How to Reset DeWalt Power Tool Batteries

DeWalt has a selection of woodworking tools and power tools that contain a rechargeable nickel-cadmium battery pack so you don’t have to deal with electrical extension cords and trying to locate a electrical outlet. DeWalt DE9036 battery packs are quick to charge and long-lasting, and contain a microchip that shuts the battery pack off if it overheats. Once the battery pack shuts off, you have to reset it. The reset process clears the microchip’s memory and gives the chip the “all clear” to charge normally.
Press the battery pack removal button, located on the back of the power tool’s handle, to release the battery pack from the DeWalt DE903 power tool battery.

Slide the battery pack along the rail track, on the bottom of the power tool, to remove the pack.

Place the battery pack into the battery pack charger with the metal contact side matching the metal contacts in the charger.

Let the battery pack charge for eight hours. Your DeWalt DE9038 battery pack is now reset.

Reset/charge the battery pack at room temperature (at least 68 degrees Fahrenheit)—do not place the battery charger in a cold garage or other area that is below room temperature. This could lead to the charger failing and the battery pack not resetting/charging.

Posted in drill battery care | Leave a comment

NiMH Drill Battery Charger Instructions

NiMH batteries can be recharged and used multiple times. These Dewalt power tool batteries are easy to charge at home with an NiMH battery charger. Learning to use the charger is simple and can be done in just a few minutes.

Choosing an NiMH Battery Charger

There are quite a few options available when choosing a NiMH battery charger. Consider how many batteries the charger can charge at one time. Some can charge up to 10 AA or AAA batteries at a time, while other chargers can only charge two AA or AAA batteries at a time. How long the charger takes to fully charge batteries is another consideration. Some supposed “quick chargers” can actually take up to six hours to fully charge batteries, while other models can fully charge your batteries in 90 minutes.

Understanding the Manufacturer’s Instructions

Be sure you understand the manufacturer’s instructions before charging your NiMH batteries. The risk of serious danger is low, but there is a possibility that your Makita power tool battery charger could overheat if it is not used properly.

Using the NiMH Battery Charger

To use your NiMH battery charger, begin by plugging it into an ordinary wall outlet. If your charger is equipped with multiple charging settings, select the setting and insert the NiMH batteries into the charger, being sure to observe the correct polarity of the batteries. When the light on your NiMH battery charger changes from red to green, your batteries for Bosch power tool are fully charged and ready for use.

Posted in drill battery care | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

How to Charge Tool Batteries Hooked in Series

Recharging a single battery is straightforward; connect it to a commercially produced battery charger designed for that type of battery. When several batteries are linked in series, their voltages are combined, so three separate 12-volt batteries become one 36-volt battery. This situation is common in solar power arrays, and in trailers with more than one 12-volt vehicle battery. Charging linked batteries is possible in several ways. An understanding of the rules of electricity allows you to select a method suited to your needs and resources.

Choosing a Charging Method

Step 1

Decide how to charge the Hitachi power tool batteries. The number of batteries and battery chargers that you own, the voltage ratings of your chargers and time available for the recharging will influence your choices. Select the method that suits your circumstances.

Step 2

Charge any number of batteries with a single battery charger if that is the only charger you own. This is a slow method and you will need to disconnect each battery from the series before charging it.

Step 3

Charge all the batteries contemporaneously with multiple chargers if you own as many battery chargers as you have batteries. This is faster than charging the batteries one at a time, but requires plenty of battery chargers.

Step 4

Charge the entire battery chain with only one battery charger if you have a high voltage charger. For example, charge two 12-volt car batteries together using a 24-volt charger.
Charging Each Battery Seperately

Step 1

Disassemble the series Panasonic power tool battery. Disconnect the battery links and move the individual batteries apart to ensure they have no electrical contact with each other.

Step 2

Charge each battery, one at a time, by connecting a charger across the terminals. When the first battery is charged, move to the next until every battery is charged. Use a charger rated for the same voltage as the battery.

Step 3

When all the batteries are charged, clean the terminals, and reconnect them to form a series battery. Ensure that the connections are tight before using the battery.
Charging Multiple Batteries with Multiple Chargers

Step 1

Attach a battery charger to each battery, but do not switch it on. With all the batteries connected to chargers, switch on the chargers to start the recharging process. For example, to charge a series of five 12-volt batteries, use five 12-volt battery chargers, one connected to each battery

Step 2

Monitor the charging. Some batteries may recharge before others. Signs of gas escaping from batteries, or the cases becoming hot, indicate that a battery is overcharged. Stop charging immediately.

Step 3

Switch off the chargers and remove them from the batteries. The serial battery should now hold a full charge.
Charging with One Higher Voltage Charger.

Step 1

Ensure that all the battery connections are tight and the terminals are clean. Double check the number of batteries and the total voltage.

Step 2

Connect the charger across the end positive and negative terminals of the series. For example, with a series of five batteries, connect it across the free terminal of the first battery and the free terminal of the fifth battery.

Step 3

Monitor the charging process to detect AEG tool batteries emitting gas or feeling excessively hot. Stop charging if any batteries exhibit these signs; clean and tighten the terminals and try again.

Posted in drill battery care | Leave a comment

How to Improve Your Cordless Drill Battery

I hate it when my cordless drill gives up in the middle of a job. It seems that the supplied battery packs just don’t cut it. So I opened up the battery pack and replaced the Ni-Cad with much longer lasting Ni-MH batteries. Now I get a much longer use between charges.

My Panasonic drill battery pack had 4 Torx screws (I later replaced with regular Phillips screws for easier access). Inside you’ll find 10 NiCad batteries. They appear to be just a bit smaller than ‘C’ cells, and all attached together in series. 1.2 volts X 10 cells = 12 volts. The cells are marked as 1300 mAH which is why they don’t last very long. You will probably want to photograph the arrangement of batteries since you will need to make a new pack look just like this. Also notice the thin insulator that keeps the top battery from shorting against the batteries on the bottom.

Aquire a new set of identically sized batteries. In my case the size is called ‘Sub-C’. I got them at for $24.00. They come with tabs attached. Carefully assemble the new cells into the same arrangement as the original, and solder the tabs appropriately. Be careful not to short out a cell while assembling it – even briefly! You will also need to scratch the surface of the leads before soldering and put a thin coat of solder on each tab before assembly (called tinning). Re-assemble and test. Be sure to re-use the fusable link that came with the original battery pack.

Capacity:The new batteries are rated at 3000 mAH, so expect more than twice the run time than the original pack. You may wonder — will the higher capacity hurt the tool? No: the important thing here is that the voltage is the same, but you may end up working the tool harder with the increased capacity, so don’t over-do it. I’ve been using it for about a year and a half, and it’s been excellent.

Charging: Since my old charger is expecting to charge 1300MAH NiCads, it will require a much longer charging time. The spec sheet that comes with your new batteries should help you here. Also checkout for more important detailed info on charging different types of batteries. A better charging method may increase your Hitachi cordless drill battery life.

Why do the batter packs die? I’ve been analyzing the old cells, and I’ve noticed that several of the cells are bad, but many of them are ok – it only takes one dud to render a battery pack useless.
Since the drill came with two battery packs, I can combine the good ones to make a second working pack. The old cells can be tested as shown below – the important part here is the load. I’ve used a flashlight bulb as a load which also server as a visual indicator of the battery’s charge. Testing without the load will give useless results. I’ve seen some cells read 1.2volts without a load — which seems good, but drop to 0.3 volts when the load is added — clearly a dud.

Economics: A good mod should be economical too! Sears wants $40.00 for a new battery pack – if you can find it (I paid about $75 for the tool with two batteries – so why is a replacement so expensive?) So with this mod, I get a better Ryobi power tool battery for $24.00

Safety notes: Like many of the projects here on instructables, there are potential safety problems if you don’t know what you are doing — so if you don’t know your series circuits from your parallel circuits STOP! don’t attempt to perform this mod – it can be potentially dangerous if the cells are mis-wired or short circuited. Also beware any leaking chemicals from bad cells. Also make sure your soldering skills are sufficient before working on this project. A reader from Makezine’s blog noted that one of the solder tabs is thinner than the others – this acts as a fuse – make sure you include the fuse in your completed pack.

Environmental issues: dispose used Ni-Cad cells properly. Your new Hi-Mh batteries are more environmentally friendly though some still recommend re-cycling.

Posted in drill battery care | Leave a comment

How to Remove the Drill Chuck on a DeWalt XRP

DeWalt XRP drills are one of the more popular cordless drills. To service the drill, it is sometimes necessary to remove the chuck. The chuck is the cylindrical protrusion at the tip of the Dewal DCB205 drill battery. The chuck has three “fingers” that move in unison to grasp the drill bit, while keeping the bit centered. XRP drills feature a keyless chuck that allows bit changes without the use of tools. To open the chuck, turn the front counterclockwise; to tighten the chuck, turn the front clockwise.

Lock the drill by setting the reversing switch to its center “Off” position or removing the battery.

Set the clutch to “Drill” position. Set the gearshift to its lowest range.

Insert the short end of a hex key into the chuck and tighten the chuck firmly.

Hold the drill firmly on the edge of a table or lock it in a vise with the free end of the hex key pointing to the right. Strike the end of the hex key with a dead-blow hammer or soft-faced mallet, turning the chuck in a clockwise direction.

Open the chuck fully to remove the hex key and expose the head of the retaining screw inside the chuck. Turn the screw clockwise (the screw has a left-hand thread) using a Torx driver. Remove the Dewalt DCB220 battery.

Replace the hex key in the chuck and tighten. Point the free end of the hex key to the left, and strike the free end of the hex key with the hammer, causing the chuck to turn counterclockwise. You can now unscrew the chuck by turning it counterclockwise by hand.

If the existing chuck is damaged to the point that it will not tighten on the hex key, try using a pipe wrench to turn the chuck.

Older drills may use a Phillips screw in place of a Torx screw.

Wear eye protection when using striking Dewalt DE0240 tool batteries.

Posted in drill battery care | Leave a comment

Rechargeable Tool Battery Care and Maintenance Guide

There are basically three types of rechargeable tool batteries available for use with consumer electronic products: nickel cadmium (Ni-Cad), Nickel-Metal Hydride (NiMH) and Lithium Ion (Li-Ion). I will discuss the advantages, disadvantages and ways to improve battery performance for each of these three types of rechargeable batteries.

Please take a few moments to vote for this guide if you find it helpful. I spend alot of time researching and writing my guides and the only compensation I get is your vote on its helpfulness. Your vote will be greatly appreciated!

NI-CAD Batteries
Ni-Cad batteries are probably the most commonly known type of rechargeable batteries in use today. These batteries have a good capacity and maintain a stable voltage throughout their discharge cycle. The stable discharge voltage allows electronic devices, using Ni-Cad batteries, to operate throughout almost the entire discharge cycle. Another advantage to Ni-Cad batteries is that they have a reasonable shelf life between charges. The main drawback to Ni-Cad batteries is the “memory” effect. Another factor that plagues Ni-Cad batteries is the limited number of recharge cycles before the batteries must be replaced. Ni-Cad batteries will usually require replacement every 1-2 years.

Ni-Cad battery memory effect is generally described as the battery operating for a shorter and shorter period of time as the battery gets older. The reason for this is that most people user their Ni-Cad battery operated devices and then promptly place the device into the charger. Over time Ni-Cad batteries develop crystals in the unused portions of the battery material which prohibit the chemical reaction that produces electricity. If you only use your Ni-Cad battery for 30 minutes before placing it back on the charger, over time, your battery will only be able to operate for a maximum of 30 minutes (hence the term memory effect).

There are two simple steps that you can do minimize Ni-Cad battery memory effect. First, always use your Ni-Cad battery operated device until the battery is completely drained. This will minimize crystal build-up and extend your battery’s useful life. Another way to increase your Ni-Cad battery’s useful life is by performing a deep discharge cycle about once a month. A deep discharge cycle is achieved by operating your Ni-Cad powered device until the device completely stops operating. Performing these simple steps should ensure that you achieve maximum life out of your Ni-Cad Milwaukee drill batteries.

Ni-MH Batteries
Ni-MH batteries are a newer technology of rechargeable batteries. They have the same advantages as Ni-Cad batteries but they don’t suffer from the memory effect. They also have a longer useful life cycle; about 3-4 years before requiring replacement. The main drawback to Ni-MH batteries is that they have a fairly high discharge rate while in storage. For instance, if you fully charge a Ni-MH battery and then leave it unattended for about a week, it will lose about 20% of its charge.

To avoid this problem, it is advisable to keep your Ni-MH batteries in the charger when they aren’t in use. Because they don’t suffer from the memory effect, keeping them on the charger won’t do any harm. NiMH batteries are more expensive than Ni-Cad batteries, but they will last a lot longer. In the long run NiMH batteries turn out to provide better value.

Li-Ion Batteries
The newest category of commercially available rechargeable batteries are the Li-Ion batteries. These batteries have all the advantages of Ni-Cad and NiMH batteries plus they have a longer useful life than either of these two types of rechargeable batteries. The main disadvantage to Li-Ion batteries is that they lose about 10% of their useable capacity each year due to chemical breakdown within the cells. There is nothing that can be done to prevent this condition..

Li-Ion batteries have a typical useful life of between 300-500 discharge cycles or about 4-5 years. You can maximize the useful life of your Li-Ion batteries by keeping them on the charger during use (e.g. laptop computer) or keeping them on the charger when not in use. Because Li-Ion batteries are “smart” batteries they cannot be overcharged.

Because Li-Ion battery life is dependent on the number of discharge cycles, anything you can do to minimize the number of discharge cycles will, in effect, increase the battery’s useful life.

Here’s a Li-Ion battery maintenance tip; Li-Ion batteries should be conditioned about once a month. Most Li-Ion batteries have a fuel gauge on the battery (i.e. the LEDs on one side of the battery with a test button) and the electronic device (usually a laptop computer) also has monitoring software to manage the battery power. The accuracy of a Li-Ion battery’s self-monitoring circuitry degrades after about a month of use. If you notice that your battery’s fuel gauge or your device’s operating time estimate is way off, then you probably need to condition your battery.

To calibrate (or condition) your Li-Ion Metabo tool battery, fully charge your batteries (let them charge overnight even if they appear to have a full charge) then operate your device until it shuts down. Recharge your batteries and you should notice an improvement in the accuracy of the operating time prediction.

Here’s a Summary of What You Need to Know About Rechargeable Batteries

Ni-Cad Battery

PRO: Steady Voltage Throughout Discharge Cycle, Good Shelf Life
CON: Suffer from “Memory Effect”
TIP: To minimize memory effect, always operate your Ni-Cad batteries until fully depleted. Completely discharge Ni-Cad batteries about once-a-month
NiMH Battery

PRO: Steady Voltage Throughout Discharge Cycle, no “Memory Effect”
CON: Shelf Discharge Rate Higher Than Ni-Cad Batteries
TIP: Keep NiMH batteries on charger when not in use.
Li-Ion Battery

PRO: Steady Voltage Throughout Discharge Cycle, No Memory Effect, Better Shelf Life Than NiMH Batteries
CON: Lose About 10% Useful Capacity Each Year
TIP: Minimize battery cycles by keeping Li-Ion battery operated devices on charger when available. Condition Li-Ion batteries about once-a-month to keep them calibrated.
Feel free to contact me with any suggestions, comments or corrections to this guide. I’m always interested in improving my guides. Don’t forget to vote on this guide if you found it helpful or entertaining.

Posted in drill battery care | Tagged , , , , | Leave a comment

Get the Most from Li-Ion Milwaukee Batteries

I’m sitting at my desk and I’m surrounded by devices that owe their lifeblood to Li-Ion rechargeable MILWAUKEE 48-11-2401 batteries. And as most devices are now built in such a way that replacing the battery is tricky – if not almost impossible – so you want to get the best possible lifespan out of that battery.

How much of a difference can taking care of the battery make? Well, I have both a second-generation drill nano bought around December 2006 and a first-generation drill touch bought in 2008 that are both still on their original batteries and are still going strong.

So, how do you get the most out of Li-Ion batteries?
Understand the “recharge cycle”

Every battery has a finite lifespan, and this is given as the “recharge cycle” or “battery cycle.” Put simply, this is the number of charge/discharge cycles that a battery can endure before being no longer fit for service. Many manufacturers offer this number. For example, Apple state that the tool battery is designed to retain up to 80 percent of its original capacity at 500 full charge and discharge cycles, while the Milwaukee power tool is designed to deliver up to 1000 full charge and discharge cycles before it reaches 80 percent of its original capacity.

But most people think that they can dodge this charge and discharge by topping up their battery regularly so the MILWAUKEE 48-11-2411 battery doesn’t get fully discharged. Unfortunately, you “cannae change the laws of physics.” If you only let you battery discharge by 25 percent, then doing this four times counts as a cycle. Same if you do five charges after 20 percent discharge, or even 20 recharges after 5 percent discharge.

You cannae change the laws of physics!

However, what you can do is take advantage of this. How? By hooking your device up to a power source when you can. For example, playing music from your iPod or iPhone at home via a dock, or plugging your Milwaukee drill into a power outlet when convenient.

In other words, don’t put the battery through unnecessary cycles. Understand that I’m not saying keep the device on charge all the time – that would also be bad for the battery because it needs a regular workout to keep its internal chemistry in good condition – just be aware of wasting cycles.

Some people say that you shouldn’t allow a Li-Ion battery to become fully exhausted before recharging, other people say it doesn’t matter.

Truth is, with Li-Ion batteries it doesn’t really matter because their discharge is closely regulated by on-board circuits.

This used to matter with the old NiCd battery chemistry because they could discharge completely and become impossible to recharge (those batteries also didn’t like being charged too often, and were much more sensitive to temperature), and it matters with lead-acid batteries which also don’t take too well to being discharged too much unless they are rated for “deep cycle.”
Use the right charger

I’m a big advocate in using the right charger for the right device.

It might be more convenient to pack one charger and a bunch of cables for trips, but for long-term usage you’re better off using a charger designed for your device because that’s delivering the right amount of power for the battery. Regularly using a charger that delivers too much or too little power will affect the longevity of the battery.

If you are going to go down the third-party charger road, then make sure they are a reputable brand. No-name junk might look and feel like an original charger, but based on my testing I’ve found that what comes out of the cable can vary wildly.

Does it really make sense to hook up a $500 tablet to a $2 charger? I think not. While battery protection circuits do a good job of shutting off power that could damage a MILWAUKEE M12 battery, poor quality chargers can still damage devices and the batteries inside them.

Posted in drill battery care | Tagged , | Leave a comment

Reconditioning A Li-ion Drill Battery

New, modern and expensive cordless drills might also come equipped with Lithium-ion batteries. These batteries are different from the aforementioned Nickel based batteries in every possible way. The entire chemistry is different and so is the behaviour. Li-ion Panasonic cordless drill batteries have no memory effect and hate deep discharges.

The best way to maintain your Li-ion batteries is to:

Charge it frequently without letting it drop below 20-30% charge.

Operate it between 30%-90% charge without either charging or discharging it fully. This will increase the charge cycles of the battery many times.

Operate and store it in a cool environment as much as possible. Performance and capacity decreases in high temperatures.

Store the Hitachi power tool battery in a partially charged state of 40-50%.

Recondition it by using the drill normally till power drops and give it a full charge.

Li-ion batteries are smart batteries with a smart circuit built into them. Their chargers also usually know how to charge them properly.

Its not that important to charge the power tool battery for AEG till only 80-90%. You can charge it fully before use. It is more important to not discharge it completely. There are many ways of reconditioning a dead Li-ion battery. Here are some helpful resources.

Posted in drill battery care | Tagged , | Leave a comment

How To Charge Power Tool Batteries

Following the correct charging and discharging methods for your cordless woodworking tools can enhance the life of the battery and save you from buying expensive replacement.

First thing go through the instruction manual on battery care. Not all chargers are the same. For example, DeWatt designs several of batteries and chargers in such a way that the Hitachi power tool battery can be left on the charger for maintenance and equalization cycles.

Li-ion batteries like partial discharges. You do not have to wait for them to fully discharge. Top them up whenever you get the chance.

Li-ion batteries like partial charges. You don’t have to charge them till 100% before using them. In fact, they go through maximum wear and tear and stress when charging 90-100%. By charging them to less than full capacity you will extend their life.

Li-ion Panasonic cordless drill batteries do not like complete discharge. Do not discharge below 20% when you can help it. Stop using the tool when it shows signs of weakening in power and slowing down. Re-charge the battery at this point.

Do not charge or discharge in very hot conditions like over 40°C.

Do not leave the battery in the charger for very long after fully charged.

Discharge a Li-ion battery periodically. They have a shelf life and they stay active for longer when kept in use.

Charge to 30-40% before storing.

Note: A lot of cordless woodworking power tools don’t have a built in battery meter that shows the amount of charge left in the tool. Even the ones that do give a rough idea. Not like the exact percentage that we are used to seeing on our computers and smart phones. So its difficult to tell when the battery is 20% or 90%.

You will either have to use an external meter. They can be found cheaply online. Or as we have mentioned, just stop using the tool when it slows down and put the power tool batteries for RYOBI on charge.

Posted in drill battery care | Tagged , | Leave a comment

How to Restore a Dead AA NiMH Battery

NiMH batteries use a Nickel Metal Hydride cell to deliver power to electronic devices. Unlike standard batteries, NiMH Hitachi power tool batteries can be recharged and used repeatedly once they have ran out of power. However, NiMH batteries can experience certain conditions that force them to loose their recharging capabilities. While some batteries are beyond repair and will not come back from the dead, there are a couple steps you can take to bring your AA NiMH battery back to life.

Place your dead NiMH batteries in the plastic bag and put them in your freezer. Let the batteries sit in the cold for 3-4 hours.

Place the battery in the discharger and let it deplete the battery completely.

Insert the Panasonic cordless drill battery into the charger as soon as it is depleted and wait overnight or until it has reached a full charge.

Put the battery back into the freezer and let it sit for another couple of hours.

Remove the battery from the freezer and place it on the discharger. Let it run completely out of power before placing it back on the charger. Charge the battery until it is full, place it in the freezer and repeat the process.

Continue repeating the process until the battery is restored; ideally this will take about 5-7 times. Perform the process to supplement the strength of the power tool battery for AEG.

Not all dead NiMH batteries can be restored, especially if they have experienced some form of physical damage.

Posted in drill battery care | Tagged , , | Leave a comment