How to Prevent a Fire From a Lithium Battery
The convenience of lithium-ion batteries means that they are now being used in more and more devices both at home and at work.
We’ve talked before about the dangers of lithium-ion battery fires and how – because they get very hot, very quickly – they can easily cause plenty of damage. Being able to put them out is one thing, so having a reliable and suitable extinguisher is always recommended, but even better is stopping them from happening in the first place.
This article will examine seven ways in which you can either prevent lithium-ion battery fires from happening or at least make sure you’re able to deal with the situation if it does.
Don’t buy cheap batteries
We all like a bargain, but that can sometimes mean that what we’re getting is a lower-quality product. That might not always matter, but it does when you’re dealing with lithium-ion batteries. It’s always safest to use batteries supplied or recommended by the manufacturer of your device.
Charge somewhere safe
If the worst does happen, the damage will be even greater if you’ve left your battery to charge on a flammable surface. Where possible, leave your device charging on a hard, non-flammable surface, as far away as possible from anything else that might easily catch alight in the event of a fire.
Be careful how you handle both device and battery
Damaged batteries are far more likely to catch fire, so handle both the battery and the device it’s in as carefully as possible. Remove the battery if you notice any external damage to it or it no longer works as well as it used to. It’s also best to safely dispose of it if you drop it onto a hard surface or accidentally subject it to some other kind of severe external force.
Don’t leave your lithium-ion battery to charge overnight or for any longer than necessary, as otherwise they could overheat, catch fire or even explode. Although most batteries do contain special circuits designed to stop this happening, it can and does occur, so it’s always best to play it safe and disconnect once fully charged.
Keep away from high temperatures
Lithium-ion batteries – and the devices containing them – should ideally be stored at a temperature somewhere between 4°C to 27°C. This is especially advisable when storing for long periods, but it’s always sensible not to leave them in direct sunlight for very long. It’s also important that you store them somewhere dry.
Disconnect the device if it gets hot during charging
Even if it’s not yet reached the point of being fully charged, if you notice that your battery or device is getting hotter than usual while charging, disconnect it from the power supply immediately. A certain level of heat is not unusual, but if it’s getting uncomfortable to touch, then you might have a problem.
Don’t go out while charging your device
It’s rare for a lithium-ion battery to catch fire, but when it does happen, things can get out of hand very quickly. If you set something charging and then pop out for an hour, there is a chance you might come back to a conflagration. So don’t take chances, turn your charger off while you go out, and then you can always start it up again on your return.
Here at Scutum London, we’re your local experts in all aspects of fire safety. We supply, install and maintain a number of fire extinguishers suitable for dealing with lithium-ion battery fires – special lithium-ion battery extinguishers will always be the best choice, but dry chemical powder extinguishers are also suitable.
Get in touch with us now to place your order, or to arrange for one of our experienced engineers to make a free site visit and discuss your fire safety requirements.
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About Scutum London
Scutum London is a leading expert in fire safety and security solutions for businesses and organisations located across South East England, including London and Surrey.
From fire alarms, fire extinguishers and fire risk assessments to access control, CCTV and intruder alarm systems – and a lot more besides – we offer a comprehensive range of products and services designed to keep you, your business and your staff and visitors safe.
With decades of industry experience to call on, we’re proud to hold accreditations from leading trade associations and bodies such as British Approvals for Fire Equipment (BAFE), the British Fire Consortium, the Fire Industry Association (FIA) and Security Systems and Alarms Inspection Board (SSAIB).
If you’d like to find out more about Scutum London, get in touch with our friendly team or explore our products and services on our site.