Here are 6 tips to extend the battery life.
6. Ditch the Camera
It’s great that you can attach a camera to your quadcopter and record your flight, but unless you’re serious about aerial photography or videography, you may want to ditch the camera.
Not only does a camera add weight to the drone, but many cameras also connect to the copter, draining its battery life at a much faster pace. The additional weight of the camera makes it more difficult for the quadcopter to fly and requires it to use more power to compensate for the added weight.
5. Choose a Battery with a Higher mAh
Most quadcopters come equipped with mid-range batteries that really don’t offer you the longest flight time possible. If you really want longer flight times, you’ll need to upgrade to a battery with a higher mAh. Check your machine’s specifications for the maximum mAh your model can handle.
Keep in mind that a higher mAh will only be beneficial to a certain point. The bigger the battery is, the heavier it will be. If the battery is too heavy, the added weight will only negate the extra power. Just keep the battery’s weight in mind when choosing an upgrade.
4. Experiment with Propeller Size
If you’re not attaching a camera, a smaller propeller may be the better option.The size of your propellers can have an effect on the amount of power you use. If you’re planning on attaching a camera to your device, you may want to consider a larger propeller.
Begin with the propellers size that the manufacturer recommends and experiment from there. Make note of how long your battery lasts to see which propeller size gives you the longest flight time.
3. Fly in the Right Conditions
Flying in the right conditions is also important. If you’re flying your device outdoors, you want to avoid flying during windy or rainy conditions. Wind will make it more difficult for your copter to turn, hover and remain stable, which will drain more power from the battery than usual. Rain can have the same effect.
Ideally, you want to fly your quadcopter during fair whether with a light breeze at most. This will allow you to get the most out of your battery life.
2. Follow the 40-80 Rule
At one time, it was good practice to charge your rechargeable batteries to full and then drain them completely before recharging.
Things have changed, and if you’re using a lithium-ion battery to power your quadcopter, you may actually be shortening its life by draining the battery completely.
The average lithium battery can be fully charged and drained between 300 and 500 times before it needs to be replaced.
Each time you drain the battery, it becomes weaker and your battery life continues to diminish. You can easily extend the overall life of your battery by simple filling it up only halfway, or between 40 and 80 percent. As a general rule of thumb, you also want to avoid overcharging the batteries as well.
The temperature can also have an effect on the battery’s life. Charging your battery in a room that’s 100 degrees F can actually reduce the battery’s capacity by 35%.
Bottom line: Charge only halfway and recharge in a cool environment.
1. Charge at the Right Time
Do you have a habit of recharging your battery days before you plan on using your new shiny toy? If so, you may be inadvertently shortening the life of your battery. Ideally, you want to charge your battery just a few hours before you plan on using your quadcopter. A rechargeable battery will lose a percentage of its charge each day that it’s left off of the charger.
These tips can help you get more flying time out of every charge, but don’t expect miracles. If your copter boasts a 10 minute flight time, it’s unrealistic to hope for a 20+ minute flight time after making these tweaks. For this reason, you should always have an extra set of batteries on hand so you can continue the fun even after your first battery dies.