How to recharge a cordless drill battery

Updated February 21, 2017

Cordless power tools have revolutionised the way homeowners and professionals work with power tools. The first cordless drill was introduced in the 1960s. Since that time, they have become more powerful, and the batteries last much longer. If a downside to cordless drills exists, it is managing battery power and recharging to prevent interruptions during the project. Make it a point to know the battery type and its characteristics being used with the drill. Doing so helps improve battery management and will ultimately extend its life.

Plug the battery charger directly into the outlet. Avoid using extension cords to reduce the effects of voltage drop. Cordless drill battery chargers use transformers and solid-state components for charging batteries. Supplying less than adequate voltage to the charger has the potential to cause overheating and damage to the charger and battery.

Remove the battery from the drill and wipe any debris from the exposed terminals before inserting it in the charger. Line up the battery with the charger and slide it in all the way. A red or green power light will come on when the battery is in the charger. Different cordless tool manufacturers build chargers specifically for their batteries. For this reason, most batteries will only fit into chargers provided by the same company.

Charge cordless drill batteries when temperatures are between freezing and 37.8 degrees Celsius. Keep the charger clean and the vents free of debris. Allow the battery to stay on charge until the charger indicator shows the charge to be complete. Because different tool manufactures use a different sequence of coloured indicator lights on their chargers, check the tools operating manual for the meaning of each light. Today's chargers often have a legend stuck to the charger showing what each light means and how to tell when the charge is complete.


Store unused batteries in a dry location away from extreme temperatures to retain the charge capacity.


Do not mix and match batteries and chargers. The wrong combination will create a fire hazard and can cause damage to the battery and charger. Never allow a battery charger to become wet. Protect the battery charger cord from damage and keep it away from pets and children. Never disassemble a rechargeable battery or battery charger.

Things You'll Need

  • Cordless battery charger
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About the Author

Damon Hildebrand is a retired U.S. Navy veteran. He has more than 15 years within the oil and gas industry in both technical and managerial positions. Hildebrand has been a technical writer and communicator for the last four years. He is a certified specialists in lubrication and tribology, as well as a certified maintenance and reliability professional.