Vernier Software and Technology
Vernier Software & Technology
Tech Info Library

What do the LED lights on the LabQuest Charging Station signify?

The LabQuest Charging Station contains an LED light by each of the 4 charging ports. An LED light glows if current flowing to the port is equal to or greater than approximately 10 mA.

Note: There are different models of the LabQuest Charging Station. The initial design, available through October 2011, charges only the original LabQuest. The updated design, available after October 2011, can charge the original LabQuest, LabQuest 2, or LabQuest Stream (interface specific inserts may be needed). For specific details and to see photographs of the different models to note differences, see:

TIL 2634: Will my LabQuest Charging Station also work with the LabQuest 2 and LabQuest Stream?

Regardless of the model, the internal electronics work the same way. The LabQuest interface controls the charging process when on the LabQuest Charging Station. The LED light by a port glows when current flows to the device.

Specific charging examples

By turning off the LabQuest and placing the LabQuest in the LabQuest Charging Station, the following occurs:

  • If the battery requires full charging, the LabQuest draws current equal to or greater than 10 mA and lights the LED.
  • If the battery requires partial charging (to keep the battery full), the LabQuest draws current less than 10 mA and does not light the LED.

By turning on the LabQuest and placing the LabQuest in the LabQuest Charging Station, the following occurs:

  • The battery charges, but the LED light remains on.
    Note: The LabQuest Charging Station supports the simultaneous charging of 4 devices; however, best practice is to turn off each LabQuest or LabQuest 2 prior to charging to prevent a power overload condition on the charging station.

Even after the battery is done charging it will continue to draw a tiny bit of power to keep the battery full. Also on the LabQuest OS 2.1 and below, a tiny bit of power was being drawn by the bluetooth radio while the unit was suspended. Most of the time those two tiny bits of power will add up to less than 10mA, but some charging station ports are more sensitive than others and some batteries draw more current to keep full than others and some combinations of LabQuest 2 draw more current, so that the LED will flash approximately once a second. This was fixed in LabQuest OS 2.2, (it also results in slightly longer battery life in standby.) You can download the latest update to LabQuest 2 here: http://www.vernier.com/support/updates/labquest/labq2/

Troubleshooting Tips

If an LED light fails to turn on after you place LabQuest on the LabQuest Charging Station, it may indicate one of the following:

  • the LabQuest battery is already fully charged
  • the LabQuest is not fully seated in the port and requires a slight adjustment
  • the LabQuest battery needs to be replaced
  • the LabQuest requires service
  • the LabQuest Charging Station requires service (periodically, one port only may fail)

Battery Tips: Batteries fail slowly over time. You may note, for example, that a battery retains a charge for a shorter period of time after each charge until it fails to hold a charge at all. This is normal and should occur over a number of years. Periodically, however, batteries fail suddenly and completely and must be replaced.

Warranty: Vernier, Inc., provides a five (5) year warranty for both the LabQuest and the LabQuest Charging Station. Vernier, Inc., provides a one (1) year warranty for the LabQuest battery.

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