By using a charger that is too powerful for the device you are charging, it can expose weaknesses in the battery and cause it damage, leading to a shortened life span of the item or in more extreme cases, the battery could fail and pose a fire hazard. For example, e-cigarette batteries generally run on a lower amperage to mobile phone chargers. There have been many cases of fires caused by using the incorrect charger for these items. Nationally there has been a rise in fires involving e-cigarettes in domestic properties since 2012, with the direct cause being due to failure of battery packs during charging.
A spokesperson from Electrical Safety First has commented 'Always follow manufacturers' instructions and use the charger that is supplied, or designed to be used, with the device. If a charger with a different amperage is used, this could lead to an incorrect charge being supplied resulting in damage to the battery. A damaged battery is at risk of catching fire or exploding. Lithium batteries, which are common in products like e-cigarettes and mobile devices, are very sensitive and need to be charged carefully.'
E-cigarette users are advised to follow these safety tips when charging:
- always use the correct charger and follow the manufacturer's instructions. Mobile phone chargers are generally too powerful for charging e-cigarettes
- never charge a battery that has signs of damage, that has been dropped, or has been subjected to impact
- never plug a charger into a non-approved mains power transformer
- check that your e-cigarette battery has overcharge or overheat protection
- remove the battery from charge when complete, don't overcharge
- never leave a battery on charge unattended
- don't use if wet or exposed to water
- do not over tighten the atomiser or when connecting to the charger
- ensure that you dispose of batteries correctly
In in doubt, check with the retailer or manufacturer of the product for advice on choosing the correct charger. If you require any further assistance please contact
Trading Standards on 01534 448160.