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What Fast Charging Does to Your Battery

Phone owners know that looking down and seeing that battery icon at red is a terrifying situation. (In the grand scheme of things, we understand it’s not that big of a deal, but go with us on this one.)

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Fast chargers are becoming a great solution to that red battery situation.

Here are some things to understand about fast charging – and your phone battery – to extend your battery’s lifespan.

#1. Phone batteries aren’t meant to last longer than a couple of years.

 Phone batteries are small and lithium-ion (li-ion) based, so they’re not designed to last very long. That said, fast charging and other battery-saving features are becoming more prevalent.

“…Much of the recent progress in battery life has come from power-saving features built into devices and from making the software that manages to charge and discharging more efficient, so you sip power rather than guzzle it,” explains CNet’s Clifford Colby.

Development of next-gen phone battery technology has stalled, so don’t hold your breath for a newer, better battery anytime soon.

#2. Fast charging won’t hurt your battery.

We repeat: fast charging does not harm your battery.

Colby explains why:

“Fast-charging batteries work in two phases. The first phase applies a blast of voltage to the empty or nearly empty battery. This gives you that blazing charge from 50 to 70% in the first 10, 15 or 30 minutes. That’s because, during the first phase of charging, batteries can absorb a charge quickly without major negative effects on their long-term health.”

A phone’s battery management system also closely monitors these phases to ensure it functions properly.

#3. Overcharging your phone doesn’t hurt your battery, but letting it die, does.

 The battery management system will recognize when your phone has reached its full battery and shut off the electrical charge. However, letting your battery die “…can cause chemical reactions that over time can shorten a battery’s life.”

Again, the battery management system will step in and power down the phone when it’s at a safe level above empty. Still, you should avoid letting your phone die entirely.

#4. Battery damage occurs when your phone’s overheated.

 As to be expected, high temperatures are not good for your phone.

One Quora user argues that fast charging isn’t good for your phone because it can make your device hot.

“A hot device directly affects the life of a battery,” they say, “so it is better to keep your phone charged between 40 and 80 percent. Don’t use fast charge as your daily charging process. Use your normal charging process.”

It would be best if you also keep your phone from overheating in a window sill or a car dashboard. If there’s sunlight, then your phone shouldn’t be sitting in it.

#5. There are things you can do to preserve your battery.

 Quitting out of apps you’re not using, diming your brightness, and turning off Bluetooth, are just a few of the ways you can do to preserve your battery in the short term.