Got a Chilled Phone? Here’s Your Guide to Reviving It!

(Last Updated On: November 18, 2023)

Leaving your smartphone in a cold car might seem harmless, but it can lead to problems, especially if the temperature dips below freezing. This can cause your phone’s battery to drain rapidly – potentially from full to dead in minutes. Moreover, immediately recharging a cold phone isn’t advisable; the extreme cold affects the battery’s ability to recharge.

Here are some key tips to handle a cold phone:

  1. Avoid Charging a Cold Phone: If your phone is cold and not working, resist the urge to charge it. The battery won’t charge properly until it warms up.
  2. Beware of Condensation: If your phone is in a humid environment, condensation could form inside, posing a risk of water damage. Let the phone dry thoroughly before turning it on, especially if it was dropped in the snow.
  3. Warm Up the Phone Gradually: Bring the phone back to room temperature by placing it in a warmer environment. Avoid rapid heating methods like ovens or direct contact with heat sources, as this can damage the phone.
  4. Power On After Warming and Drying: Once the phone is back at room temperature and dry, you can turn it on. The battery level might still be high, and you can charge it as usual if needed.

The science behind why cold affects lithium-ion batteries (used in smartphones, laptops, and other devices) isn’t fully understood, but it’s known that cold temperatures slow down the chemical reactions necessary for battery operation. In the cold, lithium ions move sluggishly, leading to rapid battery drain. Once the battery warms up, it can function normally again.

Remember to keep your phone warm in cold conditions. For cold weather, you might also consider touchscreen gloves to keep your hands warm while using your device.

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