Which 18650 batteries to choose for an electric screwdriver

Table of Contents:

How to find out which 18650 batteries are better in terms of technical characteristics

To determine the optimal 18650 battery, the calculation of parameters in accordance with Ohm’s Law is used. To determine the parameters, you need to know the operating voltage U and the resistance of the device R, which is measured with a test device switched to ohmmeter mode.

The ratio of U and R allows you to determine the current in the power circuit, based on the analysis of the value, a battery is selected that will work without overload. When choosing, the capacity and dimensions of the battery are additionally taken into account, which is located in the body of the tool.

Current output of lithium-ion batteries

Current output is an additional parameter that characterizes the battery, the value is applied to the battery case, measured in A (amperes) or mA (milliamperes). Batteries with a higher parameter are called high-current (High drain marking) and have a reduced capacity. When choosing a battery, it is necessary to take into account the characteristics of the electric drive, an increased load on the battery leads to overheating of the structure and premature failure of the unit.

Lithium-ion battery capacity

To indicate the capacity of batteries, the unit of measurement is Ah (ampere per hour) or mAh (milliampere per hour), the digital value is applied to a label on the battery case. The parameter determines the duration of the battery operation under the standard load until the capacity drops to zero. Batteries are distinguished by a reduced manifestation of the “memory effect”, which consists in a reversible drop in capacity (observed when the charge of a partially dead battery is restored).

Standard Li-Ion devices do not allow deep discharge, which irreversibly destroys the anode and cathode material. The longevity of operation is affected by the charging modes, with an increased voltage in the power circuit, the batteries degrade with a simultaneous drop in capacity. Excessive voltage by 4% leads to a decrease in capacity by 50%, and with subsequent charging with violation of the parameters, the capacity will again decrease by 2 times.

Types of lithium-ion batteries

The industry produces several varieties of 18650 series batteries:

  • Lithium-cobalt cell designed for use in devices with reduced energy consumption.
  • Lithium-manganese node featuring increased power and improved stability.
  • Lithium-nickel-manganese-cobalt-oxide battery with increased power and energy intensity. To further improve the characteristics, the anode is doped with silicon, but the material negatively affects the durability of the battery. Devices are used to drive electric motors in tools or vehicles.
  • Lithium-iron-phosphate battery, resistant to over-discharge and adapted to be installed instead of sulfuric acid batteries in traction drives.
  • Lithium-nickel-cobalt-aluminum-oxide cell with increased power and extended service life (compared to lithium-cobalt type products). It is better not to use the device for an electric screwdriver, since the battery retained the main disadvantages of lithium-cobalt batteries.
  • Lithium-titanium assembly equipped with a lithium titanate crystal anode. The cathode is made of graphite, the voltage at the terminals is 2.4 V. The device supports accelerated charging modes, allows operation at low temperatures. The drop in capacity during cooling to 30 ° C does not exceed 20%. The product is not susceptible to thermal breakdown, but low energy consumption and increased cost inhibit the proliferation of lithium-titanium cells.

High-current 18650 batteries for electric screwdriver: types of batteries and which ones are better to choose

Standard nickel-cadmium cells installed in hand tool battery banks have a reduced resource. The use of high-current 18650 batteries for an electric screwdriver can increase the battery life of the tool. Stable battery performance allows high torque to be maintained until fully charged.

650 batteries. which is better

18650 batteries are produced by many enterprises located in Southeast Asia. When choosing products, one should pay attention to the chemical composition of the element, to the presence or absence of a built-in electronic protective unit. In addition, the current-voltage characteristics of the battery are analyzed, which will ensure the declared performance of the tool.

Lithium Cobalt

The device has an increased capacity, but does not allow accelerated charging modes (due to intense gas evolution). The layered cathode is made of an alloy of lithium and cobalt oxide; pressed graphite is used for the anode. Normal voltage is 3.6 V, the use of 4 cells in series to replace acid batteries is not recommended as the products are not intended for use in equipment with high energy consumption.

An increase in the load causes overheating and destruction of the case with the leakage of electrolyte into the cavity of the device. The products are designed to discharge and charge with a current not exceeding the rated capacity. It is not recommended to charge the battery to a voltage higher than the permissible parameter (4.2 V). Also, products are distinguished by a reduced resource and reduced thermal stability (the temperature of thermal breakdown does not exceed 150 ° C). When fully charged, the likelihood of breakdown increases.

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To restore the operating parameters, it is recommended to use microprocessor-controlled charging blocks that allow adjusting the charging parameters. An additional disadvantage of the battery is the low environmental friendliness of production, the spent cells must be disposed of. The products are used in cell phones, tablets or laptop batteries, the product life is up to 1000 discharge and charge cycles (depending on operating conditions).

Protected and unprotected lithium-ion batteries

Protected batteries are labeled with the Protected prefix. On the negative pole there is a metal shield, under which a round-shaped board with a microprocessor is installed. The protective block is connected to the positive terminal with a separate flat ribbon cable with an insulator that runs along the battery case. The node provides short-circuit protection and prevents excessive current flow during charging. Over-discharge protection is provided, when the voltage drops, the circuit opens.

To reduce the cost of the product, the practice of refusing to install the controller, the batteries are marked Unprotected on the case. Since the protective block is excluded from the circuit, it is recommended to install batteries in devices with reduced power consumption. The user independently controls the level of battery charging, to restore capacity, a microprocessor-controlled charging unit is used.

How to choose an 18650 battery for vape: mech mod and boards

When choosing an 18650 battery for vaping, it should be understood that modern technologies do not yet allow the production of batteries with all the maximum characteristics for:

  • containers,
  • recoil current,
  • number of charge-discharge cycles,
  • safety of use.

Therefore, we recommend, first of all, to pay attention to the characteristics that are most important for you and your device. For an electronic cigarette, the output current is important, which ensures the operation of a particular vape device at maximum power, as well as safety of use. We recommend choosing 18650 lithium manganese IMR or lithium iron phosphate LiFePO4 batteries for your e-cigarette. They deliver high current and are the safest to use.

When choosing an 18650 battery for an electronic cigarette, first of all, you should decide on the type of device:

  • Mechanical mod (mech mod).
  • Electronic board.
  • Mech mods do not have electronics that control the discharge. Hence, it is easy to exceed the maximum current allowed for a given 18650 battery, which can lead to overheating. Therefore, for a mech mod, it is worth choosing batteries with a current output of 20 or more Amperes, and, preferably, with built-in protection. However, lithium-manganese and lithium-iron phosphate batteries without protection can also be used in mechanics.
  • For the electronic board, you can choose all batteries for the mech mod, as well as higher-capacity batteries, but with a lower current, up to 10 Amperes. But 15.18 Amperes is better. The presence of a protective board in the battery is not required, since the charge and discharge processes are controlled by the electronics.

8650 Batteries: Alternative Marking Decoding

Some manufacturers use a different marking for 18650 batteries, which contains three letters directly indicating the chemical composition.

Deciphering the alternative marking of 18650 batteries

Designation Chemical composition
LCO Lithium Cobalt Oxyde. Lithium, cobalt oxide.
NCM Nickel Cobalt Manganese. Nickel-cobalt-manganese oxides.
NCA Nickel Cobalt Aluminum. Nickel-cobalt-aluminum oxides.
LMO Lithium Manganese Oxyde. Lithium manganese oxide.
LFP Lithium Ferrum Phosphate. Lithium iron phosphate.
NCR Nickel Cobalt Rechargeable. Nickel-cobalt cathode.

NCR lithium-cobalt battery 18650. Panasonic NCR18650GA Li-Ion 3500 mAh

It should be borne in mind that both markings can be applied to 18650 vaping batteries.

650 battery: dimensions

18650 vape batteries, like all cylindrical lithium-ion batteries, have a simple size (format) marking:

  • The first two digits indicate the diameter of the element D, in millimeters.
  • Next two digits. the length of the element L, in millimeters, multiplied by 10 so that no fractional numbers are obtained.

Thus, the format of 18650 batteries means dimensions: diameter 18 mm, length 65 mm. Elements with a protection board are 1.5 mm longer.

Characteristics of 18650 batteries: capacity, voltage, current

Let us first analyze the main characteristics of 18650 batteries for electronic cigarettes, in order to rely on them in the future. Main parameters of battery 18650:

  • voltage,
  • recoil current,
  • charge current,
  • capacity,
  • number of charge-discharge cycles,
  • safety of use,
  • availability of protection board,
  • life time.
  • Voltage refers to the electrical potential difference between the positive (“plus”) and negative (“minus”) electrodes of the 18650 battery. Voltage is measured in Volts (Volt) and is indicated by the letter “V” (V). The voltage changes during the discharge process. Distinguish:
  • maximum voltage. immediately after full charge,
  • minimal. below which the vape battery cannot be discharged,
  • nominal. in the middle of the discharge.
  • Electricity. it is the directed movement of charged particles in a conductor. Measured in Amperes or MilliAmperes. Recoil current. This is the maximum current of the 18650 battery without damaging or degrading the cell’s performance.
  • Charge current. maximum allowable when charging the 18650 battery.
  • Battery capacity 18650. characteristic that takes into account the discharge time at a given current. Capacity is measured in milliAmpere-hours (mAh), in foreign designation. milliAmperhour (mAh).
  • The number of charge-discharge cycles of an 18650 battery for a vape is determined until its capacity is reduced by no more than 10 percent.
  • Safety of use. characteristic that takes into account the possibility of battery fire when it is overcharged, overdischarged, overheated or damaged externally.
  • For safe use, a protection board is installed inside the 18650 batteries. When using unprotected vaping batteries, a protection board is provided in the powered device itself.
  • The service life of the 18650 battery shows how many years it can be used, provided that the characteristic of the number of charge-discharge cycles is not exceeded.
  • How to choose an 18650 battery for vape

    This review examines the procedure and criteria for choosing 18650 batteries for vape, electronic cigarette, electric screwdriver. In vaping, accumulators also received more abbreviated names: acb, rechargeable battery, battery. The article discusses the technical characteristics and consumer qualities of each type of battery in relation to the conditions of use.

    8650 Li-Ion battery: marking

    By marking the 18650 Li-Ion battery, you can determine the chemical type of the cathode. The marking consists of three letters:

    which, 18650, batteries, choose
    • The first letter I stands for lithium-ion technology (Li-Ion).
    • Second letter. this is the type of cathode.
    • The third letter R indicates that this is a rechargeable battery.
    Deciphering the marking of 18650 Li-Ion batteries

    DesignationChem. cathode composition
    IMR manganese oxide LiMnO2, LiMn2O4
    ICR cobalt oxide LiCoO2
    INR Nickel oxide Li (NiCoMn) O2 or Li (NiCoAl) O2
    IFR iron phosphate LiFePO4

    8650 batteries with and without protection

    For safe use, 18650 batteries can be produced with a protection board installed in the battery case. Unprotected batteries must be used in devices that contain a protective board inside them.

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    18650 battery with Robiton 3000 mAh protection.

    LiFePO4 18650 batteries are the safest, so they come without protection board.

    18650 battery without protection Robiton SON2100 30A (Sony US18650 VTC4).

    18650 vape battery: which one is better?

    Depending on the type of device and operating conditions, vape batteries are conventionally divided into 4 categories, based on the operating current delivered. Each gradation has its own best battery. Below are the top best vape batteries by category.

    • Current up to 10 A. For work in a vape with an electronic board in varivatt mode (adjustable power) up to 30 watts.

    Battery for electronic board LG INR 18650 MH1 3200mAh 10A.

    • Current up to 20 A. For mech mods and electronic cigarette boards in power mode up to 60 watts.

    Best vape battery LG HG2 18650 20A (chocolate bar).

    • Current up to 30 A. For mech mods and powerful boards up to 120 watts.

    Best battery for mechmod 18650 Sony VTC6 30A (green cucumber).

    • Current over 30 Amperes. For the most powerful e-cigarette and vaping competition.

    Powerful vape battery A123 SYSTEMS 55A (yellow banana) provides 55 Amps of recoil current.

    When you need to drill a hole in a dense material or screw a thick and long self-tapping screw, you have to use the tool at full power. In this case, active consumption of charge begins, and the ability to complete the process qualitatively without a drawdown of revolutions depends on the battery’s reaction to this phenomenon.

    In view of this, modern Li-Ion batteries are significantly inferior to earlier counterparts. The most powerful in this regard are NiCd and NiMh. When maximum energy output is required, then they are chosen.

    What batteries can be used for screwdrivers

    Power tool manufacturers always indicate in the characteristics of screwdrivers which batteries are recommended for working with them. The battery type is spelled out in several English letters. To know which battery to choose an electric screwdriver with, you need to understand the decoding of the abbreviation and know the advantages and disadvantages of each type of battery.

    Number of charge and discharge cycles

    All batteries have one drawback. sooner or later the energy in them runs out and the device must be put on charge. Depending on the type of battery, there is an average statistical limit on the number of charging cycles, after which the battery will no longer be able to store current and will have to be replaced.

    For screwdrivers with NiCd batteries, this figure is 1000 cycles, and the tool often continues to work after reaching this figure. This makes it a leader when compared in this characteristic.

    A common type of Li-Ion in screwdrivers is capable of being charged and discharged over 600 times. The advanced technology of the last century NiMh is significantly inferior to the previous ones and the battery will withstand only 300-500 cycles.

    The ability to charge quickly

    If there is a lot of work ahead, then one battery may not be enough, so the craftsmen use two batteries: while one is functioning in an electric screwdriver, the second is being charged. The performance of work depends on how quickly it happens.

    Nickel-cadmium and nickel-metal hydride batteries are charged within 4-8 hours, depending on capacity. The latter, although they quickly accumulate energy, need constant recharging during storage.

    The leaders in this category are lithium-ion batteries, which can be fully charged within 30 minutes to 2 hours, depending on capacity. Thanks to this, the battery installed on the electric screwdriver will not have time to discharge, and the second one, located at the charging station, will already be ready for use.

    Dimensions (edit)

    Screwdriver batteries are fixed to the tool handle. The size of the batteries determines the weight of the electric screwdriver and the convenience of holding it. This is especially important for long-term manipulations and overhead work (fastening beams to the ceiling, drywall sheets, fixing panels in hard-to-reach places). The heaviest and largest are NiMh and NiCd.

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    Li-Ion is produced more compact. Often they are made as a clip that takes up only the space in the handle of an electric screwdriver, without an extended outer part.

    What characteristics are important when choosing a battery for an electric screwdriver

    Considering the advantages and disadvantages of different types of batteries, you can choose the one suitable for specific operating conditions. Now let’s look at two key characteristics that all types of batteries have that affect the choice of an electric screwdriver.

    plus and 5 cons of alterations for an electric screwdriver

    • The energy density of the elements will be better than that of nickel-cadmium. This means that the electric screwdriver will retain its original weight, even be somewhat lighter, while the output voltage remains within the normal range.
    • Lithium batteries charge much faster than others. It only takes one hour to charge them safely.
    • Lithium-ion batteries have no memory effect. From this we can conclude that there is no need to completely discharge them before installing them on the charger.
    • If you install a lithium battery, you will have to carefully monitor it: when charging. above 4.2 Volts, it cannot be charged and discharged by less than 2.7 Volts. Otherwise, the battery will simply fail.
    • 18650 cans are used as lithium cells. They differ in size from nickel-cadmium. In addition, you will have to find a place for the charge controller of the discharge of the wires. And all this should somehow fit into the screwdriver body.
    • A charger for cadmium batteries may not be suitable for rework. You may have to additionally look for a universal charger.
    • You won’t be able to work outdoors in winter, since the lithium battery does not tolerate negative temperatures well.
    • A lithium-ion battery costs more than a cadmium battery.
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    How to avoid 4 mistakes when assembling 18650 charging

    To properly connect lithium cells to the battery, you will need to follow the instructions exactly:

      We disassemble the battery case. The 14.4 Volt model contains 12 1.2 Volt nickel cadmium batteries. We immediately get rid of this coupling. we bite off with pliers. As a result, you will get only a connector with “plus” and “minus”.


  • We also get rid of the thermal sensor. Instead, we use a controller with a thermocouple, which will disconnect the battery if it overheats.
  • All elements are connected in series. We will solder the controller to the assembly. We connect the balancing points to a special connector on the microcircuit.
  • When the battery is assembled, we solder the terminals to “minus” and “plus”. We put everything in the case.
  • Answers:

    • b) It is advisable to take Chinese KEEPPOWER batteries. Samsung does not release models with protection.
    • a) The correct output readings are 5 Volts and a current from 0.5 to 1 of the nominal capacity of the battery itself.
    • a) 10. 25 are ideal indicators. Do not place the battery in any other environment.
    • a) Two stages. first with a voltage of 0.2-1A, and then with a high constant.
    • a) Only one. A high voltage is immediately applied to the element. The rest of the stages are missing.

    The problem with a nickel-cadmium battery installed in an electric screwdriver is that it needs to be used constantly. If the battery is completely discharged or is not used for a long time, then the crystallization process will begin in it, and the battery will soon fail altogether.

    It costs a lot of money to replace the battery as batteries that fit an electric screwdriver are not cheap.

    For these reasons, the owners of screwdrivers slightly alter the battery in order to connect lithium cells to it. But before starting to carry out such work, you need to think about whether it is necessary to make such an alteration and whether it is advisable at all.

    Definition: An 18650 battery is a 3.7V battery.

    What are the best 18650 batteries for a flashlight, electric screwdriver

    Review of 18650 batteries for different devices, converting a battery to an electric screwdriver, the best batteries with Aliexpress

    • When purchasing 18650 batteries for flashlight with protection, which manufacturer is preferable?
    • What indicators should chargers give for 18650?

    a) The output is 5 volts and the current is from 0.5 to 1 of the nominal capacity of the battery itself. b) The output is 10 Volts and the current is from 1 to 3 of the nominal capacity of the battery itself.

    • In what temperature range is it desirable to store the battery?

    a) 10. 25 are ideal indicators. The battery cannot tolerate extremely cold or hot environments. b) At a temperature of 20. 45 degrees.

    • How many stages does a lithium battery go through??

    Chargers for 18650 batteries

    The 18650 battery will have to use the correct charger. At the output, it will give out 5 volts and a current from 0.5 to 1 of the nominal capacity of the battery itself. If the lithium cells support 2600 mAh, then a current of 1.3-2.6 amperes should be used to charge it.

    The lithium battery charger charges the battery in several stages:

    • First, a voltage of 0.2-1A is applied to the battery.
    • Further, charging already takes place at a constant voltage.

    If the charger has a pulse mode, it will significantly speed up the charging time.

    Comparing 18650 cells for DIY battery. Q&A#5

    In the event that the battery contains graphite, then the voltage should not exceed 4.3 Volts per cell. If this figure is exceeded, then the energy density will increase, and the oxidative process will go.

    There are lithium batteries that take less than an hour to charge. The second stage is not provided for them. the current is immediately supplied to 80% and after that it is put into operation. It is normal for a lithium type battery.

    Where 18650 batteries are used?

    18650 batteries are widely used in domestic environments. Most often they are used in conventional LED flashlights, since the battery allows it to work for a long time without the need for recharging.

    How to properly charge a lithium polymer battery on a smartphone?

    • Li Pol batteries are charged in two phases (CC-CV method).
    • It is not recommended to allow the power source to be completely discharged, before recharging it should remain about 10-20%, otherwise it will quickly fail.
    • It is important to ensure that the voltage does not fall below 3 volts on each bank.

    Which 18650 Battery to Choose for a Flashlight?

    Li-ion batteries 18650, 16340 (CR123A), 14500 for flashlight is undoubtedly better.

    Will China’s 18650 Battery Beat LG, Samsung, Sony & Panasonic? Let’s find out!

    What should be the internal resistance of the battery?

    There are no absolutely exact reference numbers, but for most serviceable and unworn batteries used in passenger cars, the internal resistance should not exceed 4-6 mΩ. Well, 96% SOH (State Of Health numbers) or “battery health” means a comprehensive indicator of its health.

    What should be the resistance of the 18650 battery?

    The initial voltage on the battery is 3.80 Volts, the internal resistance is 42.2 mOhm. Internal resistance after testing is 42.2 mΩ. It should be noted that the maximum voltage of this battery model is 4.35 Volts, which is higher than the standard 4.2 Volts.

    What are the best 18650 batteries??

    Category Place Name
    The best standard 18650 batteries one Panasonic NCR18650B
    2 Samsung ICR18650-22F
    Best high current 18650 batteries one LG HG2
    2 Sony US18650VTC6

    Where are batteries used?

    The battery is used in various industries and has a wide range of applications. Rechargeable batteries are used for lighting carriages, power supply of various apertures on cars, in mobile phones, in household appliances and electronics.