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batteries for cordless drills

2441 Views 12 Replies 9 Participants Last post by  thelt
Hello all LJs
About 7 years ago i bought two makita cordless drills. I did this so i did not have to look for the right battery. I would not say that these have seen a lot of use but they are used. So i have 4 batteries and now 2 of them will not take a charge at all and the other 2 do not seem to charge very well. The 2 that still work do not seem to last all that long and not very strong. So what is the life of the batteries? to me this does not seem to be long enough. Am i expecting to much from my batteries. Any help would be appreciated.

Thanks mike
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It is like any battery some last longer than others, can you still get replacements?
I Googled, How to rejuvenate nicad batteries, & found a lot of different ways.

But some of them look kind of risky. You have a lot of choices though, so pick what you think is the safest.

This one I thought may be the safest:

NiCads that won't hold a charge may return to near new condition using
this procedure. It is worth a try and maybe save $50 or more. If it fails for you, it doesn't cost much.

Discharge the battery as much as possible.
Put in freezer for 12 hours.
Remove and let thaw to room temperature.
Put in charger and let charge normally.

Two men reported this as a solution to Woodworkers Journal's e-zine.

Be very careful if you try it to thaw the battery thoroughly before charging as nicads can explode if charged below 5 Centigrade.
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7 years for cordless batteries - that's about right! especially since you didn't use them much (as you claimed)

are these NiCd/NiMtl batteries? those batteries have "memory", and so, if you didn't use them for a while - they "think" that they are empty, but since they are not, then they will not charge , nor keep their charge for long.

I have 4 Dewalt batteries that are ~5 years old and are all dead now. will not take charge, and will not hold anything.

some people restored those batteries with zapping them to life, other's just replaced them with new ones.

Li-Ion batteries are supposed to "fix" the "memory" problem, and keep their charge for longer time ,and also don't lose the charge if not used. not 100% , but much much better than NiCd/NiMtl batteries.
If you have a Batterys Plus in your area they will refurbish them for $5.00. That is if they aren't to far gone and then they rebuild them for you for additional money of course.
Anybody have any thoughts on Lithium batteries. I have a new cordless drill that uses litium ion and after purchasing saw the price for a new battery. Holy S*%t!

The cost of the battery is close to the cost of the drill. Hopefully they last a long time!
I doubt LiIon batteries will go down in price, this has ALWAYS been the culprit of the cordless tools - the batteries ARE the costly factor.

touche for Ridgid - original owner gets batteries for life! I wish that was the case with the rest of them, or at least some "replacement plan/deal" with their loyal customers…
I bought a 4 piece tool set by Dewalt on ebay, & 2 of the batteries gave out.

I noticed there was a 2 year warrantee, & brought them to our local fleet store.

They replaced them promptly, with no questions asked.

They just checked the date on them.
Unless the original charger that came with your tool can handle/charge Lithium batteries there is no point in replacing NiCd or NiMH batteries with LiIon and it could also be potentially dangerous too.
If you recharge LiIon batteries incorrectly they can explode.
If your original batteries were NiCd the best option you have is to replace them with NiMH batteries they have more capacity and they do not suffer the memory issue that NiCd have.
Some battery packs are rebuildable others are not.
You can find OEM batteries from online retailers also here are some links I have found:
The usual life of batteries is more like 3 to 5 years and in most cases new batteries are almost as expensive as a new drill with two new batteries and charger. In the seven years since you bought these they have made many improvements. Batteries are better (especially Lithium), drills are more powerful, and they are lighter in weight.
I suggest getting a new drill.
It's about the same with some printer ink. It's cheaper to buy a new printer that comes with ink.
I noticed on the batteries Plus website and Battereis America they don't have any craftsman tools listed. Anybody know where replacement batteries can be obtain? Excluding Sears.
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