There have been recent reports made all across the world (including Australia) of fires that have occurred as a result of charging electric scooters in medium-rise apartments. The main cause of these fires is due to the lithium-ion batteries specifically used to not only charge scooters but also a variety of household items including laptops, mobile phones and other devices that need to be recharged.
This latest Think Property & Co blog highlights things to be aware of when charging your electric scooter at home.
Use certified-quality batteries
If you’re buying your batteries from websites like eBay or AliExpress, you’re greatly increasing the risk of a fire. The fact is – if you buy cheap batteries, it’s likely they’re being made with sub-quality components that may not meet safety standards. It is absolutely crucial to make sure that your scooter’s lithium-ion battery has been thoroughly tested and meets safety standards.
Keep your devices clean and your batteries intact
Make sure that your scooter is clean inside and out. Any build-up of dirt or dust can greatly increase the risk of a fire. Just like dryer units in your laundry – if there’s too much dry material where it shouldn’t be, it becomes a hazard. It’s also important to handle your batteries carefully to avoid a puncture and any other potential damage, and inspect your batteries regularly before and between use.
Avoid extreme temperatures and find a suitable location to charge
The safe operating temperature of a lithium-ion battery is between 20 and 60 degrees Celsius. Going outside of this range could result in not just a decrease in device performance but also the risk of a battery failing or combusting. Try to find a safe space to charge your device away from heat sources, like heating ducts or curtains. Try to store your lithium-ion batteries in a cool, dry place and double-check the manufacturer’s temperature recommendation. It’s also important to keep these batteries away from metal objects like keys coins and jewellery. This is because metal conducts electricity and if any of these items come into contact, a short circuit could occur, which can lead to a fire.
Don’t overcharge your devices
Leaving your scooter plugged in and charging for long amounts of time. Only charge if the battery levels are low and unplug once it’s reached maximum capacity. Luckily, most scooters have a battery management system that will stop the charging process automatically, however it is important to keep an eye on your devices regardless.
Batteries cannot and should not be disposed of in general waste or even recycling. Make sure to keep your used batteries and dispose of them at various locations that you can find here.