Battery not charging?

I had my VEX IQ kit in storage for a while, and took it out today. The battery has been charging for about 6 hours, but when placed in the brain shows no sign of life. Doesn’t power on at all.

There is a blinking red light on the charger, which I think means it is charging, but I would think that after 6 hours there would be at least a partial charge.

Anything to do here? Just leave it plugged in for longer?

Blinking red means battery fault. It is supposed to mean that the battery is either too hot, or is bad. However, I have found that charger sometimes gets into that state for no apparent reason. Unplugging and replugging the charger worked for me.

Solid Green = charged
Solid Red = charging
Blinking red = problem

I see, blinking red = fault.

Plugging and replugging the charger with the battery in it led to an alternating green and red blinking light, which settled back to a blinking red light.

Plugging and replugging the charger with the battery NOT init led to a steady green light, putting the battery in led to several seconds of green and red alternate blinking, leading to red blinking.

I suspect leaving the battery in storage, it discharged to the point where the charger may not recognized and charge it. Seems strange that this is not accounted for in the charger design.

At this point I can:

  1. Try to charge the battery off a bench supply (7v, low current) and try to get it past the minimal charge threshold
  2. RMA the battery
  3. RMA the charger

Any thoughts?

I got no idea on how to fix a bad battery… so I would go for option 4) Buy a new battery. Consider buying more than one cause in my case we start having performance issues when battery is near 50%. We use 4 batteries during competitions, but they have been hit hard at daily practices, so we are thinking on buying a couple more before the world.

We have had one battery discharge too far for the smart charger to recognise/recharge so gave it a little kick from a bench power supply and the recharged on the smart charger. Has been fine since then.

Interesting… I know a couple of teams that have lost some of their batteries… how do you do that to tell them?

It’s one of these things that you do very much at your own risk. My method is not at all scientific…get a bench PSU set to 12V and very quickly flash the power across the terminals (correct polarity), just for half a second or so. Then stick the battery back on the smart charger and it will charge. To be honest, you could probably achieve the same by just giving the battery a little charge from a PSU at the correct current and voltage.

Yeah, I think the right thing is to get a replacement battery. VEX has been very helpful on that front, and will send a replacement.

Another “at your own risk” technique is to try freezing the battery (in a Ziploc bag to prevent condensation) for 12 hours, let it thaw for about an hour, and then try charging it. When I did this, it would show as charged after a few minutes, so I removed the battery and replaced it in the charger, and then it charged for longer. After about the third try, it took what appears to be a full charge.

There is an “unintentional feature” where a motor will turn on the Brain if the motor shaft is turned. I wonder if this could maybe add a bit of charge to the battery as well to bump it over the minimum charge threshold and then become recognized by the charger…? Probably not, but worth a try. Seems I remember there was something preventing this in the internals.