More and more enthusiasts or professionals are eagerly awaiting the moment to release their beloved drone into the air every day. There are on the market of all sizes and for all budgets. This mechanical prodigy would not be possible without the beating heart of the aircraft: the 4s LiPo battery. So let’s see what it is and what its strengths and weaknesses are.
What are 4s LiPo batteries?
LiPo (Lithium Polymer) batteries, developed in the former Soviet Union, have revolutionized the world of electric aviation. Unlike the old lithium-ion cell batteries, they do not need any metal container and are extremely light and versatile. The secret of its success is the ability to store a significant amount of energy in very little space. There are now hundreds of models of LiPo batteries applicable to the most varied uses. The 4s lipo battery is the best among them.
Average flight duration of drones
Although, as mentioned, 4s LiPo batteries are extremely versatile, at present, they show a not insignificant limitation for those who wish to fly the drone for hours and hours without interruptions: the battery life. So far, it is, unfortunately, a dream (but never say the last word considering the speed of technological innovation in today’s world).
According to the latest statistics, the maximum duration of the most “powerful” and expensive drones does not exceed 27/28 minutes. The average of the standard models is about 15/20 minutes. If we then go down to “cheap” categories, we can get to just 5/7 minutes.
Some tricks to make the drone battery last longer
While it is true that the LiPo battery lasts less than you hope, with a few simple tricks, you can maximize its resistance. Let’s see what they are:
- Remove camera/video camera if not strictly necessary: The drone’s weight affects performance as it requires a greater amount of effort to ensure flight. The camera also uses battery power to “feed itself,” even if you’re not taking any shots if the flight is not aimed at immortalizing something, better to avoid.
- Pay attention to the climatic conditions: Piloting the drone during particularly windy or rainy days requires a considerable effort to stay in the air.
- Appropriate flying style: Pirouettes, turns, zigzags or “risky” trajectories greatly affect battery performance. Adopt a “wise” and uniform driving style and you will see that your drone will not let you down.
- Do not completely discharge the battery: LiPo has overturned a very common rule in the past: let the battery go to a minimum before putting it back on charge. This practice, on the contrary, turns out to be particularly harmful to his “health.” If you want the LiPo to reach the old age threshold currently established by the market (from a minimum of 300 to a maximum of 500 refills), the advice is to refuel it only when the energy level is between 40% and 80%.
- Protect it from heat sources: LiPo hates the heat. If temperatures exceed 35 degrees, its performance (and therefore duration) is significantly affected. Recharge it and store it away from heat sources.
- Charge it only a few hours before use: It is not advisable to have the battery ready for several days. Set aside a few hours before your flight to make the most of it. Once the maximum charge threshold has been reached, disconnect it.
Faults of 4s LiPo batteries and safety tips
Apart from the limited duration, another important limitation – sometimes dangerous – is the flammability of 4s LiPo. There are numerous cases in which incorrect use has generated spectacular combustion. No fear! By following these easy steps, the risk is minimized:
- Always monitor the battery when it is being charged: it is not a good idea, for example, to plug it into the charger and go out or go to sleep. The wait is not that long (the average time is about 3 hours).
- Choose a ventilated place away from flammable materials: One of the limitations of the 4s LiPo battery is its high flammability. To be kept away from detergents, chemical solvents, furniture, paper. If possible, therefore, focus on ventilated places. If, in fact, some problem should occur, you would not run the risk of inhaling dangerous toxic substances and you would have a ready escape route in the open air.
- Use only dedicated 4s LiPo chargers: As this is a particularly delicate product, ensure that the power supply is always original or compatible with the type of model you are using.
- Protect it from heat: As mentioned above, heat affects outdoor performance and the life cycle of the battery. Try, as much as possible, to keep it away from high temperatures.
Do not drill them, open them, disassemble them: If any kind of anomaly occurs, contact a technician or customer assistance service. The risk of generating more harm than good if you don’t have the right knowledge is always around the corner.