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What Happens When a Drone Runs Out of Battery? 

 September 19, 2021

By  Phil Borges

It is a possibility that your drone might run out of battery while you are flying it. If such a situation arises, what happens to your drone? How will it affect the way it flies? Is there anything you can do to prevent this kind of situation?

If your drone happens to run out of battery, it will either crash and fall to the ground or it will land safely on its own or return to home (RTH). This will depend on the model of the drone as well as the settings that you have put in place.

It is important to ensure that you take measures to avoid this kind of situation in the first place. You must also be prepared for such a situation in case it occurs. Read ahead to find out more about this.

What Happens When a Drone Battery Dies?

When a drone battery dies, there are two potential outcomes that you can expect that also depend on the kind of drone you have along with its features and settings. We can discuss these outcomes in further detail through this section.

Your Drone Could Crash

If the battery in your drone has completely drained out due to a sudden decrease in the voltage, it is likely that your drone might crash. There are several reasons that could lead to this. For instance:

The weather conditions might be too harsh.

There might be issues or damage with the batteries of the drone.

The model of your drone might be outdated and might not have the relevant features that can help you prevent crashing.

In case your model is too old, it might not allow you to make adjustments to the settings. Further, the absence of necessary software and features could have a damaging effect on your drone as you won’t be able to control how it lands if it runs out of battery.

In the worst possible outcome, therefore, you can expect your drone to crash, fall and get damaged, especially without any safety measures in place.

Your Drone Could Land Safely

On the other hand, your drone could land safely and return back home if you have enabled this feature. With GPS in place along with advanced software and phone apps, you can follow the trajectory of your drone, check the battery status and allow the drone to make its landing without any kind of damage.

Luckily, newer models of drones come equipped with these features that you can make good use of. Moreover, if you have made a considerable investment, you are most likely to have access to such features as compared to cheaper models.

Your drone might also be able to prevent running into barriers in its path as long as you have taken the right steps for this.

How to Prevent Drones from Running Out of Battery

There are several things you can do to prevent drones from running out of battery. Taking the right precautions can go a long way in avoiding any major issue or accident while your drone is still up in the air.

Further, it can also help you maintain your own responsibility in keeping your drone in check without causing a hindrance to others.

Take a look at some ways to prevent a drone from running out of battery:

Charge It Fully

Before you fly your drone, you should ensure that you charge up the batteries fully so that the chances of running out of battery during the flight are minimized. This can allow your drone to fly without accidents.

Further, it might also help to switch to fully charged batteries each time you want to fly a drone. This can go a pretty long way so that you don’t need to worry each time.

Confirm Weather Conditions

Another important precaution you can take is to confirm beforehand how the weather is expected to look like whenever you plan to fly your drone. By checking the weather forecast, you can either change your plan or protect your drone from damage by attaching covers or floats that can help it to navigate rough conditions.

Use New Batteries

Your batteries can go on for several years and cycles while still performing efficiently. However, after a point, you may start to notice that your batteries are no longer working as well as they used to due to natural wear and tear due to constant usage and charging.

If this happens, you should buy new batteries that can solve this issue for you.

Keep Your Batteries in Good Condition

You need to regularly take care of your batteries to make sure they work well during the flight. This kind of maintenance involves cleaning them up frequently to prevent the build-up of corrosive elements.

Moreover, you must allow your batteries some time to rest and cool down after each flight instead of charging them up immediately. If you want to keep your batteries in storage for a long period of time, you should ensure proper conditions to do so that include dry surroundings and keeping them charged halfway through.

Use Newer Models

It is better for you to invest in newer models, even if they are a bit expensive. This can allow you to gain access to advanced software and smartphone apps that let you control the settings of the drone.

By turning on the return to home (RTH) feature, you can prevent your drone from crashing and falling even if it runs out of battery. By checking the battery status through your app, you can plan ahead effectively. Further, GPS tracking can also let you follow the trajectory of your drone.

Flying Precautions

Whenever you fly your drone, there are some precautions you can take so as to prevent accidents. For example, by preventing your drone from flying around too many people or near sensitive areas such as busy roads, airports, public transport stations or anywhere that you cannot monitor, you can avoid major issues in case your drone runs out of battery.

Frequently Asked Questions

How Long Can a Drone Fly without Recharging?

Generally, you can expect your drone to fly for 20-30 minutes provided that your batteries are fully charged. However, if you fly your drone without recharging it before the flight, it might not last for more than 5 minutes in the air.

It could even end up coming back down within a few seconds or a minute if the battery level is too low.

Usually, you will be able to see the battery level on your app or the drone’s display or remote controller. If you see that the level is too low, you can and should simply recharge the drone to make it fly for a longer time.

What Happens If Phone Dies While Flying Drone?

If your phone happens to die down while you are flying your drone, you will still be able to safely control the drone through your remote controller. You must also keep some other devices connected and charged so that you don’t lose out on too much even if your phone dies.

Further, make sure that you turn on your RTH feature beforehand so that, in the worst case, your phone can return home on its own without you needing to access your phone.

Can You Track a Lost Drone?

If your drone goes out of range and gets lost, you can use a tracker (if you own one) to follow the path that your drone has taken. This tracker will also have its own phone app that you can easily use to track your drone. Usually, this is done through GPS tracking and sensors.

If, however, you do not own a tracker, you can use some other methods. For example, by enabling the RTH option, you can try to get your drone to come back to you. You can also use the model’s own app that might have a tracking option. Make good use of the last coordinates to find your drone.

Further, you should ensure that your drone’s controller is working throughout the process. If your drone has a camera, you can also use that to check its last location.

About the author

Hi, I'm Phil Borges.. thanks for reading.. My wife says I can't shut up about batteries so to save my marriage I've started this blog .. where I'd be ranting about batteries! Please leave a comment if you have any questions, I'm happy to help!

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