The past few years have seen an increase in a number of smartphones exploding and unexpectedly catching fire. Some such cases just to mention a few include the Dubai incident where a Samsung smartphone owner reported their phone exploding, the incidents in Switzerland and Abu Dhabi where smartphone owners reported their phones catching fire and most recently the incident in Hong Kong where a Samsung Galaxy S4 smartphone user reported his phone catching fire and subsequently burning down his whole apartment.
While similar stories continue to mount globally and Samsung vigorously persist in their investigations this article takes a quick look in to the reasons why phone batteries may flame or explode and offers insightful tips on to how to avoid such an incident occurring with your mobile phone device.
To begin with, it is important for Smartphone users to keep in mind that the chances of any electronic device exploding or catching fire, be it a smartphone, clock radio or tablet are very slim and typically only occur in events where there are serious flaws in product assembly or in the even more unlikely scenario that there is a product design flaw. As a matter of fact, even in the unusual incidents where phones do explode or unexpectedly flame up, it is often not a product assembly or product design issue that causes the event but rather a combination of factors that cumulate (for instance the use of unoriginal product support devices or accessories) to triggering the incident.
Mobile phone batteries which are commonly made from lithium typically suffer from a little problem referred to as thermal runaway whereby extra heat generates even more surplus heat and so on. It is such reactions that sometimes lead to incidents like those discussed above particularly in case where batteries are not well equipped with systems that prevent the perilous reactions of chemicals enclosed within and systems that offers protection against overcharging.
It is a widely believed misconception that even inexpensive batteries manufactured by unknown companies are just as reliable as those produced by original leading market brands. However this is not true. As mobile phone batteries progressively become thinner to accommodate the ever changing slim design needs of smartphones, the space in the battery available to keep the negative and positive plate’s apart similarly simultaneously decreases. What this means is that, if batteries are not made up to standard and something happens to come between the two plates which are typically separated by an increasingly thin separator, then chances of battery explosions or flame ups basically increase when such batteries are put under high levels of stress via overcharging.
Manufactures that follow all the right guidelines and procedures in their battery production process generally produce safe long lasting products; however some manufactures opt to cut corners with the aim of cutting costs, undercutting completion and making higher profits – an action that obviously leads to dangerous outcomes.
The best way to avoid unexpected incidents of battery combustion is by:
1. Always going for original manufacturer battery brands and phone accessories or in case where unavailable, well know replacement brands
2. Not leaving your Android device in a hot place particularly when it is charging since doing so only contributes to making overheating issues worse; and
3. Ensuring you charge and use your device in a well-ventilated area if using while it charges.