Lipo Battery Safety... Should I quit the hobby before even getting started

Discussion in 'Safety & Regulation' started by richr69, Aug 17, 2017.

  1. richr69

    richr69 Member

    I have been involved with R/C cars w/nimh batteries well over 10 years. I recently bought parts to build a quadcopter along with Lipo batteris. I've have read ALOT about Lipo's. My big concern is worrying about them going off and starting a fire. I currently have them in the basement on the concrete floor away from anything flammable. I have a decent charger that I bought last year IMAX B6 Mini (Authentic) and I know it can handle Lipos up to 6S.

    My main fear is storing them in the house when I'm no using them. I read about the precautions of charging and discharging (for storage) outside. I have read about the different storage DIY cases and even the BAT-SAFE.

    I'm paranoid to the point, part of me thinks I should just sell the quad/parts and the batteries, and be done with it.

    Anyway, curious how others deal with the Lipo batteries, especially someone who is relatively new to them.

    Thanks,
    -Rich
     
  2. mozquito1

    mozquito1 Summer's over, where's my thumbless gloves

    This is how I store mine. This is just one box. If they puff up or a cell goes then I take em to work to dispose of em.
    Store them @ 3.80v per cell.
    I use same charger but 2 of & 2 six battery charge plate. IMG_20170817_205631920-768x1367.jpg
    They can be dangerous but your being Noid. Look after them Boom, but don't be scared. Some times they puff a bit then contract it's when they puff & go all squidgy they have probably had it and don't hold charge very well or voltage sag. Which all leads to not much fun.
     
  3. GJH105775

    GJH105775 Avid Linux User, and U.S. Air Force 1C6 Moderator

    Just make sure to not short them and don't save a bad battery. By not shorting them that includes making sure not to close the lid to the ammo can that you store all of your lipos in right on the lead, heard of that happening. Which is the next point, try to have a good place to store and charge, then don't charge while unattended or inattentive. Keeping them neat in your storage is helpful for avoiding bad stuff from happening. Then also make sure to check for and prevent prop strikes. If you get a nicked wire don't just hope it will be fine or go away, and avoid tape if possible. Use something like heatshrink or a new lead that way you don't short while charging or flying.


    Do all of that and you should be good, most of it is just common sense with some basic safety.
     
  4. Mike

    Mike =) Admin

    I'm also overly paranoid. It looks like you're already using a quality charger, which is important. Aside from that, here's what I do:

    1. Always get rid of any battery that has visible damage and/or becomes puffed up. I take mine to a battery shop and they recycle them for me.

    2. I charge in a makeshift battery bunker, which is basically a cubby surrounded by cinder blocks with a sand bag resting over the top of it. If the battery catches fire, the bag will melt and the sand pour out and smother it. I haven't proved that this works yet, but it's fairly common and others have tested the theory.

    3. I always bring all of my batteries down or up to storage voltage before storing them. This is good for battery life, but the habit also helps avoid the mistake of storing fully charged batteries. Less charge = less energy if the battery does become unstable and something bad happens.

    4. I store my batteries in ammo cans with lots of tiny holes drilled in the top to allow any fire to vent if one does occur. There are videos of batteries blowing the tops off of ammo cans and lots of argument about whether or not the vent holes even help you, but the videos are of overcharged 6S batteries as far as I've seen. In general, if you're storing at storage voltage and you've got some vent holes, you should be in fairly good shape.

    5. Within the ammo cans, I keep batteries separated inside of lipo safe bags. Depending on the size, I may put more than one battery in each bag, but it's mostly to try to keep a battery that catches fire from causing the entire can of batteries to go off.

    6. I store my cans on the concrete floor of my garage with a cheap smoke detector, fire extinguisher, and an extra bag of sand near by.

    Also - "never leave a charging battery unattended". As paranoid as I am, I will sometimes violate this, but only when I charge right in the middle of the floor in my garage with the battery bunker setup mentioned.
     
    GJH105775 likes this.
  5. mozquito1

    mozquito1 Summer's over, where's my thumbless gloves

  6. GJH105775

    GJH105775 Avid Linux User, and U.S. Air Force 1C6 Moderator

    If you have a house fire I doubt it is going to be lipos with a setup like this hahaha.

    Awesome setup though. Wonder if a cheaper, smaller (3D printer or smaller size) battery bunker could be made. Sounds like a really good idea, even if it wont stop the heat from the runaway reaction it will stop the plastics from catching fire then keep a fire from spreading which is basically all you are trying to do.
     
  7. Chuck

    Chuck Well-Known Member

    I store mine the cheap and old fashioned way. I have a 30-gallon galvanized steel garbage can that I put them in, put the lid on top, and a cinderblock on the lid. If one or more lipos can blow that apart, then in effect we're all flying remote-controlled bombs.
     
  8. richr69

    richr69 Member

    All good replies. I really appreciate the feed back. I just got to work up the nerve :)
     
  9. richr69

    richr69 Member

    Is that a Ammo container? I could not tell from the picture.
     
  10. dragger201

    dragger201 If it ain't broke, don't fix it??? You kidding?

    Hey Mike.........I like that............I'm gonna steal that and set up for my shop...........thanks........
     
  11. Kilroy

    Kilroy New Member

    I charge and store in the center of a concrete floor of the screened in lanai (I'm in Florida so cold isn't an issue). I like the sandbag idea. You can't be too careful with LiPos.
     
  12. holtneil

    holtneil Well-Known Member Moderator

    Hi guy I know I am a bit late on this thread I have 6 x 3000 mah 8 x 4000 mah 12 x 2200 mah Lipo some are 3 years old i have never had one go off even in a crash not to say it may never happen but I never leave them at full charge for more than 2 days
    Charging at to high a rate is a major fire risk , if your worried about charging the Imax mini will take a plug in temperature sensor you rest the battery on so if it gets to hot it will cut off the charge
    I agree with the guys about ammo tins to store them in and if you have not room for a charging bunker the a Lipo sack is a good route to go , I store in a Lipo sack once charged
     
    mozquito1 likes this.
  13. mozquito1

    mozquito1 Summer's over, where's my thumbless gloves

    That's my MO 2 days tops. Then I will put them to storage.
     
    holtneil likes this.
  14. rcfans

    rcfans Member

    I would like to recommend a Hobbymate lipo safe bag for charging and storage of lipos, which I had one and seems good, there is also a fire test video on youtube

     

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