Draining batteries for a flight to Portugal

#1

Hi all
Does anyone know if you have to actually drain mavic 2 pro batteries before boarding an aeroplane? Same question for taping up the electrical terminals?

#2

There is no hard and fast rule for draining batteries, each airline will have its own rules, some will just advise that they recommend to discharge to 20%. It may be better to ask the airline in which you are flying with. As to the taping up of the battery terminals, again this is down to the individual airline, some like them taped up just in case they touch something of conductive metal in your luggage (keys, coins, razor etc) and shorts out the terminals, causing a fire. This is why some want you to have the battery at 20%. A lipo battery fire at. 100% charge is harder to put out. And that’s the reason why you MUST put them in your hand luggage, if they catch fire in the hold of the aircraft, it is extremely dangerous, you’d be surprised at just how dense some people can be and not understand the risks.
The crew can easily deal with them if they are in the overhead lockers. You might see advertised “fire proof” lipo battery bags. A bit of a waste of money if you have taken the precaution of draining the battery and taping up the terminals, but they can’t do any harm and shows you are responsible.

#3

Normal rule of thumb with electronics is you have to be able to power it on if asked by security. I’d go down to 25% or so (one light) and stick 'em in lipo bags.

To be honest, last time I flew with one they didn’t look twice.

#4

Thanks for the quick response. I’m flying with British Airways and they don’t specify a need to drain. I should have also said that I have LiPo cases for each battery and know (thanks to a great video from @ianinlondon cheers chap!) that the batteries for an M2P are less than the 100Wh limit for multiple batteries. I’m going to leave them fully charged and risk it for a biscuit!

https://www.britishairways.com/en-gb/information/baggage-essentials/liquids-and-restrictions

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#5

Leaving them fully charged is taking a risk, especially as they then could confiscate them from you, then you are up shit creek, and having to fork out for new batteries.
It is usually not the Airline directly that checks your hand luggage, but the baggage security that you have to watch out for.
That is from my personal experience of many flights over the last year or so, in many different Airports around the UK.
To be fair, most airports are use to people taking drones abroad and quite often do not give them a second look, @Brian ‘s advice is spot on, and very much the way that most sensible people would go, good luck, and happy hols !.

#6

Thanks all… I’ve got an hour and a half to drain 3 batteries then :joy:

#7

It would be really useful if there was a device, with a suitable resistor, one could plug into the battery to drain it at a sensibly fast rate.
Should be simple and cheap.

MP Battery Rapid Discharge Device?
split this topic #8

21 posts were merged into an existing topic: MP Battery Discharge Device

#10

The Mavic is currently hovering in the back garden on it’s second battery. I’m also using the 3rd battery with the USB adapter to recharge a couple of other devices (phone, USB battery back, etc.). Should be done soon.

Obviously I’ve decided to drain the batteries but I’m going to ask one of the airport officials if they have any instruction or guidance about needing to drain batteries… I’ll post the results.

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#11

It’s not the “airport” that make the rules. It’s the airlines.

Having seen many posts on this over the last few years, you’ll find that the person you ask …
a) may be a jobsworth working for the airport, not the airline
b) may not really know
c) is not an airline representative - and it’s the airline’s rules that must be obeyed.

The best advice I’ve seen is to find the information on the airline’s website (EVERY airline has information regarding Lipo batteries), print it off in its entirety so that it includes all the page headings to prove it belongs to the airline you are flying on, obey their instructions, and take the printed page with you should checkin not be following that airline’s policy.

Also see …

And for an illuminating tale of what can happen when you are doing EVERYTHING right, and find yourself dealing with “airport officials” that don’t know/don’t want to know the rules … combined with a misplaced sense of power and importance, this is a worthwhile read …

#12

@Lozzer I’ve also moved this thread over to #Travel-advice-for-anyone-taking-their-drone-abroad since it will be easier for others to find in the future.

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#13

Handy if you have that option, but, for me, pissing off the neighbours might be a more unavoidable problem than this …

:wink:

#14

Spot on @OzoneVibe… Sailed through security without so much as a raised eyebrow. Found an official looking person and asked about the need to discharge LiPo batteries. He freely admitted that he wasn’t sure but pointed me towards a more seasoned looking airport veteran. He confirmed it’s entirely down to the aircraft operator but said he thought generally it would not be required. I mentioned my use of LiPo bags in a vain attempt to impress him. It didn’t work :joy: and merrily wished me safe travels.

Look forward to posting some footage around Vilamoura and nearby coastline… There are some good looking caves but they’re about an hr away on a moped :stuck_out_tongue_winking_eye:

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#15

There is some fantastic coast around there, car hire is dirt cheap, there is also an excellent coastal bus service

#21

That’s some great footage, thanks for sharing!

Many thanks
Laurence Vale

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split this topic #22

2 posts were split to a new topic: Almost lost the drone outside Vilamoura harbour