Looking after your batteries
Invest in a good charger. NiMH batteries should not be charged in a NiCad charger, unless the charger is specifically made for both chemistries. Automatic chargers are preferred to prevent over under and over charging. Standard chargers do not shut down when the battery is fully charged and can over-
When charging your batteries occasionally discharge them fully before recharging them. Even NiMh benefit from this. Be careful not to discharge too deeply. (Less than 1v per cell . E.g., a 3.6v pack to no less than 3v.) Discharging to absolute zero will make your battery useless. Some automatic chargers usually have this function built in.
Be sure to store your batteries properly. Do not leave your batteries in a hot car, or in humid conditions. The best storage conditions are a cool, dry place. Although not really necessary keeping the batteries in a refrigerator will keep the self discharge down. Best if you stick in a packet of silica gel with your batteries in a sealed bag to keep them dry. It is a good idea to charge your NiMH batteries fully before use if they have been in storage.
With new batteries it's often necessary to cycle them at least three to five times or more before they reach peak performance and capacity.
If the voltage of a single Lithium cell exceeds 4.20V, it will become unstable. When this happens the cell will over heat, swell up and rupture whereby the electrolyte can spill and catch fire! Because the technology of the LiPo batteries is different from other batteries, you must always use specialized LiPo charger. Under no circumstances attempt to charge a LiPo with a NiCd/NiMH charger. The charger parameters must match the LiPo and must be verified each time before you start the charging process.
The programmed number of cells must be the same as the LiPo or the nominal voltage must be equivalent. A 3 cell must be charged with 3 cell or 11.1V setting some do this automatically but it pays to check..
The charge current must never exceed 1C unless the manufacture has a different charge rating In most cases charging at a lower current extends the battery life.
A charger with a balancer must be used to balance the voltage of individual cells during charge. Otherwise the total pack voltage might be correct, but some individual cells might already exceeded 4.20V. E.g. a 2s pack that has reached 8.4V is fully charged, but if one cell has a voltage of 4.10V, the other cell will be at 4.30V and will overheat.
Before and after every use of your Lipo battery, inspect the pack carefully to ensure no physical damage is evident, such as swelling, splitting or torn outer heat shrink wrapper, or loose plugs and wires. Such signs can often indicate a problem exists with the battery that could lead to failure
Store Batteries in a fire proofed container
Never charge the battery unattended