We grew up being told that you can cause a device to overheat or damage the battery if you leave it plugged in. Moreover, we all have fretted about the precious battery life that we thought would diminish if we charge our phones overnight. The funny thing is it is not a myth.
Most of the devices we used in the past would be damaged by overcharging. They would heat up with the flow of current, resulting in damage to the device or battery.
In rare cases, overcharging could set the device on fire or cause it to explode. However, those days are now gone. These hazards belong to the pre-Lithium-ion battery era.
Thankfully, things are different today and all Apple products are equipped with rechargeable Lithium-ion batteries. You can read about their lifespan and how to get the most out of it here.
As reassuring as it sounds, it still begs a few pertinent questions to be answered.
Is it safe to charge your AirPods overnight? Will you ruin, damage, or set the charging case on fire? Do AirPods or the case overheat if left plugged in?
These concerns are legitimate given how expensive AirPods are and how much we depend on them to enjoy music on the go. Luckily, AirPods and their nifty charging case have built-in batteries engineered to sidestep these issues.
Can you overcharge an AirPods case?
You cannot overcharge an AirPods case even if you tried. Apple uses Lithium-ion batteries for AirPods. Whether you are using a cable or Qi mat, the AirPods case is designed to stop charging the battery once it is fully charged. This is true for all models including AirPods Pro and Max.
This article will discuss them in detail along with some dos and don’ts of charging your AirPods safely.
It usually takes an hour to fully charge the AirPods case.
If your AirPods are plugged into the lightning cable after being fully charged, the device stops the flow of current to the battery. It is designed this way to prevent damage and eliminate the concerns of overcharging the battery.
The only exception to this is if you have a defective battery, third-party charger, or fake AirPods.
Do AirPods stop charging when full?
Yes, AirPods stop charging when full. They are also designed to shut off when you place them in the case. The case charges the AirPods and stops as soon as they are fully charged.
If the case were to keep charging them, they would overheat and be damaged from the heat.
Apple is well known for its meticulous intentions and intelligent features. They were not going to overlook such an obvious feature.
Therefore, AirPods are designed this way to ensure that the AirPods are not damaged or drain the charged case unnecessarily.
The charging status light can help you decipher what is happening. A red light indicates your AirPods are charging in the case.
An amber light indicates the case is charging via a lightning cable or wireless charging mat. A green light indicates that the device is fully charged.
Note: We are not talking about the AirPods charging case. We are talking about the AirPods.
Can I leave my AirPods case plugged in?
It is safe to keep the AirPods case plugged in. There are mechanisms in place that ensure the case will stop charging when the battery is full.
It means there will be no damage if you leave it plugged into a lightning cable or Qi mat. You literally cannot overcharge the AirPods case.
The wireless charging case can also be left overnight on a Qi-compatible charging mat. A red light generally indicates the case has less than one full charge remaining.
The amber or orange light indicates charging is underway. It switches to green when the AirPods case is fully charged.
As mentioned earlier, the device automatically stops the flow of current once the case is charged. That makes it 100% safe to leave your AirPods case plugged in for however long you like, even overnight.
It will not have any negative consequences on the battery or battery life of the device.
Can my AirPods and AirPods case overheat?
We established that there is no way overcharging can cause AirPods or the charging case to overheat. If left uncovered in direct sunlight, near a heat source like a cooker, or in parked cars, they can overheat.
High-temperature conditions can alter the behavior and performance of your device. Here are a few other things to keep in mind to prevent your AirPods from overheating:
Use and store them in the appropriate ambient temperature
Apple Support suggests keeping AirPods, AirPods Pro, and AirPods max in the optimal operating temperature. The ambient temperature to use them is 0º and 35º C (32º to 95º F). Cold conditions may change the battery life temporarily or cause the device to turn off.
Hot temperatures, on the other hand, can permanently shorten battery life. It is best to store your AirPods in the case when you are outdoors or at the beach.
Stay away from aftermarket or third-party chargers
Lastly, avoid buying third-party chargers to save a few bucks. Many of these non-Apple brand products are neither compatible nor approved for your AirPods.
They are relatively cheaper and promise faster charging times. However, they use high voltage to charge AirPods, which may result in overheating and damage.
Your AirPods case can warm up while charging
Do not get baffled if you notice your AirPods case getting warm while charging. Some heat is expected when you charge a device with a rechargeable battery. It does not pose any danger to your device, which should return to normal temperature after it is fully charged.
There have been some reports of AirPods overheating and exploding. However, most of these were found to be fake upon investigation. That being said, it is rare but fully possible for a few models to have a malfunctioning battery that doesn’t shut off when the case is charged.
For more information take a look at this YouTube video.
Can AirPods explode if they are wet?
All batteries are prone to moisture and water damage, especially the small Lithium-ion batteries used in AirPods. Unfortunately, AirPods are not water-resistant or waterproof.
They do not have a water or liquid damage indicator. Still, they won’t explode if they are wet. AirPods water damage is only likely to result in distorted audio or hurt their functionality.
First off, Apple goes to great lengths to ensure its products are safe. AirPods have been meticulously designed and rigorously tested before they were launched to market. Secondly, AirPods have Lithium-ion batteries. They do not explode under any circumstances.
At the very worst, Lithium-ion batteries can catch fire, but they are unlikely to explode as some of us hear. The Airpods battery is tiny and well-shielded in hard plastic. They are highly unlikely to explode and break through the shielding even if they fail.
What happens if AirPods get too warm?
Besides charging or using the device, AirPods can get warm due to temperature conditions and direct sunlight. These factors may cause temporary changes in behavior and performance.
The device is designed to regulate its temperature to protect the internal components.
But prolonged or repeated exposure to heat can result in permanent damage. The ideal temperature range to store AirPods is – 10º C and 45º C (14º F to 113º F). According to the Apple website, the ideal ambient temperature for using the AirPods is 0º C and 35º C (32º F to 95º F).
Contrary to what some of us think, you don’t need to worry about melting AirPods or frying the case if you keep it plugged in for too long. Lithium-ion batteries charge efficiently and last longer. Moreover, we have made it clear that you literally cannot overcharge them.
You may have bought a fake or received a defective battery if the above information does not apply to your AirPods. For the latter, you can get a free replacement by contacting Apple Support if your device is still under warranty.