Iphone 6S Battery Rep

Can You Use Any Charger With Any Mobile Phone, Laptop, Camera, or Tablet? 

Every cell phone, laptop, and tablet seem to come with their own charger.  If you’re like me, you’ve probably compiled a number of chargers over the years.  So the question becomes: is it safe to use a charger with your phone, laptop, camera, or tablet computer that is not the original manufacturer’s charger which came with the device?

Kinds of Chargers

In this article, we’ll concentrate on three types of chargers: laptop chargers, micro USB chargers (these are used with telephones, tablet computers, and cameras), and Apple Lightning Connectors.  While some devices have chargers using a slightly different head or charging cable, these are the most frequent.

Laptop chargers are fairly specific to the device they include.  However, there may be some generic chargers which boast the ability to be interchanged between laptops.  This always requires changing of the charger”head” and may not be the optimal charging amperage or voltage for your device.

Micro USBs are theoretically designed to be interchangeable, and are standard in many smartphones, Android apparatus, and tablets.  Micro USB chargers typically have the exact same voltage, but may draw different amps.  I will explain this further later and how to know whether the charger is safe to use (based on its listed amps and voltage).

For older devices using a 30-pin charge interface, a connector can be used to charge with the Lightning Connector.

In order for a charger for use on another device, it’s important that the plug  of the charger (the”head”) fit snugly to the charging port of the device.  Micro USBs are the same across the board as far as charging heads, while notebook chargers are often specific to both make and model.  However, the plug fitting firmly is just one part of this equation.

How Voltage and Amperage Matter

Determined by the power brick of the charger you will get a tag with the charger’s voltage (V) and amperage (A).  For other types of chargers, like a smartphone charger, this information is usually found at the base of the charger, where it would meet the wall.  For the device you’re attempting to control, the voltage and amperage required will be seen on the battery that came with the device or on the company’s website.

Voltage is how much power the charger will draw into the apparatus, or just how much is being”pushed” to the device by the charger.  A phone will usually pull up to around 5V, though a notebook can pull up to 25V.  A charger must equal the voltage required by the device. 

Amperage is how fast power is”pulled” into the device, or how much electricity is used by the device.  The quantity of volts won’t ever change, but the quantity of amps that the system pulls may change depending on how hard the device is working.  The number that you locate on the battery that came with your device will be the max amount of amps which may be pulled by the device.  If a device is paired with a charger that cannot support the amp requirement, it can burn out the power supply and kill the device.

So if you have a modern USB device (smart phone, tablet, or camera) you can plug into a high-amperage USB port and enjoy quicker charging (as long as the voltage is equivalent ).  *Site Note: if you have an older device, it might not work with USB ports that employ the newest Battery Charging Specification.

If The Micro USB  Charger’s Voltage Isn’t 5v…

Some devices might have their voltage recorded using a plus/minus on it like that: 5v +- 5%.  If this is the case, you may use a charger rated at 4.75 to 5.25v because that score is telling you is that the apparatus can take 5v minus 5 percent of 5v = 4.75 volts  OR  5v plus 5 percent of 5v = 5.25 volts.  This means anything between 4.75 t0 5.25v is safe to use (as long as the amperage of the charger is equivalent to or greater than the device’s listed amperage).

An interesting thing to note is all chargers supply a higher voltage than the batteries they charge.  That’s pretty much how they work.  There has to be a voltage differential to produce the necessary current flow in the proper direction to charge the battery.  When you look at your vehicle, it has a 12V battery, but typical alternators provide 13.8 to 14.4V charging voltage to the battery.

Stay Away From Cheap Knockoff Chargers

The issue with knockoffs, especially cheap knockoffs, is they frequently don’t support the energy needs of the device, or are not built to keep a steady flow securely.  This can cause damage to the device but can also pose a safety/fire hazard. Overall, it’s best to stay with the charger designed for the device you’re using.

Now You Understand How to Safely & Effectively Swap Chargers

I hope this article was able to assist you.  Now you know how to safely and effectively use a charger that did not come with your smart phone, laptop, camera, tabletcomputer, or other apparatus.  Make sure you follow exactly what we said and you should be good to go!