How to charge your phone without a charger? All smartphone users have encountered a dead battery – and no charger in sight – at some point. Nowadays, most of us depend on our phones to live, so it’s not something you can do without easily.
Even if you’ve lost the charger that came with your phone, there are plenty of ways to recharge it. So you know what to do when your phone dies next time, let’s take a look at some of your options.
Table of Contents
The Best Way to Charge Your Phone’s Battery Without a Charger
Use another device
What you’ll need:
- Connectors: Micro USB, Type C, and lightning (depending on the brand of the phone)
- A device with a USB port that is charged
Any USB port can be used to charge a smartphone. The USB end of your charging cable can be plugged into another device, such as a laptop if you don’t have an outlet.
There are a couple of reasons why this isn’t the ideal method. The USB ports are notoriously slow to charge, delivering only 500-900 mA. Furthermore, the power won’t appear out of nowhere-you’ll drain the battery of your device while you charge it.
This is the quickest and easiest way to charge a phone without a charger if you’re in a hurry.
Invest in a portable power bank
Power banks are devices that store energy for recharging electronic devices. Portable power packs are about the size of a credit card, which is definitely small enough to fit in a purse, briefcase, or backpack.
You should take the power bank out and charge it every six months or so since power banks don’t hold their charge forever. In the event of an emergency, this will ensure you have a way to charge your phone.
Charge it from another battery
Here’s what you’ll need:
- AA, AAA, or 9V batteries
- Two wires (ideally insulated and exposed)
- Electrical tape
The basic concept is the same as charging another device: transferring stored energy from one source to another. Although it takes a bit more planning and preparation, it allows you to charge your phone when you don’t have access to a wall outlet or USB port. It’s also one of the methods that will work if your charging port malfunctions.
The following method (or any other method that involves removing the battery) should not be attempted on an iPhone. You cannot access the battery on Apple products at home without permanently damaging them.
You can charge your phone with another battery by following these steps:
- Remove the back cover of your phone. To avoid causing damage, you should proceed carefully when removing the battery from most phones. When you apply pressure to the right spot on most Android phones (Samsung, Google, LG, etc.) the cover will pop off.
- Identify the battery’s voltage by removing it and examining it. The voltage should be printed on the battery’s label. This information should be in your phone’s manual if you can’t find it. Cell phones usually have 3.7-volt batteries.
- Make sure you have enough batteries to equal or exceed the voltage of the battery on your phone. A single 9-volt battery should do. You’ll need at least three of the smaller batteries (AAA, AA, C, or D) because they are 1.5 volts each.
- Connect multiple batteries in series by touching the positive (+) end of one battery with the negative (-) end of the next. Tape them together with electrical tape.
- Your negative wire should be attached to the negative terminal of your battery (or battery series), and your positive wire should be attached to the positive terminal. If you’re using uninsulated wires, wear rubber gloves to avoid being shocked.
- The other end of both wires should be taped over the charging contacts on the cell phone battery. This is usually located near the top of the battery (where it connects to the charging points inside the phone’s housing).
It will take a while for your battery to be charged using this method, and it probably won’t fill it up completely. Eventually, though, the phone will at least be able to charge sufficiently so that you can use it.
DIY a charger out of another cable
What you’ll need:
- USB cable
- Scissors or wire strippers
If you have a spare USB cable, but it doesn’t have the connector your phone needs, you can bypass the charging port and use it directly on your battery. You can do this by:
- The non-USB end of the cable (or the end of the USB to USB cable) should be cut off.
- You can reveal the wires by peeling back the insulation. There will typically be four, color-coded with red, black, green, and white insulation.
- Continue stripping the red and black wires until you have about an inch of exposed metal at the ends of each.
- Remove the battery and open your phone. The wire ends can either be taped to the battery’s contacts or inserted into the charging pins inside the phone’s housing, then re-inserted. It is very important to match the red wire to the positive (+) pin and the black wire to the negative (-) pin. The phone could be damaged if the wires are switched.
- Connect the USB end of the cable to a device or wall outlet.
Please do not touch the exposed part of the wire when the cord is plugged in, especially if you are using a wall outlet. To avoid shocks, you should always unplug the charger from the wall before removing it from your battery.
The rubbing method
To be fair, this isn’t really a method to charge your battery, since rubbing it won’t do anything if it is completely dead. In fact, rubbing a battery raises the temperature of its cells, which increases their efficiency. This lets you use the last 3-4% of a battery’s charge that you couldn’t otherwise access.
The first step is to remove the battery. Then rub it between your hands or against your pants’ leg for three to four minutes. Putting the battery back in the phone will give you a few moments of power, basically enough to make an emergency call.
What if the Charging Port is Broken?
About three years is the average lifespan of a cell phone battery. It’s likely the charging port, not the battery, that’s malfunctioning if your phone is older than that, but the battery won’t charge when it’s plugged in.
Two options are available if the charging port on your phone is damaged:
- Remove the battery and charge it directly. The DIY charger method as well as the battery-to-battery method described above bypass the charging port.
- Take advantage of wireless charging. Although not all modern phones offer it, some do. Wireless charging pads can be expensive. Despite that, they are still cheaper than a new phone – the only other option for iPhone users whose charging ports stop working.