasoline wouldn't take me very far even in a car that got 40 MPG. That would be roughly 1000 miles with regular gas at $4/gallon.
          In my pickup forget it, I usually fill up at 1/4 tank and it costs $100 to top off that 36 gallon tank. 3/4 of a tank or 27 gallons will take me about 350 miles.
          That same $108 in electric gets us over 2400 miles in the Volt. The Volt is the perfect car for short trips, commutes to work or school, etc. For us the nearest shopping center/mall or big box store is 14 miles away, so just within the battery range of the Volt. So I use the Volt if I need to go to Lowes or HD or BJs (no Costco within 40 miles of us) and don't need to bring something big or heavy back with me. That trip will cost about $1.35 in the Volt. But that would be 2 gallons of gas in the pickup or about $8 at todays' prices. It adds up after a couple trips.

          I know. I got WOT, sorry about that.

          Click image for larger version

Name:	volt charger.png
Views:	1329
Size:	19.4 KB
ID:	753968
          "It's a table saw, do you know where your fingers are?" ? Bob D. 2004
          "?ǝɹɐ sɹǝƃuıɟ ɹnoʎ ǝɹǝɥʍ ʍouʞ noʎ op `ʍɐs ǝlqɐʇ ɐ s,ʇı"



          • #6
            I have typically charged my Ridgid batteries when only two LED indicators light up.
            If you drain the Ridgid battery to "completely empty" there is a possibility the charger will not
            recognize the battery and indicate "battery failure".

            I am mixed when it comes to leaving the battery in a tool.
            I leave batteries in the Ridgid flashlights and some other tools I use often.
            The tools that I rarely touch, the batteries are removed.

            I have experienced a dead battery or low battery after leaving it in a tool, but I suspect that is
            due to the internal battery resistance discharging it.

            Cactus Man


            • #7
              I tend to remove batteries when I won't be using the tool any more that day. It only takes a second to plug it back in. I know it's easier to deal with in a fixed location like a shop but that's what I do.

              For my DeWalt batteries if I take them out of the shop I have caps for the battery terminals. I bought a bunch of the DeWalt FlexVolt battery caps which are intended as caps for the 60v batteries. I guess because of their higher voltage they need the caps for transport. Anyway, I found a dozen of them on eBay for dirt cheap so I bought them to use on my 20V Max batteries. The 20v batteries won't accept the FlexVolt battery cap as is. There are two tabs you have to cut off so the cap will slip onto the 20V battery. but that takes all of 30 seconds. Then the bright red cap slides on the 20V battery protecting all the connections. You can toss it in your tool bucket or what have you and no worries about shorting the battery out or debris getting into the contact areas. I think the caps cost me about $1.20 each including shipping. Came in a box of 12 and I only have 6 DeWalt batteries so I modified a coupe for my brother in law.

              If you look at the two photos below you can see the two tabs I removed. I just cut them with a pair of side-cutters and used a file to smooth it out flush.

              Click image for larger version

Name:	20210625_132818 (Medium).jpg
Views:	129
Size:	261.4 KB
ID:	753973Click image for larger version

Name:	20210625_132839 (Medium).jpg
Views:	105
Size:	238.2 KB
ID:	753974
              Last edited by Bob D.; 09-23-2022, 08:33 PM.
              "It's a table saw, do you know where your fingers are?" ? Bob D. 2004
              "?ǝɹɐ sɹǝƃuıɟ ɹnoʎ ǝɹǝɥʍ ʍouʞ noʎ op `ʍɐs ǝlqɐʇ ɐ s,ʇı"