One of the biggest pain points for mobile phone users these days is battery life. While 8-10 hours of power seems at first blush to be a remarkable improvement over just a few years ago, a few long conversations and a couple hours of video news will drop that battery LED or on-screen meter down to zero in no time.
But what if you’ve just charged your Samsung or other smartphone and still aren’t getting any juice? That could indicate you need either a replacement battery or replacement phone. While the vast majority of smartphones today use rechargeable lithium ion, or Li-ion batteries, they’re not created equally. Like all rechargeables, cell phone batteries eventually lose their charge faster over time or don’t take a charge at all. There are several ways to determine if the cell phone needs a new battery.
|1. The Phone is Dead|
This may be an obvious one. Either you accidentally damaged your phone by dropping it or dunking it in water for too long, or the battery is dead. If you’ve eliminated the first as a culprit, check to see if it shows no sign of power – nothing lights up, no sound, nada. If the phone shows no signs of life after charging with a reliable charger, it’s time to call it: your battery is dead. There is a good chance that the battery may need to be replaced. Some manufacturers like Samsung sell models that let the user replace a battery with a Samsung Original Standard Battery. The Samsung Galaxy S4 and Note 3, for instance, have this option, while the newer Samsung Galaxy S6, S7 and Note 4 does not. Apple, another top manufacturer, keeps batteries behind a sealed case. You have to take the phone into an authorized store for repair or replacement.
|2. The Phone Only Shows Power When Plugged In|
|3. The Phone Dies Quickly|
|4. The Phone or Battery Starts to Feel Hot|
Rechargeable batteries inevitably generate heat as they charge. However, most rechargeable batteries internalize the heat, thereby shielding it from becoming noticeably hot. If it starts to become hot to the touch, it may be time to consider a new battery. Then, too, consider the ambient temperature near your phone. A hot sun might be the culprit.
|5. The Battery Bulges|
Sometimes, when a battery goes bad, the internal cells rupture, and cause a bulge to appear in the battery. You see this when you hold the battery up or see a bulge on the casing. Additionally, a bulge makes it able to spin like a top when placing the battery on a flat surface.
Is It Worthwhile to Replace a Cell Phone Battery
Without a battery or other form of power, a cell phone is worthless. Is it worthwhile to replace a cell phone battery? Maybe. If you have an old phone that’s not in the best condition, a dead battery may be a symptom of thing to come if you hang onto the device. It may not be worth getting a new battery, only to have the phone give out a few days or weeks later. However, if the phone is in good condition and fits your needs, it may be beneficial to purchase a new battery to get it up and running again.
While cell phone batteries have come a long way in terms of both longevity and average life, their performance can be variable. The easiest way to see if your battery needs to be replaced is if you can check its condition or swap it out for a spare. If you have an iPhone, you’ll likely have to take it into an Apple store or authorized repair shop for a replacement, but if you’ve got a phone that lets you replace the battery yourself, eBay is a good place to score deals. One last tip: batteries are classified as hazardous waste. You shouldn’t simply toss them in the trash. Look for recycling centers or online sites when you can send old batteries for disposal.