Hoverboards have become a popular mode of transportation and entertainment. However, one common issue that hoverboard owners encounter is when their hoverboard battery fails to retain a charge. If you’re facing this problem, don’t worry! In this article, we’ll walk you through the steps to diagnose and fix the issue. Whether it’s a faulty battery or a problematic charger, we’ve got you covered. So let’s dive in and find out why your hoverboard won’t charge.
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Anatomy of a Hoverboard Charging System
To troubleshoot why your hoverboard won’t charge, it helps to first understand the key components that allow it to charge:
- Battery – The rechargeable lithium-ion battery stores electricity to power the hoverboard. It typically provides 1-2 hours of ride time when fully charged.
- Charger – The detachable charger connects to A/C power and converts it to the proper DC voltage to charge the battery. It attaches via the charge port.
- Charge Port – The port on the hoverboard where the charger plugs into to deliver electricity to the battery. May have an internal fuse.
- Battery Management System – An integrated circuit that monitors and controls battery charging to protect the cells from damage.
- LED Indicators – Lights on the hoverboard that displays remaining battery power and charging status.
If any of these components are damaged, defective, or dirty, it can disrupt the charging process. So inspecting them is a logical first step in diagnosing your hoverboard charging issue.
What to Do When Your Hoverboard Won’t Charge(Step by Step)
1. Start With the Basics: Is the Charger Working?
The most obvious place to begin troubleshooting a hoverboard that won’t charge is verifying that the charger itself is functional and making a solid connection.
Here are the basic steps to confirm the charger is working properly:
- Plug Into Working Outlet – Make sure the A/C plug is inserted fully into a powered wall outlet. Try a different outlet just to be sure.
- Check Charger Connection – Verify the DC plug is firmly inserted into the charge port on the hoverboard. Wiggle it gently to scrape away any debris.
- Inspect Charger Condition – Look for any external damage like frayed wires or bent plug prongs. This can prevent proper charging.
- LED Indicator – Most chargers have an LED that lights up when connected to indicate power. If not, it could be defective.
- Warmth – A functioning charger will become slightly warm during charging. If it stays cold could mean it’s not working.
- Test Voltage – Use a voltmeter to test voltage at the charger DC plug. Should show between 40 and 50V when connected.
If there are no obvious issues with the charger itself, then the problem likely lies with the hoverboard charging components. But first, a basic reset can sometimes get things charging properly again.
2. Reset Your Hoverboard
Before getting into more complicated troubleshooting, try the simple fix of resetting your hoverboard. Here’s how:
- Make sure the hoverboard is turned off.
- Disconnect the charger plug from the hoverboard.
- Leave the hoverboard off and unplugged for 10-15 minutes. This gives the internal computer time to fully reset.
- After letting it sit, reconnect the charger and see if charging resumes as normal.
Power cycling the hoverboard essentially reboots the smart battery management system. This can clear any software glitches that are preventing charging. It’s a quick fix worth trying before anything more complex.
3. Low Voltage Could Be the Culprit
If resetting the hoverboard doesn’t work, the next step is checking the battery voltage.
Hoverboard batteries need to maintain a minimum voltage to accept charging. This is usually around 3.7 volts per cell or about 37-42 volts for the entire battery pack.
If the battery voltage drops too low, such as from fully discharging or damage, the hoverboard will not recognize the charger and refuse to charge. Essentially the battery is in a deep sleep mode.
You’ll need to use a volt meter to check the actual voltage of your hoverboard battery. Simply set the volt meter to the appropriate range and touch the positive and negative probes to the battery contacts.
Compare the reading to your hoverboard’s specs to see if the voltage is at the proper level for charging. Too low, and that’s likely your issue. Here are some voltage scenarios and solutions:
Voltage Normal: If your battery is at the full 40+ volt level, then low voltage is ruled out as the cause. Move on to checking other components.
Voltage Low: Batteries in the 30-39 volt range may begin charging if left on the charger for an extended period as the voltage slowly increases.
Voltage Very Low: If extremely low under 30 volts, the battery cells could be damaged or unable to hold a charge and may need replacement.
No Voltage: An absolute zero reading indicates a bad connection or faulty battery that likely requires professional repair or replacement.
So check the voltage first before assuming your hoverboard battery needs to be swapped out. Reviving a low-voltage battery is often possible.
4. Revive Low Voltage Batteries
Don’t give up hope if your hoverboard battery is reading low in the 30-39 volt range. There is a trick that can potentially bring low-voltage batteries back up to full charge ability.
Simply connect the working hoverboard charger and leave it plugged in continuously for several hours, even with no noticeable activity. This slowly feeds a trickle current into the depleted battery over time.
Eventually, this can raise the voltage high enough for normal charging to resume. Be patient, as this process can take 6-12 hours to have an effect. Also, use a proper hoverboard charger and not a generic battery charger, which could damage the smart battery.
This voltage recovery method works best if the battery has been accidentally discharged fully due to inactivity but is otherwise still functional. It likely will not work if the battery has aged significantly or has defective cells.
But for low-voltage situations, it’s worth taking a day to attempt to bring the battery voltage back up before replacing what could be an otherwise healthy battery. Just monitor voltage periodically as it charges low and slow.
5. Check the Hoverboard’s Charge Port
Assuming you’ve ruled out the charger and low-voltage battery issues, the next place to investigate is the charge port itself.
The charge port is the physical connector on the hoverboard where you plug in the charger. It is essentially the gateway that allows electricity to flow from the charger to the battery.
If this port is obstructed or damaged in some way, it will block proper charging even with a good charger and battery.
Here are the key things to check on the hoverboard charge port:
- Debris – Lint, dirt, sand, and other particulates can get lodged in the port, blocking the connection. Carefully clean out with an air duster.
- Bent Pins – Dropping or jamming the charger into the port can bend the internal pins, preventing contact.
- Loose Wires – Frayed or disconnected wires in the port will lead to intermittent charging issues.
- Physical Damage – Cracks or melted plastic can stop the charger from seating fully into the port.
- Fuse – Some charge ports have a built-in fuse that could blow and need replacement.
- Wear & Tear – General corrosion or damage from moisture over time degrades function.
Thoroughly inspecting the charge port for any signs of debris, damage or excessive wear is an important troubleshooting step. Address any issues discovered to restore normal charging.
6. Try Charging With a Friend’s Hoverboard
Up to this point, we’ve operated under the assumption that the original charger is functional. But there is still a possibility it is defective and the true root cause of your hoverboard not charging.
The only way to rule out a faulty charger is to attempt charging your hoverboard with a different known good charger. This means borrowing a friend’s or buying a brand-new replacement.
Ideally, use the exact same OEM charger model that your hoverboard came with for proper voltage and compatibility. But any similar charger from the same hoverboard brand should work for testing.
If using the alternate charger successfully charges your hoverboard, then you can confirm your original charger is bad and needs to be replaced. Never use a generic or multi-voltage charger though, as this could damage your hoverboard’s smart battery.
Replacing just the inexpensive charger is obviously preferable to buying a whole new hoverboard or battery replacement. So be sure to test with a buddy’s charger before assuming larger problems.
7. The Charging Port Fuse Could Need Replacement
Many hoverboards have a protection fuse built into the charging port to prevent issues like surges blowing out delicate electronics. But this tiny fuse can also cause charging problems if it burns out prematurely.
Symptoms of a blown port fuse include the charger staying stone cold when plugged in or charging intermittently cutting in and out. Visual inspection likely won’t reveal the tiny fused is blown.
Replacing a bad charging port fuse requires basic soldering skills and small tools like tweezers and a soldering iron. It also needs to open up the hoverboard housing to access the guts.
If you are comfortable doing minor soldering repairs, look up tutorials for replacing the charging fuse for your specific hoverboard brand and model. The fuse type and location vary.
Alternatively, any electronics repair shop can swap out a bad fuse for a few dollars in labor costs. Just be sure they use a fuse matching the voltage rating for safety.
While replacing a blown fuse takes some work, it beats buying a whole new hoverboard or even a new charging port. So don’t overlook a burnt fuse as a potential culprit.
When Professional Repair Is Needed?
If you have patiently tried all of the troubleshooting tips for a hoverboard that won’t charge to no avail, the next recourse is to seek professional service.
Some common reasons to take your hoverboard in for repair include:
- The battery no longer holds a charge and needs a replacement
- Charging port requires soldering repairs or replacement
- Suspected issues with the motherboard, wiring, or electronics
Finding a reliable hoverboard repair shop requires some research. Start by asking friends for recommendations. Look at online reviews for shops in your area to gauge quality work and customer service.
Repair costs vary widely based on the components needing replacement and shop hourly labor fees. Expect to spend $100-300+ for major repairs like battery replacement. More complex electronics repairs can cost closer to the price of a new hoverboard.
But for expensive hoverboards that are otherwise in good shape, repairing can be worthwhile to extend their useful life at a fraction of the replacement cost. Just be sure the shop will stand by their work with a repair warranty.
Preventative Measures to Avoid Charging Woes
Once you finally get your hoverboard charging properly again, it’s smart to take preventative measures to avoid similar issues cropping up. Here are some tips:
- Recharge Often – Never let the battery fully deplete to zero if possible. Recharge every few uses to avoid deep discharge.
- Use Original Charger – Stick with the OEM charger designed for your model for optimal performance and life.
- Keep Contacts Clean – Prevent corrosion and intermittent connection with isopropyl alcohol.
- Check Connections – Ensure the charger is fully seated in the port before each use.
- Monitor Age – Expect to replace batteries after 1-2 years of regular use as capacity diminishes.
- Avoid Overheating – Don’t charge in excessively hot environments as heat degrades batteries.
- Replace the Damaged Charger – Don’t risk further issues; swap out the charger if frayed or non-functional.
- Water Protection – Adding sealant to the charge port can protect the internals from moisture damage.
You can squeeze the maximum lifespan out of your hoverboard’s battery and electronics with proper care and charging habits. Don’t wait until problems occur to be proactive.