A hoverboard or a self-balancing electronic scooter is not only a trendy gadget to own but is also an efficient transportation device.
But since the fire incidents of 2015 and 2016, users have been facing numerous hoverboard charging problems.
After receiving the reports on the fire incidents, retail stores removed many hoverboards from their shelves. Some ended up in ill-reputed online marketplaces, while others in warehouses.
Such incidents resulted in a rapid deterioration of battery quality. Unfortunately, these sub-par hoverboards somehow made their way to consumer’s houses.
Many users have reported that though their hoverboards are just a few months old, they do not run as long as they should. They are facing numerous charging issues.
What are some of the most common hoverboard charging problems? This article will inform you of those problems and how to solve them.
Hoverboard Charging Problems
Some of the most common charging-related issues that hoverboard riders face are as follows:
1.Batteries Unable To Retain Charge
Hoverboard batteries are significantly powerful and generally last for 1-2 years. Each charge lasts for 5-6 hours. But some batteries, though newly bought, fail to retain charge. Sometimes, even after charging for 2-4 hours,
some hoverboards do not give satisfactory results.
The charger light turns from green to red when plugged with the hoverboard, which indicates that the batteries are healthy. Problems arise when the charger light remains green, or hoverboards blink red lights continuously.
You can carry out the following steps to determine how long your batteries will last:
- If you see that the charger remains green, and does not turn red, it either means the hoverboard batteries are full and do not require further charging, or it may mean that your batteries are non-responsive to charging.
- In the latter case, the batteries may have become damaged. You can use a multimeter to test the battery voltage.
- If the reading comes somewhere between 4 and 6 volts, your batteries should be fine. Lower readings may mean your batteries are not working correctly.
- To check if your hoverboard batteries are full, disconnect the hoverboard from the charger and turn the hoverboard on. If it turns on successfully and runs at top speed for 3-4 hours, then your batteries are alright.
- If it turns on but has a red blinking light at the center of the gadget, that indicates the batteries have gone bad and need replacement.
- If the hoverboard does not turn on at all, either the batteries or the motherboard could be damaged.
2. Charger Blinkers Non-Responsive
If it is not the battery, then it might be the charger that could be the reason behind hoverboard charging problems. To check whether it is the charger which is to blame, you can check with this step-by-step diagnosis:
- When you plug the charger first into the wall socket and then into the hoverboard, the light should change from green to red. If this indicator light change occurs, that means there is no problem with your charger.
- If the charger indicator light goes neither green nor red, then there could be a problem with your charger.
- If you are sure that the wall-socket is functioning correctly, then there is a definite problem with your hoverboard charger, and you should replace it with a new one.
3. Charger Gets Heated-Up
It is not so uncommon to find your hoverboard charger a little hot while charging your hoverboard, but if you find it heating up during other times, then there might be an issue.
4. Charger Does Not Go Green
After plugging into the main wall-socket, if the charger of your hoverboard does not show a green light, then there could be a problem with the socket. Maybe it is not receiving power.
Plugin your mobile phone charger with the wall socket, and connect it with your mobile phone and check if your mobile is charging. You can try this with alternative gadgets or devices.
If you find that other devices are not charging when plugged into the same wall socket, then there is an obvious defect in the socket or the wiring system. You may call in your electrician to take care of this matter.
5. Current Is Not Flowing From Charger To Batteries
Say the charger is working, and so is the main wall-plug, but yet the charger blinker has not turned from green to red. You have also made sure that your batteries are working. What could be the reason behind hoverboard charging problems then?
It leaves us with one option—the flow of current to the batteries might be facing some obstruction. In this case, there might be something wrong with the wiring system, connectors, or motherboard. Follow these steps:
Open the hoverboard enclosure, and check the wires that connect the charger and the motherboard. If you find that the wires have become loose or have detached, simply get a new charging port.
If you find that the wiring system is intact, move on to the connector. You should see a 2-pin connector attached to the motherboard or mainboard.
Red and Black Wires:
If the connector is okay, then check the red and black wires that lead from the motherboard to the batteries. These red and black wires occasionally get cut while drilling screws onto the bottom plastic shells during assembly. If you find that the red and black wires are drilled-through or cut-off, then maintain extreme precaution and take the help of a professional.
List Of Light Indicators That Will Help You Diagnose The Problem
Hoverboard Green Light:
When it is flashing, blinking, or flickering, the charge rate is between 11 and 21%. If the blinker is solid green with no flickering, then the battery charge is between 21% and 100%.
Hoverboard Red Light:
Red light with a beeping sound means that the batteries are almost dead. Red light flickering means that there is less than a 10% charge in the batteries. Red light and the beeping sound can also be seen when you try to ride your hoverboard very fast.
Hoverboard Orange Light:
It means that the battery is damaged or faulty. In certain hoverboard models, an orange light indicates that the hoverboard is on charging mode.
Why Do Hoverboards Have These Charging Problems?
According to investigations, cheaper hoverboards, with prices at or under $400, contain non-certified Lithium-ion batteries. Some of these so-called affordable manufactures do not show the specifications of the batteries properly or in full.
Non-certified Li-ion batteries could prove to be dangerous as they have a higher chance of exploding in certain conditions, such as sub-zero or hot climates. They could explode even without any plausible reason.
You can check out this detailed article on different hoverboard brands to have a deeper idea of the price of the available hoverboard models.
Long Warehouse Storage
Back in the year 2015 and 2016, consumers reported a considerable number of incidents concerning hoverboards bursting into flames. Various online outlets stopped selling hoverboards completely.
As a result, the hoverboards ended up in the warehouses where the batteries went bad. People bought them and suffered the consequences.
Non-Certified Or Recalled Product
At times you might find a deal in the market, which is too good to be true—a famous brand at a low price. Be aware that you might be stepping into a trap.
These unbelievably cheap products might have been either sitting around at the warehouse for far too long, recalled or not UL certified.
Listening To Music While Riding
Another reason behind hoverboard charging problems, often overlooked, is the Bluetooth.
If you connect to your hoverboard Bluetooth often to listen to music while riding, then be assured that the charge will not last as long.
Each hoverboard charge is supposed to last for 5-6 hours, but listening to Bluetooth will cut that time in half.
Draining Or Overcharging
Li-ion batteries should not be allowed to reach zero battery charge. Draining batteries frequently could lead the batteries to get damaged.
Hoverboards contain a sequential arrangement of Li-ion batteries inside them. The Battery Management System, or BMS, is responsible for making them work harmoniously.
BMS acts as a safety tool because when the voltage of the batteries reaches a deficient level, it stops sending current through the circuits to the battery.
This tolerance level varies with batteries of different voltages. For 36v batteries, the tolerance level is approximately 30v.
Overcharging of batteries takes place in cheap, classified, and non-certified hoverboards. The quality of the circuitry inside the charger is what is different between a quality hoverboard and a classified hoverboard.
How To Solve These Hoverboard Charging Problems?
Replace Broken Battery
A broken or non-responsive battery cannot be repaired but is replaceable. The hoverboard batteries that are available in most outlets are the blue shrink-wrapped ones, gray or green ones.
The blue ones are one-size-fits-all types, meaning they work for all models and brands of hoverboards that were available in the markets between 2015 and 2016.
The gray and the green ones are also good but were less popular at that time. Also remember, do not ever purchase an old, repaired battery.
Aim For Well-Known Manufacturers And Certified Batteries
In recent years, the testing and certification of Li-ion batteries have become more stringent. The new policies have resulted in the production of new and improved Li-ion batteries that have black plastic shells.
The shells are always plastic and never metallic, since metals are conductors of heat and electricity, while plastic is not.
These batteries have smarter and more responsive thermal sensors, which prevents overheating and potential fire hazards.
Check For Good Quality Chargers
If you check the charger casings, you should find the UL logo of certification, which will ensure that using the charger is safe. UL stands for Underwriter’s Laboratories, and they carry out safety and quality tests on a wide range of products.
If you find that the charger heats up rapidly and the UL logo is missing, replace the charger immediately. A good quality charger lasts for around two years, while a poor-quality one will get damaged earlier than 4-6 months.
It is also essential to have complete knowledge of charging a hoverboard following the right way.
Ensure Correct Voltage Of Chargers
Make sure that the voltage supplied by the charger is compatible with the voltage that the batteries can endure. If you try to use a high voltage charger with a low-voltage battery, your hoverboard will run a risk of fire or explosion.
Usually, a hoverboard requires a 24v or 36v charger, depending on the hoverboard model. 25.2v and 25.9v batteries are also available.
Multimeters are useful for checking battery voltage. Fully charged batteries will give a reading between 36 and 42v. Readings lower than 30v means there is not much power left inside and that it is time for a replacement.
Ensure The Hoverboard Is Brand-New
By making sure that your hoverboard is a brand-new purchase and not just a recalled product, you can alleviate many hoverboard charging problems.
When a product has safety issues, the manufacturer retrieves the faulty product and compensates the consumer, which is known as a product recall. Since the 2015-16 incidents, the Consumer Product Safety Commission or CSPC came up with a list of the hoverboard brands that were recalled. If your hoverboard brand or model falls in this list, contact the manufacturer and request a replacement or try to return it to the store you bought it from.
Always buy from a reputed or trusted seller or store, and ask for the UL certificate, sticker, or logo.
In this case, you can check the best-rated hoverboard for beginners, if you are looking for a beginner-friendly hoverboard.
Be Careful When You Are Going For Cheaper Batteries
You might want to purchase batteries that will cost you less—just be careful when you plan to do that.
The age of the batteries is one of the factors you should be considered first. Beware of batteries that were sitting around in the warehouses for a long time.
Try to purchase batteries that have been manufactured in the past 6 to 12 months at the least.
Resetting Your Hoverboard
Sometimes, resetting a hoverboard can help fix the charging problem, if there is a minor problem. Since this can solve the minor charging problems, so you can try this out.
Frequently Asked Questions
1. How do I know if my hoverboard battery is bad?
Answer: If the charger fails to turn from green to red when connected to the hoverboard, it may mean something inside the hoverboard is not functioning correctly.
Most of the time, it is usually the battery that is the culprit. If hoverboard red lights keep flashing, it may mean that the batteries need replacement.
An orange light indicator in certain hoverboard models will indicate that the batteries are damaged. You can also try out a voltmeter or multimeter to check the battery voltage.
2. What happens if I overcharged my hoverboard?
Answer: Cheap hoverboards with sub-standard or non-certified batteries become overcharged. Brand hoverboards do not get overcharged, thanks to the smart BMS installed inside them.
If you find that the batteries have become hot, or have swollen up or smoke is coming out, unplug the hoverboard from the charger immediately.
3. Can I leave my hoverboard plugged in overnight?
Answer: It is a bad idea to keep the hoverboard plugged in overnight. Good manufacturers automatically cut off the power supply to the batteries when fully charged, but sub-par manufactures don’t. Charging for 2-4 hours is enough for a hoverboard.
4. How long should a hoverboard stay charged?
Ans: It should stay charged for 4 to 6 hours. Remember, though, Li-ion batteries tend to self-discharge whether in use or not.
However, hoverboards lose charge quicker in extreme temperature conditions. Storing hoverboards in too hot or too cold places will add to hoverboard charging problems.
Therefore it is recommended that you store your hoverboard battery at a temperature between 60 to 75 degrees Fahrenheit.
5. Can bad batteries be fixed?
Answer: You can fix them, but the cost and the effort that will go into repairing one will not be worth it.
It is better to replace a damaged one with a new battery. Shrink-wrapped batteries come in plastic sheaths or cages, which are disposable.
Newer hoverboard batteries come with built-in screw-in holes so you would not need the battery cages any longer.
Hoverboards are futuristic gadgets. They are quite popular among young and old alike.
The fire incidents of the years 2015 and 2016, however, took away some of the sparks. Marketplaces removed many hoverboards and stored them in the warehouses where they lay around and became damaged.
Unfortunately, consumers bought some of these old, sub-par hoverboards. The wave also brought in some cheaper and non-certified hoverboards in the marketplace. These non-certified, sub-par products have batteries that do not last long.
As a result, users started to encounter hoverboard charging problems. Low-quality batteries, bad wiring systems, or faulty motherboards cause the charging problems. Whichever the case is, however, most of these issues can be solved either by replacement or repair.
Do you have any further questions regarding the charging problems of hoverboards? Feel free to leave them here, and we will get back to you with reliable information.