LiFePO4 Battery Not Charging? Here Is How To Fix It
Jul 19, 2023
We have been having a problem when our customers buy our GOLDENAMTE LiFePO4 batteries. They install them, they believe they are lead acid batteries, hook them up, turn them on some loads, and run them completely dead.
When trying to charge them, what happens is that they won´t charge, and I believe the battery ran dead after only one cycle.
If you’re experiencing issues with your lithium battery not charging, there are a few easy troubleshooting tips you can try. Let’s dive in and see what might be causing your power problems and what you can do about it.
How Do Lithium Batteries Charge?
LiFePO4 batteries require a battery management system (BMS) to monitor the status of the batteries. What this vital section of the battery does, is ensure that the battery is only charged under safe conditions. They will charge incredibly quickly when choosing the correct time of day to charge your LiFePO4 battery.
Many customers want to charge their lithium-ion batteries with solar panels. However, you can also charge through a vehicle alternator or shore power. The type of charger will depend on the size of your battery bank. It does not matter how you will charge your battery; we encourage you only to charge when temperatures are below freezing.
What Makes Lithium-ion Batteries Die?
Even though LiFePO4 batteries have a long lifecycle, some factors can contribute to reducing the battery´s life. We will mention the most common ones.
Wrong cell voltage
Charging at the recommended voltage will make your battery charge quickly. However, it is common for people to charge at a higher voltage. As a result, the battery will overheat, and the BMS will interfere. On the contrary, if the voltage is too low, the battery will lose capacity and not charge after a while.
As stated before, we recommend charging your battery somewhere it is not exposed to extreme temperatures. Especially freezing ones.
High temperatures can also affect your battery lifespan. There is a high chance that your battery will not last long. Exposing LiFePO4 batteries to temperature changes or for a long time to an extreme temperature will have its outcome. Hence, it affects the efficiency of your battery.
Your GOLDENMATE battery has a lifecycle of 5-10 years. As with any other electric appliance, it has a shelf life. Recurrent recharging sessions will affect the durability of your battery. If you have been using it for a certain amount of years, consider purchasing a new one.
Can you revive a battery that refuses to charge
Yes, you can. Yet, before trying to charge it, you need to ensure the battery is in condition to be charged. See the description above again in case you are unsure about this point.
You will find different homemade tricks. But we suggest you use a charger that is specific for lithium-ion batteries. This charger can help restore lost charge and prolong the battery life. If this doesn´t work, it means your battery is dead.
Why Is My Lithium Battery Not Charging?
Some factors behind the non-charging issue include the faulty charger, BMS failure, damage to the charging system, or even the battery power. These are some of the easiest and most common places to start.
Faulty or wrong charger
Lithium batteries accept substantially more power compared to other batteries. This is why they charge faster and why sometimes you are using a wrong or faulty charger.
When the charger is plugged in, and the system indicates it is not charging, it is necessary to use a different charger. If this is also not solving the charging issue, then it relies on the battery.
You may also need to upgrade your charger or adjust its settings that will charge your lithium battery. You can look at the technical features in the documentation that came with your charger and/or battery to ensure they are compatible.
The battery management system can be faulty as well. Your battery is plugged in, and the charger is correct and works, yet the battery is not charging. This means it can be a problem with the BMS.
If your BMS is affected by a virus, outdated, or corrupted, there will be no charger that can charge accordingly. Another alternative would be that your voltage or current is undetected because of unbalanced cells.
Damage in the charging system or connections
This issue involves circuit hardware and other issues. However, you must be aware that every battery has a strong charging system. On occasions, even if the battery is plugged in, the charging system might be faulty.
Your connections can be loose as well. Wiggle the wires and look for any loose connection that needs tightening. You should check the battery connections and any other connections in your electrical system.
You went through all the issues as mentioned earlier, and your battery is still not charging. Then, it is clear that your battery needs replacement.
How to fix the LiFePO4 battery that doesn´t charge?
Your battery is expected to not charge after being stored for a couple of months. You can follow this road map to receiving your battery.
Use a low volt charger.
You have stored your battery for some time, and now it is not picking up the electric current. In this case, you can use a low-volt charger. The slow introduction of nominal charge can revive the battery without affecting it.
Rest after 80% charge.
We suggest you charge your battery up to 80% with the low-voltage charger. Once it reaches this percentage, we suggest you let it rest for a couple of hours. Allowing the battery rest will let the chemical components settle down.
If this is the first charge after not using it for some months, check the discharge rate of your battery to detect any abnormal consumption.
How can I Identify if my Device Needs a New Battery or a New Charger?
In order to be sure if you need a battery or charger replacement, check the display panel. The latter will show you the charging status of your battery. Suppose your battery doesn´t show any activity while connected to the charger, and you went through all the possibilities as mentioned earlier; your battery needs replacement.
If the charger is charging slowly or disconnecting, it is time to get a new one.
Lithium batteries are generally safe to use and will last for a long time. But remember that you are still working with a battery, and it can fail to function. Thus it would be best if you went through the different reasons why it might be faulty.
Your battery can affect its performance from a charger, BMS failure, charging system, loose wires, or exposure to harsh temperatures.
We always recommend having at least 50% charge in your battery and charging it every three months. In case you need to store it, read this article, How to store your LiFePO4 battery properly.