How to Charge Your Samsung Galaxy S 5 and Manage Battery Life - dummies

How to Charge Your Samsung Galaxy S 5 and Manage Battery Life

By Bill Hughes

Although you probably don’t have to plug your Samsung Galaxy S 5 phone into an outlet right away, here’s a handy rule: The first time you do plug it in, allow it to charge overnight.

You’ll hear all kinds of “battery lore” left over from earlier battery technologies. For example, lithium-ion (Li-ion) batteries don’t have a “memory” (a bad thing for a battery) as nickel-cadmium (NiCad) batteries did. And the Samsung Galaxy S 5 does use Li-ion batteries. That means that you don’t have make sure the battery fully discharges before you recharge it.

Your phone comes with a two-piece battery charger (cable and the transformer).

The cable has two ends: one end that plugs into the phone, and the other that’s a standard USB connector. The phone end is a small connector called a mini USB 3.0 that is used on some recent Samsung devices and is becoming the standard for charging cellphones and other small electronics — and for connecting them to computers.


To charge the phone, you have two choices:

  • Plug the transformer into a wall socket and then plug the cable’s USB plug into the USB receptacle in the transformer.

  • Plug the USB on the cable into a USB port on your PC.

Then you plug the small end of the cable into the phone. To get there, you may remove the cover over the multipurpose jack. Remove the cover from the left side. The cover will dangle from the phone from a connector on the right side.


Be careful to not break this connector. If it breaks you can easily lose the cover, which is necessary to prevent water and dust from damaging your phone.

If your phone is Off when you’re charging the battery, an image of a battery appears onscreen for a moment. The green portion of the battery indicates the amount of charge within the battery. You can get the image to reappear with a quick press of the Power button. This image tells you the status of the battery without your having to turn on the phone.

If your phone is On, you see a small battery icon at the top of the screen showing how much charge is in the phone’s battery. When the battery in the phone is fully charged, it vibrates to let you know that it’s done charging and that you should unplug the phone and charger.

It takes only a few hours to go from a dead battery to a fully charged battery. Other than the first time you charge the phone, you don’t need to wait for the battery to be fully charged. You can partially recharge and run if you want.

In addition to the transformer and USB 3.0 cable that come with the phone, you have other optional charging tools:

  • Travel USB charger: If you already have a USB travel charger, you can leave the transformer at home. This accessory will run you about $15. You still need your cable, although any USB-to-micro USB cable should work.

  • Car charger: You can buy a charger with a USB port that plugs into the power socket/cigarette lighter in a car. This is convenient if you spend a lot of time in your car. The list price is $30, but you can get the real Samsung car charger for less at some online stores.

  • Photocell or fuel-cell charger: Several companies make products that can charge your phone. Some of these products use photovoltaic cells to transform light into power. As long as there is a USB port (the female part of the USB), all you need is your cable. These chargers can cost from $40 to $100 on up.

Li-ion batteries do not like extreme heat. A warm room is one thing, but if you leave your phone on the dashboard all day in Phoenix during the summer, your battery will die an untimely and permanent death. If your phone is with you, and you can stand the heat, your battery will be fine.