It's possible to revive both nickel cadmium (Nicad) and nickel metal hydride (Ni MH) cordless drill batteries. These batteries wear down and eventually die over their normal life cycle. The cordless drill battery resurrection process is simple and quick, but can be hazardous if you overcharge or mishandle the rechargeable batteries.
Things You'll Need
- Needle-nose pliers
- Small container
- 12-volt power source
- Black 14-gauge wire
- Red 14-gauge wire
- Small red and black alligator clamps
- Electrical tape
Mark the positive and negative leads on the battery case, using the voltmeter to determine which is positive and which is negative.
Unscrew the cordless drill battery case to reveal the rechargeable batteries within the case. Carefully remove the top of the cordless drill battery case. Keep the screws and the spring in a container so you can find them during reassembly.
Lift the battery cells from the battery casing. If the batteries are shrink-wrapped together, cut enough of the plastic away with scissors to reveal the top and bottoms of the battery cells.
Locate the point at which the wires from the battery pack terminal run down through the silver cardboard insulator. Mark this opening before you remove the battery terminal for easier reassembly.
Loosen and lift off the terminal piece, using needle-nose pliers. The metal band underneath the terminal piece must be insulated with electrical tape before you proceed.
Remove the silver cardboard insulation piece and place this piece aside. Remove the shrink wrap from the top and bottom of the battery cells, so the battery leads are exposed.
Test the batteries within the pack to determine which cells need reconditioning. Use the battery tester and mark all batteries that are not at full charge capacity.
Find the positive, or raised end, on the first battery to be reconditioned. Place the black alligator clamp from the 12-volt power source on the negative end of the battery cell, while holding the red alligator clamp to the positive end for no longer than two seconds.
Release both clamps. Using the battery tester, test the battery cell to see if it has been fully recharged. If not, repeat the zapping process.
Repeat the zapping process with all batteries until they have all been reconditioned and then reassemble the battery pack.
Tips & Warnings
- Put on safety goggles, insulated gloves and long-sleeve shirts before beginning the reconditioning process.
- Don't get your wires crossed or an explosion may occur.
- Photo Credit battery image by Alison Bowden from Fotolia.com pliers image by Jakub Cejpek from Fotolia.com battery tester on white image by JoLin from Fotolia.com
How to Revive 12 Volt Battery
A dead 12-volt battery is one that can no longer maintain its charge for any long period of time. More often than...
How to Restore a NiCad Battery
As you use nickel-cadmium (NiCad) rechargeable batteries and continuously recharge them, they hold less and less of a full charge over time....
How to Test a Drill Battery Pack With Three Terminals
Drill battery packs can contain nickel cadmium, nickel metal hydride, lithium ion or lithium polymer cells. Lithium ion and lithium polymer cells...
How to Resurrect 18V Batteries
Eighteen-volt batteries are actually multiple low-voltage batteries wired in series to produce 18 volts. The ability to resurrect an 18-volt battery depends...
The Best Cordless Drill Batteries
Cordless drills use a rechargeable battery that is either nickel based or lithium ion. The best cordless drill battery for your drill...