Car charger not providing enough power? (Battery Drain while plugged in)

Discussion in 'Droid RAZR Support' started by KayIslandDrunk, May 1, 2012.

  1. KayIslandDrunk

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    Was hoping someone could help me out here. I've noticed that if I'm using Google Music and/or Google Maps Navigation my battery continues to drain even if it's plugged in. It's rather frustrating because I like to listen to music and I also like to keep my eye on traffic during my commute home. It's even more frustrating that it drains even if it's just music!

    I had a 1A charger that I used with my old Droid Incredible for years without any issue. I thought that maybe with the 4G I needed some more output so I went out and purchased a 2.1A car charger. It doesn't seem to make any difference at all. I'm still seeing the same battery drain rate.

    I thought maybe it was thinking the chargers were usb (as a 500mA charge would definitely be insufficient) but as far as I can tell it believes it's plugged into a wall charger.

    Does anyone have any ideas? This is extremely frustrating!
     
  2. FoxKat

    FoxKat Premium Member
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    First, using a 2.1A charger on your phone will not charge the phone any faster than the current limiting circuitry in the charger system built into the phone will allow. These phones are designed to be charged at a specific rate for many reasons but not the least of which is to extend the life of the battery (considering it's not user-replaceable). Also, charging these batteries too fast can result in increased heat and irreparable damage, another reason why the current is limited.

    If your phone is depleting rather than increasing in charge while using it in the car, it could be simply that the various tools and features you are using at the same time are consuming more than the current limiting circuitry will allow the phone to receive from the charger.

    First, do you NEED 4G while driving? 4G is a known power hog and will drain your battery in a relatively short period of time - even if not communicating in 4g, but just on. Even with Google Music or Google Navigation 3G is sufficient for the speeds of data these two features require. Change your system settings from CDMA & LTE to CDMA Only and you will cut back dramatically on power consumption.

    Second, do you run the phone in the car with the display at 100%? Again talking about power hogs, the display is arguably the biggest power hog - especially with bright backgrounds. You can reduce display power consumption dramatically by setting your display brightness to "automatic", or even lower if you can still see it, and setting your wallpaper to a darker image (Black is best), thereby using less power to produce light.

    Third, do you leave the display on 100% of the time while using the phone in the car? I understand the need to know where you are going and if you are using Navigation it makes sense that you'll need to see the map at times, but if you set the screen to timeout to 30 seconds, when you approach a turn the navigation will "wake" the unit, the display will turn on, and it will give you audible directions for that upcoming turn. If you are leaving it on simply so you can see the "album cover" or CD Case artwork for the artists you are listening to, you are wasting power and you should probably keep your eyes on the road for the most part anyway. Again, set it to timeout in 30 seconds. Also, if "music" is code for "video" then there's another issue altogether and I think you know what I mean there.

    Fourth, keeping your "eye on traffic" means you aren't just using the GPS and Google navigation features, but also extra data communication to obtain traffic statistics, which of course if you are on 4G will do so at the highest power consumption rate. For solutions to this, see "First", "Second", and "Third".

    Fifth, are you also doing "other" things with the phone while driving??? Again, keeping your hands off the phone and on the wheel, and your eyes on the road is probably a good bit of advice for self-preservation among other, less-selfish reasons.

    I use my phone on every commute, I stream FLAC audio from the home computer AND use the Google navigation while driving, not to mention a phone call or two at times. I am using the Motorola Rapid Charger Accessory Adapter (which supplies less than 1 Amp if I'm not mistaken), and my phone doesn't deplete while driving - in fact it gains about 20% of capacity during the 30 minute commute I have daily each way.

    If you approach the power consumption intelligently and conservatively you will not be disappointed. If however you use every available feature and resource all at the same time, be prepared for huge battery consumption and for a charger to be unable to keep pace with the consumption rate.

    YRMV.
     
  3. KayIslandDrunk

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    I do leave 4G on simply because 3G has a tendency to cause a lot of buffering in my area.

    As for GPS, my screen is on 100% of the time. Not because I don't know where I'm going but so that I can keep an eye on traffic. Granted I don't live in a major metro area where traffic is a nightmare but a change from yellow to red usually means my commute goes from 30 minutes to an hour and a half.

    My phone battery is at 100% when I connect to the car and usually when I get to work I'm down to 60-70%. Using the charger just means it only drains to 80-90%.

    This morning was even more frustrating. I had iheartradio playing, no GPS, screen at 10%, and it still drained like crazy.

    Yet I get to work, plug it into the wall, stream music to Bluetooth while keeping the screen at 100% and it charges like a dream.

    I don't think its my new char charger as I tested it with my galaxy tab and I was able to watch a movie with the screen at 100% and it still charged fine.

    Its so confusing.
     
  4. 94lt1

    94lt1 Super Moderator
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    Being a gear head here, I have to ask... what kind if car do you drive? Is the belt tight? It could be a serpentine or a v belt depending on the make and model. But a slightly loose belt on the alternator, or high load on the alternator, a bad connection in the power outlet where the charger us plugged in...... a short somewhere in the electrical system..... and the fact that its doing this with two separate chargers.... makes me wonder...

    Are you idling alot during the drive?? If so I'm sure the fans are kicked on for the radiator.... lots of factors here.... sorry FoxKat, just thought this might not be a phone issue...:)

    DROID RAZR MAXXAMIZED!!!

    EDIT: just saw.... the new charger works fine on your galaxy tab.. 7 inch display??? Is your tab a 3g tab, or a Wi-Fi only?? Or the new version???
     
  5. FoxKat

    FoxKat Premium Member
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    Agent 94, no need to apologize to me, but you may have to explain yourself to agent 99.

    Also, reviewing this thread once again cause me to think of another possibility or two. It could be that the charger he's using is causing the problem since it's putting out voltages and amperages that are outside the specified ranges. furthermore, this maybe just 1 more example of how confused the meter gets with charging a battery while the phone is on and it may in fact not be reducing its charge level but simply skewing the reported results.

    The OP may benefit from simply going through a charge discharge and charge cycle again with power off to 100 percent as we're all too familiar with now as a result of all the posts I've made. 94, do you wish to explain?





    Sent from my DROID RAZR using Tapatalk with speech to text translation. Please excuse any minor grammatical/punctuation/spelling errors.
     
  6. KayIslandDrunk

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    7.0 plus tab wifi. Streaming a movie while tethered it works fine.
     
  7. KayIslandDrunk

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    Voltmeter reads output at ~ 5V.
     
  8. 94lt1

    94lt1 Super Moderator
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    5v at the charger, or at the port you have the charger plugged into?? The port from your vehicle should be 12 volts. If the port is receiving less than that... this could be your problem.

    Be aware that the difference in your tab and your razr is substantial as far as power usage. The tab has a much bigger battery and only running off of Wi-Fi. Your razr has two radios, also Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, the 4g radios and 3 g radios running at the same time is why the current generation of 4g devices lack longevity in the battery department.

    NOW TRY THE FOXKAT REMEDY. Power your device off, charge to 100%, power it on and use it until you reach 15%..... repeat. This made dramatic improvements with both of my razr maxx's. On a maxx, repeat this every 3-4 months, on a razr i believe its 2-3 months.

    Also, for the sake of heat, this battery hates heat, and so will you if you let it get too hot.
    Charge your phone periodically throughout the day, rather than constantly discharging it down to 30%.... the reason is that charging creates heat, the bigger the charge, the more heat there is involved. Hope this makes sense and helps???

    Did I leave anything out?

    DROID RAZR MAXXAMIZED!!!

    Oh and never kill this battery. Turn your device off instead of letting the battery completely die.
     
  9. FoxKat

    FoxKat Premium Member
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    CONTROL would be proud! :biggrin:
     
  10. KayIslandDrunk

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    5V at the charger.

    I'll have to try the discharge to 15 and recharge method.

    Right now i rarely ever allow my phone to go below 80%. Maybe I'm still traumatized from the horrible battery of the incredible but anytime I see that drop below 60% I start to freak out and turn off everything except for the cell radio.
     
  11. lovemyram4x4

    lovemyram4x4 Member

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    Does you phone get warm/hot while in the car? I have problems with mine also not charging while in the car most of the time as well & it's due to heat. If I turn off data it's fine, 3g still generates too much heat with BT & GPS on.

    I actually stopped by the Verizon store last night to complain about it, they think my radio is faulty causing it to run warmer than it should so they sending me a new Razr. I hope the replacement works but I'm not sure I have faith that it will be much better after reading about someone who is on their 3rd one & all had overheating issues. They also thought they were out of white Razrs so they wanted me to just take a black one & buy a white case. No thanks, if I didn't want the white Razr I would just got the Max's, I also never really like white phone in the past as they were too white, but on the Razr I think the thin white lines look nice & make the Kevlar cover pop.
     
  12. boddah

    boddah Member

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    With my Droid 1, 2, and 4, it was the exposure to direct sunlight that shut the charging off due to excessive heat, I compensated by moving it a bit and blowing cold air via the defrost vents over it
     
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