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Breaking in Your Power Tool Batteries (Dewalt, Ryobi, Ridgid, and More)

Breaking in Your Power Tool Batteries (Dewalt, Ryobi, Ridgid, and More)

Ever since power tools came onto the scene, they have been widely used. From small home repairs to gardening aid, to construction on massive buildings, power tools are relied upon to do the job quickly and with precision. Knowing how to care for the tools in your care is an important part of owning them, as they can be expensive to replace, and you want them to last for as long as possible.

One important part of power tool maintenance is taking care of the batteries. Before you even worry about everyday care for your power tools, it is important to know how to break the batteries in. If they are broken in properly, they will have a good start and you will be taking the right steps to ensure they last as long as possible. If you use Dewalt, Ryobi, or Rigid batteries, we have the answer on how to break them in. Read on to find out more.

How Do I Break in Power Tool Batteries?

Whether you are using a Dewalt, Ryobi, Rigid, or just about any power tool, the battery will be lithium-ion. Breaking in a lithium-ion battery involves charging it completely before you ever use it in your tools. There are three things to remember about charging.

  1. Always place both the battery and the charger in an area that is room temperature. If your battery gets too hot or too cold, it can affect how long it lasts or even damage it.
  2. Completely charge the battery before you use it for the first time. The length of time it takes for a full charge can be anywhere from under an hour to 8 hours, depending on the brand.
  3. Do not overcharge your battery. This can damage the battery. If you need to, set a reminder to check on the battery at regular intervals to see how much it has charged.  

How Do I Charge a Dewalt Battery?
If you have a Dewalt battery as soon as it has arrived place it in a room temperature area for a couple of hours. Once you are sure the battery is at room temperature do the following:

  • Plug the charger into a standard socket, then place the battery into it. It will only fit in when it has been put into the charger in the right direction. If fits you are good to go.
  • Turn on the charger. The LED light will flash red when it is charging. Once the LED is steady, the battery is charged.

For a Dewalt battery, it is also important that all the cells are equalized before use. You can do this by putting the battery into the charger and turning the charger on. As soon as the LED light flashes press the button labeled “tune-up.” The light will turn off briefly, then flash quickly three times, then go back to the same rate of flashing as before. This means that is tuning properly. It typically takes about 8 hours to completely tune a Dewalt battery.

How Do I Charge a Ryobi Battery?

To charge your Ryobi battery for the first time take the following steps:

  • Find an outlet in place that is room temperature (anywhere from 50-100 degrees). Plug the battery charger into the outlet.
  • Next, insert the battery into the charger, making sure it is securely in the charger with the contacts on the battery and the charger are facing each other. Press the battery down so that the contacts touch each other.
  • The battery should start charging at this point, which will be indicated by a flashing green LED light and a steady red LED light. If the green light turns steady, it means that the battery is fully charged and is ready to be used.

How Do I Charge a Ridgid Battery?

The most important thing to remember about charging a Ridgid battery is that it will take several cycles in the charger for it to be fully charged. With that in mind, you can start the process by doing the following:

  • Plug the charger into a standard outlet at room temperature.
  • Insert the battery into the charger. You will know it has been put in correctly if the raised ribs on the battery are inserted into the grooves of the charger.
  • The battery will become warm. This is an indication that the battery is charging and does not mean there is anything wrong with the battery.

The charging typically lasts anywhere between 18 minutes to 34 minutes. 


Power tools are a great way to get everything from everyday household chores to big constructions projects done and done well. However, to make sure that your power tools, no matter the brand, are long-lasting, it is important to take care of their batteries. To give your batteries a good start you want to break them in by charging them fully before putting them in your tools.

While the specifics on how to charge the batteries differ a bit depending on the brand, there are two important things to remember about lithium-ion batteries. First of all, make sure to charge them in a place that is room temperature (between 50-100) degrees. Second, do not overcharge them as that can damage the battery. Be aware of how much time has elapsed and set reminders to check how much the battery has charged, if needed.