Battery - how to treat to expand lifetime (Optimal Charging Tips)

Two more things to extend battery life: Keep heat away from your battery as elevated temperatures speed up ageing of the cells. But don’t operate it in the cold: Charging or discharging the battery well below -10 C might cause non-reversable damage to the electrodes.

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I’ve tried no end of the tricks… never fully discharging, always fully discharging, always pointing the phone towards Amsterdam when charging (well, maybe not the last one :wink: )

Only the obvious stuff seems to have any effect… keep the screen brightness around 30-40%; turn off data, wi-fi and GPS when not in use; use dark-coloured backgrounds, screen-savers, etc.

I’ve been impressed with the Fairphone’s battery life… I’m getting around 72 hours per charge, which is pretty much the same as my old HTC Desire (a phone with a far less hungry processor) on a new battery.

I think this thread was meant to be about the overall life size of the battery (before it starts losing performance), not how long a single charge lasts.

With my last phones I just let them drain completeley then charge them full. They still hold as long as when they were new.
2002: Sagem MyX-5m (dumb phone, brick, states Li-Ion) still held for about a week though I’ve experienced some “calibration” failures. (That feature probably wasn’t far-spread but sometimes battery icon blinks then it’s okay again. It even failed me while talking with 1 of 4 bars.)
2008: Sony-Ericsson W595 (feature phone, slider, states Li-Poly) still held one week if not used. (Undergone several repairs, broken, wontfix)
2009: Sony-Ericsson W995 (feature phone, slider, states Li-Poly) still holds one week if not used and about 2 (maybe 3) days if extensively used. (Undergone several repairs, the case is broken, shuts down from time to time …) I’ve experienced something strange with behaviour when letting this lying around shutdown for some time. Percentage was frozen like there was still a memory effect …

Since complete drainage is no option anymore I let it recharge over night (after shutdown). But only after percentage has dropped to about 5% (that’s also when it will complain).

It probably doesn’t matter. It’s pretty foolproof now. As others have said before just don’t put it under thermal stress - below 0°C, above 40°C. Gauge Battery Widget will also give you the temperature. Used this with my tablet which I’ve broken since I’ve used the wrong charger … …

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I would like to know if the FP charger stops charging if the battery is full. The battery of the companies S3 mini died after being one week on the charger. Dying means starting an app with 87% full leads to a reboot of the phone.
Lenovo was able to handle notebook batteries more friendly even years ago.

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So I’ve been looking for guidance on how I should charge my fairphone battery for optimal health.
Some while ago I remember reading that different kinds of batteries needed different handling on charging for best health.
I’ve noticed that my phone changes colour when the battery gets lower, and I think at about 15% or 19% it starts to say that I should put it in a charger.
At what percentage should I charge it, below 20%? should it not go below 10 or 5% before I plug it in? Or should I aim to let it die before I plug it in? And does it make a difference if I charge it all the way to 100% percent or can I patch charge it without loosing performance capacity from the battery?

Thanks for any help and tips.

  • AT

Hi Anna,

in my opinion you should charge your phone in the way that’s most convenient for you. Personally I charge it over night every second day. My battery indicator then often shows 15-30 % capacity, and charging it to 100 % means that I can be sure that my phone is functionable the next day.

There are a lot of ‘urban myths’ on charging and battery maintenance floating around the www, and a bit of confusion due to the fact that older battery types (Ni-Cd, Ni-Mh) acted differently from today’s Li-ion batteries.

A battery of good quality should be able to be fully charged constantly (e.g. in a laptop that almost always is connected to an AC socket) or continuously dicharged to almost 0 % and then recharged to 100 %. It should still last two-three years or so before needing replacement (and then only because it discharges a little faster than before).

For long-term storage it is said that a Li-ion battery should be charged to about 40 % and stored in a cooled space, but that’s not anything that the ordinary end user should have to think about.


Don’t think that you have to wait for the battery to reach a certain percentage or even fully discharge before you can plug it in.
Manufacturers give charging cycles which say how often we can theoretically charge our battery without loosing capacity.
A charging cycle is counted as a full charge and discharge.
Consequently a charge from 50 percent to 100 percent makes only half a charging cycle and will wear your battery only half as much as a full cycle.
So you can’t “save” on charging cycles if you wait for your battery to fully discharge.
There is also no memory effect with Li - ion batteries.
What will hurt your battery, though, is a very deep discharge, so don’t hesitate to charge it when you have the time.


You’re right, and I ought to have stressed that in my previous post.
MMore exhaustive information here:
which also reminds us that there are other things besides charging that may reduce battery life, such as high temperatures (e…g. a hot car in the summer).


Can I ask a related question here? Will it hurt the battery in anyway to have the phone connected to the charger for prolonged periods of time? I want to leave the phone connected on my desk for 8 hours, every day, but the charge would be at 100% for all that time.

… Would that be bad for the Fairphone battery?

I can only offer you my own experience: I usually keep my FP plugged in overnight and not just when it’s discharged below 50% or whatever. My battery runtime is still as good as new.
I have no idea if it’s true but it seems to me as if the battery is fully charged and the Phone still plugged in the phone simply runs on the charger and not on the battery. This could be total humbug though.

I am pretty sure it that does not hurt the battery.

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AFAIK there should be a charge controller, so when you leave the charger connected and battery is full the charging is stopped automatically.

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So I saw the following article:

…and it got me thinking about how the Fairphone 2 has been touted to last between 5-7 years thanks to its sturdiness and modular upgradeability.

Now, obviously that’s not any kind of universal guarantee for anyone given the seemingly chaotic and random nature of the universe around us. But it seems a lot of problems (like the ones described above) could be easily solved by keeping in mind some tips and tricks from experienced users.

(As opposed to another solution from the same website: backing a kickstarter for a $23-36 ‘smart charger’ that will simply stop charging the phone when it reaches 100%.)

So what sort of stories and advice do people have about making your Fairphone - or any phone - last as long as it possibly can?

If you want to know everything about batteries, and how to use them “perfectly” , i recommend you this website :smile:

It’s a bit long to read, but super interesting !


Just to contribute some experience with my spare battery:
I bought it in June 2015 (delivered 30 June) and stored it 100% charged (I am aware this is not recommended) in my refrigerator door around mid-July. I now took it out of the fridge last night to use it for one cycle (and out of curiousity :wink: ) and found the charging status was 94%.

I am aware the charging status might not always be totally reliable. I’ll post here again when the charge is used up so I can give a better picture of how long the charge actually still held.


More for the fun of it rather than for any signifant conclusion, here are my charging cycles since I started using my semi-year fridge-stored backup battery. Cycles #2 and #3 were outright disappointing, although it is most likely that usage patterns (e.g. being connected to WLAN for almost a whole day) significantly deviating from my previous habits contributed a lot to the short duration. By now, the duration I get out of the battery are nearly identical to my first battery (I tend to think it might still be perhaps 5% less than the first battery). But then again I probably do use my FP1U a bit more intensively nowadays than when I would get peak durations of up to 11 days out of my first battery.

17-01-2016   —>     25-01-2016       —>        29-01-2016       —>        04-02-2016       —>       14-02

14-02-2016   —>     23-02-2016       —>        04-03-2016       —>        14-03-2016       —>       22-03*

*only 93% loaded on 14-03-2016

22-03-2016   —>     02-04-2016       —>     13/04


Today I switched back to my original battery. After a little more than 5 months in the fridge door, it shows 99% remaining on starting.


Bonjour, et après 5 mois au frigo la batterie est-elle performante ? Tient elle la charge ?