Why Is My Traxxas Lipo Battery Swelling (Unraveling Mystery)

If you own a Traxxas RC car, chances are high that you use a Lipo battery. These batteries are well known for their high power density and can deliver a lot of current. However, if not handled correctly, they can become dangerous and cause significant damage.

Traxxas lipo battery is swelling due to over-charging or discharging, excessive heat, or physical damage to the battery. When a lipo battery swells, it is no longer safe to use and should be disposed of properly.

In this article, we will explain the reasons why Traxxas lipo batteries swell and what you can do to prevent it from happening.

Why Is My Traxxas Lipo Battery Swelling: Common Reasons

Traxxas lipo batteries are an important part of electric-powered radio-controlled cars designed for maximum performance. Unfortunately, sometimes these batteries may expand or “swell,” which can pose a safety hazard if not addressed promptly.

Cause Solution
Overcharging Use a properly sized charger. Follow charger instructions and charge at the recommended rate. Avoid leaving the battery unattended while charging. Consider chargers with safety features.
Over-Discharging Monitor acceleration and battery voltage. Utilize a low-voltage alarm or voltage checker. Stop using the battery before it discharges too much energy. Avoid excessive and continuous acceleration.
Overheating Ensure proper ventilation in the battery compartment. Use fans or heat sinks to cool the battery during long or high-speed runs. Allow the battery to cool down between runs. Avoid exposing the battery to excessive heat sources or direct sunlight.
Physical Damage Secure the battery properly in the car’s compartment. Regularly inspect the battery for scratches, punctures, or dents. Cease using damaged batteries and seek replacement or repair. Handle the battery with care to avoid dropping or mishandling.

Reason 1: Overcharging

Overcharging is one of the leading causes of Traxxas lipo battery swelling. When a battery is overcharged, the voltage is increased beyond its capacity, leading to the buildup of gas inside the battery. As this gas escapes, it causes the battery to expand or swell.

Overcharging can be due to various reasons, including using an incorrectly sized charger, charging the battery at a higher rate than it’s recommended, or even just leaving the battery plugged into the charger for too long.

To avoid overcharging, it’s vital to model the instructions on the charger and never leave your battery charging unattended.

Reason 2: Over-Discharging

Under-discharging a battery is as risky as overcharging it. It occurs when a battery’s voltage drops below a certain limit.

Discharging the battery at a higher rate can lead to the battery overheating, which can cause the battery’s chemical structure to change, releasing gas and subsequently swelling.

It is essential to monitor your car’s acceleration and to pull the battery out of action before it discharges too much energy. A reliable low-voltage alarm will significantly help you take adequate precautions and avoid battery over-discharging.

Reason 3: Overheating

While using your Traxxas car, you must know that its battery might overheat, resulting in battery swelling.

Overheating can primarily be caused by extended driving sessions, high-speed runs, or even car crashes. When the battery overheats, it can react adversely to the chemicals inside, leading to the production of gas and battery swelling, which is why ensuring proper ventilation in the battery compartment is vital.

In addition to maintaining proper ventilation, you can keep your battery from overheating using a fan or heat sink during longer runs. Another good idea is to allow time for the battery to cool between runs.

Reason 4: Physical Damage

Lastly, physical damage can result in Traxxas lipo battery swelling, even if there’s no issue with charging, discharging, or overheating.

Damage to the battery cells or the battery’s casing can lead to gas buildup, which causes battery swelling. Scratches or punctures on the battery can expose its interior, which might also result in swelling.

Always ensure your battery is adequately secured in the car’s battery compartment during driving. In the event of damage, immediately cease the use of the battery and seek a replacement or repair before your next run.

Harmful Effects Of Battery Swelling

Nothing beats the thrill of running your Traxxas RC car with a brand-new battery, which is why it can be quite a disappointment when you notice swelling in your Lipo battery. The question is, why do these batteries swell?

And what are the consequences? We’ll answer the question and we’ll also discuss the potential dangers of a swollen lipo battery, damages to equipment, and safety hazards for users.

The Potential Dangers Of A Swollen Lipo Battery

A swollen lipo battery poses risks that cannot be ignored. Here are some key points to keep in mind:

  • Swelling occurs when gas builds up inside your Lipo battery, which is usually caused by overcharging or overheating.
  • The gas buildup can potentially lead to a rupture, which can cause fires or explosions.
  • A fully charged swollen battery contains more gas, and therefore, it is riskier than a discharged battery.
  • A swollen lipo battery should never be used, charged, or stored, as it can lead to hazardous situations.

Damages To Equipment

Apart from the potential safety issues, a swollen lipo battery can also damage your RC car, charger, and any other equipment connected to it. Here are some potential consequences:

  • The swollen battery can put pressure on the components of your RC car, leading to damage or even deformation of the chassis.
  • A swollen lipo battery may also damage the contacts in your charger, preventing you from charging the battery entirely.
  • The gas leak from the swollen battery can cause corrosion or damage to anything it comes into contact with, such as your RC car, storage compartment, or anything else nearby.

Safety Hazards For Users

Rc cars are meant to be fun and exciting, but safety should never be ignored. Here are some safety hazards associated with swollen lipo batteries:

  • The gas in the swollen battery is potentially toxic. It can cause respiratory problems, skin irritation, or damage to your eyes.
  • The rupturing of a swollen battery can cause burns, fires, and explosions, which can lead to more severe injuries.
  • You should never handle a swollen lipo battery with your bare hands, and you should always dispose of it safely.

A swollen lipo battery should never be ignored. The risks associated with it are too significant to neglect.

How To Monitor And Prevent Swelling

To ensure that your Traxxas lipo battery continues to operate efficiently, it’s essential to monitor your battery’s health regularly. Here are some benefits of keeping an eye on your Traxxas lipo:

  • Identifying damage or swelling in the battery early on can minimize the risk of a battery fire.
  • Checking your battery’s voltage levels can help predict when they need to be replaced.
  • Monitoring batteries can help you learn how they behave under different situations such as extreme temperatures, which can help you with future battery purchases.

Techniques To Keep A Traxxas Lipo Battery From Swelling

Maintaining the health of your Traxxas lipo battery can be easy and simple if you follow these steps:

  • Charge your batteries before their voltage levels reach a dangerous level. This can prevent over-discharging and swelling.
  • Avoid running your batteries beyond their capacity, as this can cause overheating and eventually lead to swelling.
  • Use a balance charger, which can detect and balance each cell individually.
  • Keep your battery’s connectors clean and free from dirt or debris.
  • Always allow your battery to cool down after a run before recharging them

Proper Storage Of Traxxas Lipo Batteries

Storing your Traxxas lipo batteries properly can extend their life span and prevent swelling. Here are some storage tips:

  • Keep your batteries in a cool, dry place, and avoid direct sunlight.
  • Store your batteries at about 50%-60% of their maximum capacity.
  • Always keep your battery’s wires and connectors organized and tangle-free to prevent damage.

Other Tips And Tricks

  • Always read the manufacturer’s instructions and follow the recommended charging rates and storage instructions.
  • Avoid charging the battery overnight or unattended.
  • Check your battery’s voltage after each use to monitor its life span.
  • Dispose of your Traxxas lipo batteries safely and properly once they have reached the end of their life span.

Being proactive and monitoring your Traxxas lipo battery’s health regularly can significantly minimize the risk of swelling and help you get the most out of your battery’s life span.

How A Traxxas Lipo Battery Works

Traxxas lipo batteries have become very popular for radio-controlled vehicles due to their high energy density, low weight, compact size, and relatively long cycle life. Here’s how a Traxxas lipo battery operates:

  • A lipo battery consists of multiple cells, with each cell having a positive and negative electrode separated by a thin polymer electrolyte.
  • When the battery is charged, the positive electrode releases lithium ions that move through the electrolyte to the negative electrode, creating an electric field.
  • When you connect the battery to your vehicle, a chemical reaction occurs, allowing the lithium ions to flow from the negative electrode to the positive electrode, which generates electricity.
  • This electricity powers your Traxxas vehicle, propelling it forward.

Frequently Asked Questions

What Causes A Traxxas Lipo Battery To Swell?

Lipo battery swelling can occur due to overcharging, over-discharging, using a damaged or worn-out battery, charging at the wrong temperature, or improper storage.

Is A Swollen Lipo Battery Dangerous To Use?

Yes, a swollen lipo battery can be dangerous to use. The battery is at risk of bursting, which can cause a fire or an explosion.

How Can I Prevent My Traxxas Lipo Battery From Swelling?

To prevent your lipo battery from swelling, ensure you charge it using the right settings, store it properly, avoid overcharging and discharging, replace or repair it when damaged, and avoid exposing it to extreme temperatures.

Can A Swollen Lipo Battery Be Repaired?

No, a swollen lipo battery cannot be repaired. If your battery is swollen, it is at the end of its life, and you need to replace it.

How Do I Dispose Of A Swollen Traxxas Lipo Battery Safely?

To dispose of a swollen Traxxas lipo battery safely, always refer to the manufacturer’s guidelines. Most manufacturers will provide you with instructions on how to dispose of your swollen battery safely. Commonly, you can take it to a recycling center or hazardous waste facility.


As a Traxxas user, it’s crucial to understand the reasons why your lipo battery is swelling. Swelling batteries can cause permanent damage to your motor, charger, and speed controller.

To avoid such damage, you must follow the manufacturer’s guidelines, charging and storing your battery at the right temperature, avoiding overcharging, and discharging your battery before storing it for an extended period.

David Gaskill

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