Long-term Storage: Maximize Battery Life of USB-C Devices

These steps are ideal at the end of the school year and then justprior to a new school year in order to protect the lifespan of your USB-C devices’ batteries.

STEPS—Before long-term storage

  • Fully charge the devices.
  • Disconnect devices from all charging sources (unplug from cart).
  • Power down and/or unplug the cart(s) via primary power cord.
  • Store devices in a cool, dry location—in or out of the cart(s).

The batteries will normally discharge slightly during long periods (2-3 months) of inactivity and once ready to be used again, any remaining partial charge in batteries should be fully depleted then fully recharged for maximum operational run time.

STEPS—To redeploy devices and carts/stations

  • Open and power-up each device.
  • If each USB-C device powers up, use as normal and return to charging cart as needed.
  • If a device does NOT power up, connect it to its factory-supplied AC adapter for at least 10-15 minutes
    to initialize the charging/power process.
  • Once devices have been properly initialized, the cart can be plugged in and powered on; at that point
    devices can be connected inside.
  • The system should then be used normally until long-term storage needs to be repeated.

Long-term ChromeBook Storage: Best Practices

EarthWalk values our customers, and we would like to share with you the Google-recommended best practices for storing Chromebooks for extended periods of time as well as preparation for these devices prior to the new school year.

STEPS—Before long-term storage

Typically Chromebooks are in stand-by mode, when the screen eventually turns off, but the device still uses a bit of power. What you want to do is shut down each Chromebook, so there is no trickle of power needed and the battery’s current lasts longer for extended periods of time—like summer break. More detailed description as follows:

Charge the Chromebooks so the batteries are at least 80% full. One by one:

  • Connect device to a charger and turn it on.
  • Hold Refresh and Power buttons at the same time:
  • While still holding these keys, remove the power cable from the device and then release
    the keys. The device should shut down and remain off.
  • To confirm battery disconnect, press the power button. The Chromebook should not power on
    despite having a battery charge. It won’t power on by touching the power button or opening the lid
    until you plug the device back into a power source.
  • Store in a cool, dry location.

NOTE: If you can’t put your model of Chromebook into the battery disconnect state described above, charge the battery to at least 80%. Then turn off the device, unplug it from a power source, and store it in a cool, dry place.

STEPS—To redeploy the devices

About a week before classes resume, follow these steps to prepare for use:

  • Connect the Chromebooks to the factory-supplied AC adapters and connect to a power source.
    This is needed to get them out of the battery disconnect state.
  • Power up your devices.
  • Connect your Chromebooks to WiFi and update them to the latest Chrome OS release. This could take
    some time if there have been multiple versions released swince the last time devices were updated.

Long-term (Summer) Storage of Sidekick PowerPack Batteries

The best course of action concerning long-term storage or non-use of SideKick PowerPack batteries (i.e., summer school break) is to leave them plugged in and charging. Once the SideKick batteries are charged, very little power is consumed while they are on “trickle charge”—meaning the batteries cannot be over-charged. If it’s not possible to leave the mobile labs or eChargers plugged in, the batteries should be fully charged before being unplugged. At this point they should last between 3-5 weeks before they will need to be recharged again.

NOTE: If the voltage of the batteries drops below a certain point, the internal charging boards will not have enough power to initiate the charging process. In this case, the batteries would need to be returned to EarthWalk to be “jump started.”

Powering Up SideKick PowerPacks 
When SideKick PowerPacks do get unplugged for a few days (for example, the room is to be cleaned or painted), you need to make certain that the switch on the back of the mobile lab cart or the eCharger is in the “OFF” position, then plug in the mobile lab cart or eCharger, and then set the switch to the “ON” position.

Any further questions related to your deployment can be directed to EarthWalk’s technical support:

CALL | 888.213.4900 (ask for tech support)

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