polarity and chargers


Would having the receptacle wired "backwards" cause a problem with battery chargers for cordless tools, etc.?
Both my Milwaukee batteries seem to have become basically unusable due to their charges lasting a very short time, and I just found out that the outlet I've been using has the wires reversed.
Have to check the one I've been using for the camera as well, since that has dies an timely death as well.
And, if anyone has readily accessible any sites for getting new batteries, I'd appreciate if you'd share (yes, I'm going to do a google as well).
Thanx Renata
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Outlet as in AC? No problem. Plug as in DC, big problem.
The big slot on the AC has to do with breaking the hot rather than the neutral with a switch.
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No, Nor would unpluging and turning over the male end and repluging, which would have the same effect.
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Renata wrote:

polarity should not affect electronic equipment. how long have you had those batteries?
--
Thank you,



"Then said I, Wisdom [is] better than strength: nevertheless the poor
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I thought that was a trick question- to see if we were awake. With 120 polarity reversals/second on the line. :-)
Companies like Batteries Plus can replace the cells, sometimes with new ones of higher a-h rating for _much_ less than buying new. E.g. 14.4v P-C pack, 2.1 a-h vice 1.7 (or 1.5) orig, for $35, vice $64 for new. Connections are spot-welded, pack gets extended test.
No affiliation with Co.
J
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I really like my Milwaukee 18v tools. However, in my experience, the batteries last 14-20 months max. I date them and save the receipts. If they fail in less than 12 months, I return them for warranty replacement.
A/C polarity does not affect their life.
Dave
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"Renata" wrote

[SNIP]
Wiring a 110 volt receptacle "backwards" means that the neutral and hot wires were swapped, and if you're depending on the neutral being neutral (where it's connected to a metal case for example), a "backward" wired outlet will have the hot wire connected to the case ... and it becomes a shock hazard. Your charger doesn't connect anything to any exposed metal (except plastic) so you shouldn't have any issues with that.
With regard to your batteries ... I am assuming your charger shows charge complete, and that you get a very short run time from them (as compared to a new battery). It is a pretty good guess that either one or more cells in the battery pack have shorted, or have been charge/discharge cycled sufficiently to dry out the electrolyte. In either case the batteries (or just the cell pack inside) need replaced. I'm also assuming you have more than one charger???? Could be a charger problem; easy to borrow another charger and see if you get a better charge on your battery with the different charger.
Now ... if you had told me your battery wouldn't accept a charge ... that's a whole 'nother thing. THAT is an easy fix ... you jumper two batteries (your bad one and a freshly charged one) positive to positive, negative to negative for about 1 minute, then pop the "bad" one back into the charger. If it doesn't accept a charge, jump it again ... but for two minutes. Once it takes a charge you're in good shape ... just remember to charge the "booster" battery when you're done as well. This is caused by leaving the battery on a tool and leaving the tool on (happens with regularity with one of our 18-volt drills being dumped into the big red bag and the switch getting shoved despite the trigger lock mechanism. You discharge the battery below the level that the charger registers as "battery present - start charge cycle" ... and by jumping the battery with a fully charged one, you put enough current through to raise the voltage above the "start charge cycle" level.
Hope this helps,
Rick
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That would be a safety issue (to you) in that any fuse in the charger should be on the hot lead and it should be carefully layed-out so that it cannot contact anything that might make the voltage present on a user-touchable surface. As for the battery charging circuitry, it should be OK because the AC comes into (usually after a step-down transformer) a full-wave bridge rectifier which changes the voltage to something approximating DC (it has ripple at this point which they filter out (smooth) with a capacitor). The rectifier doesn't care as to which AC lead is connected to which side, it'll work the same either way.

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Thanx for the responses.
I didn't really think polarity was related to my batteries suddenly losing potency, but it was a recent discovery in my "new" house and I know a few things are sensitive to polarity, so I threw out the question onto the wRECk..
The batteries are probably past their prime, in spite of not a whole lot of use. They're the 18v Milwaukee, NiMh I believe, and probably about 3 years old.
Thanx Renata
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3 years is the average.
Keep in mind also that larger voltage batteries have more cells packed inside the battery case and heat is an enemy to these cells. Because there are many more cells in an 18 volt battery vs. a 9.6 or 12 volt battery you have more cells insulating the inner cells during heavy use and recharging. It is an inherent fact that the more cells a battery has and the way they are packaged in the battery pack the shorter life span they will have when compared to the lesser voltage ones. Basically, what you gain in longer run times and power you loose in life expectancy with all things being equal.
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