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Swollen Battery Information and Guidance

Summary: Lithium-ion Polymer batteries are housed in a flexible multi-layer pouch, which may sometimes swell for a variety of reasons.

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Lithium-Ion Polymer Technology:

Battery swelling is a failure mode associated with a type of battery cell technology called Lithium-ion Polymer. Lithium-ion Polymer batteries have become popular across the industry in recent years due to their slim and customizable form factor and longer battery useful life. Lithium-ion Polymer batteries are housed in a flexible multi-layer pouch, which may sometimes swell for a variety of reasons including but not limited to age, usage pattern, and environmental conditions.

In contrast, older model notebooks across the industry used lithium-ion cylindrical cells, which had a metal casing and did not swell.

The risk of battery swelling, while low, is inherent with Lithium-ion Polymer cell technology, which is widely used across the tech industry (not unique to Dell or PCs). The issue is industry-wide affecting all notebook computer companies.

Swelling & Safety:

A swollen battery may impact the performance of the notebook and in some cases damage the product enclosure. While a swollen battery in your Dell product does not pose a safety issue, a swollen battery should be replaced as soon as it is detected. As a reminder, it is important to always purchase genuine replacement batteries from Dell.

Product safety statement regarding swollen Dell Lithium-Ion batteries: (English only)

Is my battery swollen?

If any of the below indicators are present, your battery may be swollen. Please contact Dell technical support to determine available options (in addition to following local policy/procedure for helpdesk or technical support matters):

  • Touchpad or Keyboard lifting.
  • System rocking when placed on an even surface (not related to broken or missing feet).
  • Uneven seams where case/cover parts meeting (enclosure splitting).
  • A swollen battery has the potential to physically damage the product enclosure. Any damaged system components should be repaired or replaced in the process of replacing the swollen battery before resuming use of the system.

Handling Guidelines for Li-ion Batteries in Dell PCs:

Swollen batteries should not be used and should be replaced and disposed of properly. Handling and replacement of any Lithium-ion Polymer battery, including a swollen one, must be done with caution and in accordance with the handling instructions below. This guidance can also be found under the Documentation (Manuals & Documents) section for each applicable product on or at this link:

  • Discharge the battery before removing it from the system. To discharge the battery, unplug the AC adapter from the system and operate the system only on battery power. When the system will no longer power on when the power button is pressed, the battery is fully discharged.
  • Do not crush, drop, mutilate, or penetrate the battery with foreign objects.
  • Do not expose the battery to high temperatures or disassemble battery packs and cells.
  • Do not apply pressure to the surface of the battery.
  • Do not bend the battery.
  • Do not use tools of any type to pry on or against the battery.
  • If a battery gets stuck in a device, do not try to free it. Forced removal may damage your battery by puncturing, bending, or crushing. Contact Technical Support for assistance and further instructions.
  • Do not attempt to reassemble a damaged or swollen battery into a notebook PC.
  • Swollen batteries should be returned to Dell in an approved shipping container (provided by Dell), to comply with transportation regulations or disposed at an approved recycling center.
  • Using a non-Dell or incompatible battery may increase the risk of fire or explosion. Replace the battery only with a compatible battery purchased from Dell that is designed to work with your Dell computer. Do not use a battery from other computers with your computer. Always purchase genuine batteries from or otherwise directly from Dell.

Warranty Replacements:

For assistance with repair or replacement options’, please Contact Technical Support.

Additional Information

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Last Published Date

01 Dec 2023



Article Type

How To