LiFePO4 is on the list of the safest battery packs you can find in the here and now. The safety and durability of these units are what make these batteries the best choice. In this article, we are going to find out if it’s a good idea to overcharge these batteries. Let’s dig a little deeper into the problem.
LiFePO4 is short for lithium iron phosphate. This technology uses the material called lithium iron phosphate as the positive electrode. The term overcharging refers to a state when a battery is continued to be overcharged even when it is fully charged. This can be really dangerous. In the past, this practice used to make a battery explode.
If you overcharge a battery, it will damage the cell permanently. As far as safety testing is concerned, you can internally test the overcharging degree of each cell. Given below are two tests for this purpose.
Usually, you end up overcharging a battery when you use a damaged charger. When the volts are too high, there is an overflow of a lot of lithium ions from the positive side to the other side. The non-absorbed ions start gathering on the battery surface. As a result, you may experience a short circuit within the unit.
This process generates tons of heat, which causes the electrolytes to catch fire. In some cases, the process may trigger a decomposition reaction. So, there is the generation of a lot of gas. Eventually, there can be an explosion, which may hurt you if you are sitting too close to the cell.
If the cell contains no Battery Management System (BMS), the voltage will rise gradually. In this case, the rest of the lithium ions in the cathode are stopped and sent to the anode in ideal conditions.
According to many ARC studies, the thermal stability of a battery depends upon the state of charge. In an experiment, an overcharged cell was inspected. The researchers found that the thermal stability of the cell was too low. Plus, the runaway temperature was just 40 degrees.
Can you Overcharge it?
If you want to know expert opinion about the subject, then you should avoid overcharging these units at all costs. It’s important to keep in mind that the most common cause for the failure of these cells is overcharging. In fact, even if you overcharge the unit once, it may still cause permanent damage. And you may end up voiding the warranty.
What is a BMS?
BMS is short for the Battery Management System, which is a piece of hardware that features a built-in electronic system that controls a rechargeable battery. It manages the system in an intelligent manner, improves battery use, and prevents the unit from overcharging.
In short, now you know that it’s not a good idea to overcharge a LiFePo4 battery no matter what. Therefore, you should charge the unit using the right charger and voltage. If you don’t follow these guidelines, you may end up damaging the unit and voiding the warranty at the same time.