If you just got a brand new mobility scooter, you may be feeling impatient when it comes to charging the battery. Just the thought of all the places you’ll be able to go, the new freedoms your scooter will give you, makes you want to start getting around right away. Unfortunately, even a fully charged battery won’t last forever and recharging it each day may not be as quick a process as you would like.
Most scooter batteries take at least six to eight hours to charge fully, and some may take closer to twelve hours. Charging time depends mostly on the type of scooter you have, but may also be impacted by environmental factors.
To get the most out of your battery, it’s important that you properly charge up between uses and keep your scooter in top condition.
How to Charge Your Mobility Scooter
Incorrect charging is the quickest way to kill your battery before its time. Since scooters often take several hours to charge, it’s easy to become impatient and start using the scooter before it’s fully charged. Frequent undercharging can cause wear and tear on your battery, shortening its lifespan.
Alternatively, overcharging may also cause damage. While most chargers will automatically shut off once the scooter is fully charged, they don’t always work correctly. For example, an old or damaged charger may not shut off at all. Also, a more high-powered type of charger may pump too much power in too short a time, overloading your battery.
The best way to avoid charging mistakes is to follow the manufacturer’s instructions for your specific scooter. Use only the provided or recommended charging cord, and check the cord regularly for signs of damage. Don’t rely completely on the charger’s auto-shutoff function – check on it from time to time to make sure it’s still working properly.
If your scooter takes six to eight hours to charge, you can usually plug in just before bed and unplug as soon as you get up in the morning. This way, you won’t lose any time stuck at home waiting for your battery to reach 100 percent. Come morning, your scooter should be ready to take you wherever you need to go that day.
How to Make your Charge Last Longer
Wouldn’t it be nice if you didn’t have to worry about your battery running out of juice when you’re away from home? There are several ways you can not only get more out of each charge but also extend the life of your battery.
Make sure the battery is fully charged
This can’t be overstated enough. Allow your battery to recharge fully each day (or night). Just like a full tank of gas will last much longer than a tank that’s three-quarters full, a fully-charged battery will last longer than a battery that’s at 90 percent. A full charge will get you farther each day, and it will keep your battery in top working order for a longer period of time.
Avoid extreme temperatures and weather conditions
Scooter batteries charge and operate best at a room temperature of around 77 degrees. Though it’s not always possible to maintain this constant temperature, keep in mind that rain, snow, high humidity, summer heat, and winter cold will all put additional strain on your scooter and its battery.
If you have to use your scooter in poor weather conditions, try to limit the exposure. As soon as possible, return your scooter to room temperature, clean and dry it properly, plug it into the charger, and allow it to return to a full charge.
Keep your battery and scooter in top condition
Charge the battery daily (or nightly), even if you don’t plan to use it the following day. Make sure to follow regular maintenance routines according to the suggestions for your specific scooter. Occasionally scrub the battery terminals with a mix of baking soda and water to keep them clean. Get your scooter serviced regularly.
The longer you keep your scooter and its battery functioning like new, the longer it will hold a charge and the more dependable it will be.
Frequently Asked Questions
How long do mobility scooter batteries last?
The battery’s lifespan will depend on the kind of care it receives and how often it is used. The type of battery your scooter takes may also factor in.
Generally, most scooter batteries will last between one and two years, but you should refer to your user manual to find more specific information about your particular scooter and the type of battery it needs.
How far can my scooter travel between charges?
Again, the distance you can travel on a single charge will vary from scooter to scooter, and may even change based on the weather conditions, the terrain you travel over, and other environmental factors. A mobility scooter’s travel range will be longer if it has a fully-charged battery – it can even reach between six and twenty miles. However, some types of scooters can make it more than twice that distance on a single charge.
What should I do if my battery won’t charge?
You may experience any number of problems with an old battery. Maybe it never fully charges anymore, or it drains quickly after you remove it from the charger. It may die completely so that no amount of time on the charger will bring back any life to it.
You should always try to find out what’s causing the problem before simply replacing the battery–especially if the battery isn’t very old. Look for any visual damage to the battery. Test the cord by plugging in and checking for the indicator light to come on, or by using a multimeter to check the voltage. Look for damage to any components of the charging port.
If there are no apparent defects, there’s a good chance that it’s simply time for a new battery.