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Can Laptop Batteries Explode? Protect Your Laptop NOW

Dave Miller with Online Cloud Security

Dave Miller – Tech Enthusiast & Security Expert – January 20th, 2022

can laptop batteries explode

Lithium-ion, sometimes known as Li-ion, is the most widely used battery technology today. Today’s batteries are much smaller than those of the past, and they are available in various electrical capabilities and sizes. Modern mobile phones and computers have sleek forms that are only conceivable because of the lithium-ion batteries that power them. Lithium batteries have caught fire in the past, resulting in several catastrophes, making you question if your laptop is at risk as well. 

Can Laptop Batteries Explode? Are any of the devices you use at risk? I am, after all, here to respond to these inquiries. Although lithium batteries have improved over time, the commonly used lithium-ion battery may not be equal to the challenge of driving the global green economy into the future.

Quick Answer: A Big Yes, Lithium-ion batteries that are in laptops are susceptible to overheating. A laptop battery explosion may get caused by a variety of circumstances, and your laptop might get engulfed in flames.

Continue reading the post, and I’ll show you how safe the battery in the device you’re using is, as well as how to treat a bloated battery properly if you have one.

Table of Contents

Batteries in General – Working Principle

Before I answer can laptop batteries explode, let us have a basic understanding of how these laptop batteries work.  

Today, tens of thousands of people rely on lithium-ion batteries to keep them running. Because of their low weight and excellent energy density, they’re becoming increasingly popular. A battery comprises numerous separate cells linked together, and a negative electrode, positive electrode, and liquid electrolyte are the three primary components of each cell.

The lithium ions get stored in the anode and cathode, and the electrolyte transports positively charged lithium ions from the anode to the cathode through the separator and vice versa. The movement releases free electrons, which causes an electrical current to flow, allowing a device like your laptop to be powered.

Laptop Batteries – Are they Different?

A laptop battery operates quite similarly to how other devices’ batteries work. And Laptop batteries, like all other batteries, come in a variety of forms and sizes. Furthermore, a complex electrical circuit regulates power flow while charging and discharging, and ordinary rechargeable batteries do not generally include it

It guarantees that the battery’s cells operate correctly and informs you of how much time you have before recharging the battery. Laptop makers specially design laptop battery packs to match the complete functionality of the laptop model. It is the most evident distinction between these batteries and regular batteries.

Problem with Laptop Batteries - Can Laptop Batteries Explode?

Because lithium-ion batteries get so tightly linked to our everyday lives, they must be safe. The desire for high-performance energy storage devices is driving the development of lithium-ion batteries with high energy density. However, technology can introduce new, substantial risks that must get appropriately managed in the workplace.

Laptop batteries are typically safe and unlikely to fail, but only if there are no flaws or damage to the batteries.

Lithium-ion battery failures can arise due to cell construction or overuse flaws. As a result, depending on the type of fault and the damaged region, it might respond in several ways. When a cell fails, the heat emitted damages surrounding cells, causing a chain reaction known as a thermal runaway. Lithium batteries’ high energy density makes them more prone to fire, which can occur when the electrolyte burns and releases byproducts that can ignite and produce smoke.

Can Laptop Batteries Explode? Yes, they are capable. A malfunctioning lithium-ion battery, make no mistake, is extremely dangerous and can explode. Fortunately, explosions and flames do not occur frequently.

Battery Explosion Accidents Why? Details

A contemporary rechargeable lithium-ion battery packs a surprising amount of power into a compact package. If the battery both electrodes connect due to a manufacturing flaw, the battery short circuits and generates a lot of heat, which might cause the battery to explode. It has the potential to create a fire and inflict significant injury. Several manufacturers have already recalled millions of batteries due to the risk of explosions caused by manufacturing flaws. Here are some of the incidents of past

 

Not only Laptops but battery explosion incidents are also not an urban legend in mobile devices:

There has been some worry about the safety of lithium-ion batteries in the past; thankfully, the great majority of them perform well

Note: If a malfunctioning lithium-ion battery causes you harm, you have the right to seek compensation from the respective authority 

Warning Signs That Your Laptop's Battery May Explode

Apart from manufacturing defects, a battery might not end up nicely for many other reasons.

  • Swollen Battery: A bloated battery can get caused by various circumstances, including physical damage to the device, temperature exposure, and poor design. If you leave a swollen lithium-ion battery in your gadget, it can be highly harmful. When a battery swells, it stops working correctly and needs to get replaced. Because a swollen battery might spark a fire, endangering you and your home. If your gadget is well-maintained, your battery is unlikely to swell up unless there is a manufacturing issue. Taking your equipment to a professional for repair is the safest option.
  • Environmental Factors: If conditions are humid and hot enough, there’s a strong chance of a short-circuit, which will lead to overheating and, eventually, an explosion.
  • Improper Handling: Tossing gadgets around, getting them wet, charging them incorrectly, and leaving them to broil in the sun are all poor choices. Because the most prevalent cause of product failure is end-users, batteries must be properly stored and protected to prevent the risk of damage.

It always gets recommended to use the original battery and charger, never to alter. Additionally, never use a battery that has got damaged or swollen already. Considering you tend to forget about your laptop or leave it on overnight. In that case, setting up a hibernation timer is recommended so that it goes down automatically after preserving your computer state.

Lithium Battery Test – Must for Manufacturers

Lithium-ion batteries will get required to pass a set of design tests beginning January 1, 2020, according to the UN Manual of Tests and Criteria sub-section 38.3. Manufacturers must offer a complete test narrative, as well as contact information for the manufacturer and a list of tests that the battery has passed and failed.

Manufacturers may get held accountable for product-related injury if they deliberately allow a faulty lithium-ion battery to reach the market or fail to undertake the required sequence of testing.

What To Do If Your Laptop's Battery Catches on Fire

If your laptop suddenly begins smoking for whatever reason, these are the steps you should take next.

  1. The best thing you can do is stop the power supply; while this will not prevent the fire from spreading, it will isolate the devices from other power sources, which might cause more difficulties.
  2. Remove any adjacent combustibles and, if possible and safe, place the device in an open area.
  3. A standard ABC dry chemical fire extinguisher like the one you’d have in your kitchen can assist, but water also helps in this situation.
  4. Stay active and monitor the situation well before the fire department arrives. Only take the actions to prevent a fire if it is safe to do so; otherwise, your life is more essential, and waiting for the fire department may be your only option, if the situation reeks havoc.

Conclusion

Laptop batteries are just as harmful as other things around us, if not more so because lithium-ion batteries can respond in several ways depending on the type of malfunction. If any of the indicators of smoke are present, remove the device or battery from service and put it in a safe location away from combustible items. 

For the most part, electronic equipment is pretty well-behaved, but when anything goes wrong, it may quickly escalate from bad to worse to horrible. It usually gets only seen with low-cost, poorly constructed products. The only way to keep safe is to treat your devices with caution.

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Dave Miller with Online Cloud Security

Dave Miller

IT Consultant at Online Cloud Security

Dave Miller is an IT Consultant for Online Cloud Security and has over 7 years of experience in the Information Technology space. He also specializes in repairing laptops & computers. In his spare time, he loves to talk about new technologies and hosts monthly IT and Cyber Security meetings in the Houston area.

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About Online Cloud Security:

Online Cloud Security is here to recommend you the most secure devices, from laptops to smartphones, we only want to provide you with products that we have tested and used ourselves for online security. Every product that we recommend is heavily inspected and tested for security against hackers, viruses, malware, and any other intruders that may want to steal your information. 

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Online Cloud Security Logo (500x500px)

About Online Cloud Security

Online Cloud Security is here to recommend you the most secure devices, from laptops to smartphones, we only want to provide you with products that we have tested and used ourselves for online security. Every product that we recommend is heavily inspected and tested for security against hackers, viruses, malware, and any other intruders that may want to steal your information. 

Recent Posts: