Dead Milwaukee Battery, might not be so dead afterall…

Posted by Dan on Dec 3, 2009 @ 4:05 PM

Several years ago, I bought a set of Milwaukee power tools. I love the tools, but one of the batteries seemed to die after a few years (but very little usage.) The batteries are like $80 and since I don't use the tools very often, I've never bothered replacing the one that seemed to be dead (since I have 2 batteries.)

However, today I came across a very cool tip.

Apparently these "dead" batteries are a known issue with Milwaukee and often the batteries aren't dead, but just need to be jump started. To awaken one of these dead batteries, place a standard 9-volt battery against the leads on your dead Milwuakee battery for 30 seconds (single lead on your Milwaukee is positive, the double lead is negative.)

Sure enough after doing this little tip, I was able to plug my battery in to the charger and it started charging it!

Categories: Potpourri


  • i have a lith ion 18v, when its charging the battery flashes red, while the charger is a constant red, it even turns green saying its fully charged. Im wondering if this is my issue since i didnt use the batteries in like 3 weeks. let me know what you think. Thanks a lot
  • @Cam:

    You can try it, it won't hurt anything. In my case the light just stayed a constant red, but it would never charge. I don't use the batteries a lot, so this happened after not using the battery in a few months (and then because I thought it was dead, I went a couple of years before trying this tip.)

    Doing this shouldn't harm the battery at all--there's not enough juice coming out to hurt the battery, but it appears there's enough to reset the battery's memory.
  • Wow- thank you for this. Both of my Milwaukee 18v batteries where dead. (I thought)
    They are both charged and running great. You just saved me at least $100.
    Thanks again-
  • it worked!!!
  • That is awesome! My battery is working again.
  • We lol this work on the V28 battery?
  • My Lithium-ion 18v batteries (2) have five slots that fit into the charger.
    I have the same propblem that Cam has with the charger showing red then
    green but no power in the batteries. Which slots do I use to jump with the
    9 volt?
  • Hi,

    I'm having the same problem with two identical batteries that came with my Milwaukee drill. They're 18-volt batteries and I'm examining them in hopes of performing this trick you're recommending. However, would it be possible for you to post a photo of your battery? Mine has no exposed metal "leads," or anything that would resemble something to which you could simply hold a 9-volt battery. My battery connects to the charger by sliding into a series of 5 plastic grooves. Any metal contact points are within the battery itself.
  • I had the same problem with two "Red lithium" 18v batteries: charger pretends to charge, turns green after a while indicating a full charge but batteries are still dead. The solution? New charger from Amazon for less than 30 bucks. Both batteries work flawlessly and I'm glad I don't have to go through the pain of warranty replacement, yet.
  • Hi
    same story with the battery and the five grooves.
    Just where do you place the 9 volt battery?
    Anyone there
  • Both my 3.0Ah batteries seemed to have packed in around the same time. I was using them outdoors in very cold damp weather. The charger was flashing between red and green which indicates broken battery. So I took them home and forgot about them for a fortnight or so then thought I would give them another try. They are not that old or used and both have now charged up fine. Anyone else had a similar problem with cold damp weather ?
  • Rubbish, no leads on Milwaukee batteries, they slot into the charger this is not possible
  • This will help you identify the leads on your 5-connector battery:

    It is basically the outer two slots. The one with the white sleeve on it is the ground. You can look at the video to understand the proper orientation. Or you can just unscrew the top and identify it by its sleeve.

    I plan to try it on mine, once I dig up a 9V battery. But I have no specific knowldge on whether this will work.

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