Continuous tracking of essential items like keys, wallets, purses, and like is a super handy feature of AirTags. But if that battery dies, you’re out of luck! Don’t worry; AirTags uses CR2032 coin cell batteries that keep your tracking experience smooth and seamless. This standard battery type also provides 1 year of uninterrupted power supply guarantee.
Besides its core features, the concerns are: how do you know when to replace the battery? While purchasing a new battery, what specifications should you consider? Which brands provide optimal performance and value for your money? If you do not know, let’s discuss:
Overview of AirTags Battery type
AirTags features batteries that range from long-lasting to disposable. It uses a standard, replaceable lithium CR2032 coin cell battery, which can last over a year before needing replacement.
Getting started with the AirTag battery is straightforward. Simply use a coin edge or similarly shaped tool to twist off the stainless steel rear cover of the AirTag. This exposes the CR2032 battery. To swap it out, remove the depleted battery and install a fresh one with the positive terminal facing upwards. Subsequently, refasten the cover by twisting it back into position.
However, the users may encounter problems not knowing when to replace the battery before it dies and difficulty removing the rear cover if it’s too tight.
The first problem can be resolved when the AirTags play an audible alert of low battery, a sign to swap in a fresh CR2032 battery, while the second issue can be fixed just by using a soft pry tool. This prevents scratching the finish. If the cover is still stuck, applying heat from a hairdryer can help loosen the adhesive.
So, don’t let a dead battery stop you from finding lost items. Read this guide for pro tips on monitoring battery life, replacing AirTag batteries, and maximizing each charge.
What Type of Battery Do AirTags Use?
The AirTag’s power source is a replaceable CR2032 coin cell battery that users can swap out. This is a prevalent type of flat, round lithium cell battery that provides a stable power supply in a small form factor.
Some key specs on the CR2032 battery:
- Diameter: 20mm
- Height: 3.2mm
- Voltage: 3V
- Capacity: 220mAh
The compact size and efficiency of the CR2032 make it well-suited for small electronics like remote key fobs, watches, calculators, and AirTags. A single CR2032 battery can power an AirTag for over a year of regular use before needing replacement.
Benefits of the CR2032 Battery in AirTags
There are a few specific advantages to Apple choosing the CR2032 for AirTags:
Small and Light
At just 3.2mm thick and weighing around 3 grams, the CR2032 takes up very little space and adds minimal weight to AirTags. This is important for keeping the trackers compact and easily attached to items.
The CR2032 battery’s annual energy depletion level is minimal, losing less than 1 percent of its power. This allows them to maintain control for long periods without use, unlike many other lithium batteries.
Wide Temperature Operation
CR2032 batteries can operate in temperatures from -30°C to 60°C. AirTags can, therefore, be used in extremely cold or hot environments without the battery failing.
The coin cell shape of CR2032 batteries allows for a straightforward AirTags construction and easy battery replacement by users.
As a ubiquitous battery used in many gadgets, CR2032 cells are inexpensive, selling for $0.50 to $2 per battery.
Overall, the CR2032 hits the sweet spot of compact size, reliable power, and low cost for an item finder like the AirTag.
How Long Do AirTag Batteries Last?
Actual battery life will vary based on how frequently the AirTag is used. Under normal usage conditions, Apple estimates each CR2032 battery should last over a year before replacement is needed.
Here are some factors that can impact battery life:
- Number of searches – More frequent location requests to pinpoint the AirTag will drain the battery faster. Infrequent use extends life.
- Separation distance – AirTags are meant to be kept close to the user. The farther away they are, the more battery power is needed to connect.
- Temperature – Very cold temperatures can reduce battery performance. Using AirTag in average ambient temperatures will give the best battery life.
- Age – As with all batteries, capacity decreases over time from chemical changes. Older AirTag batteries may only last for a short time.
Following Apple’s battery recommendations, like replacing after 1 year and keeping AirTag in your typical locations, will provide around 12+ months of runtime.
How to Check an AirTag’s Battery Level
AirTags do not have a battery level indicator display directly on the device. Instead, battery status can be checked through the Find My app on an iPhone or iPad paired with the AirTag.
To check an AirTag’s battery level:
- Open the Find My app.
- Tap on the Items tab.
- select the particular AirTag that you aim to inspect the current battery status of
- On the next screen, the battery status will display, showing a full green battery for a high charge or a low red battery if it’s nearly depleted.
The percentage of battery remaining will also be shown below the visual indicator. Checking battery levels periodically lets you know when a battery is running low and should be replaced soon.
When to Replace the AirTag Battery
Apple recommends replacing the AirTag battery when it reaches low levels – typically once per year. It’s a good idea to be proactive and swap the battery before it is fully drained, as the AirTag will become unresponsive when the battery dies completely.
Here are signs it’s time for a new AirTag battery:
- The Find My app shows a red low battery warning
- The AirTag’s sound is weaker or more distorted
- You are no longer getting notifications when the AirTag is separated
- The light on top of the AirTag no longer illuminates
Ideally, you’ll notice the low battery alert in the Find My app first. But the other symptoms mean the battery is nearly depleted. Replace ASAP so the AirTag can resume operation.
Only use a fresh CR2032 battery from a reputable brand when swapping in a new battery to maximize life and performance.
Steps to Substituting the Battery in an AirTag
The battery-exchanging process of AirTag is rapid and straightforward, complete in just a few minutes. Here are the steps:
What You’ll Need
- Fresh CR2032 3V battery
- Plastic pry tool or small screwdriver
- Hold the AirTag with the metal side facing down and the CR2032 logo facing up. Wedge the edge of the pry tool into the slight recess along the outside rim.
- Gently twist the tool to pry open the battery door. Don’t force it – the door should pop off with moderate pressure.
- Remove the old CR2032 battery by tilting the AirTag. The battery should drop out on its own. If stuck, lightly tap the AirTag to dislodge it.
- Fit the fresh CR2032 battery, ensuring its positive + side is aligned to face upward.
- Press the battery door securely back into place by hand until it clicks.
Once closed back up, the green LED on the AirTag will flash a few times to indicate it is powered on and working again. The battery level will also be displayed in the Find My app.
And that’s it – the AirTag is ready to use with up to 1 year of battery life! “It is essential to get rid of used batteries in an environmentally responsible manner.
Other Coin Cell Batteries in AirTags
Apple recommends explicitly only using a genuine CR2032 battery in AirTags. Other coin cell batteries with different voltages or dimensions could damage the AirTag or cause errors.
Some other coin cell battery types like CR1632, CR2450, or LR44 may physically fit inside an AirTag if forced, but they should not be used:
- CR1632 – This battery is the same size as a CR2032 but only 1.5V, so it may not provide sufficient power to the AirTag components.
- CR2450 – At 24mm diameter, this battery is too large and could get stuck or damage the AirTag housing.
- LR44 – LR44 cells are 1.5V alkaline rather than 3V lithium, operating differently than intended for AirTags.
Sticking with a 3V CR2032, as Apple prescribes, is the safest option to avoid issues and get a full year of optimal battery life from your AirTags.
Use of Rechargeable Batteries in AirTags
Rechargeable CR2032 batteries exist, but Apple does not recommend using them in AirTags.
Rechargeable CR2032s operate at a lower peak voltage of around 2.0V – 2.4V. This may not reliably power the AirTag electronics and wireless modules. Rechargeable coin cell performance is also more impacted by temperature extremes.
The battery in an AirTag is not intended to be recharged repeatedly like a smartphone. The AirTag lacks any charging circuitry or port.
For the longevity and consistency of a single-use primary CR2032 lithium battery, reusable rechargeable batteries are not as well suited for AirTags. Stick with standard CR2032 replacements.
Best Practices for AirTag Battery
To maximize your AirTag battery lifespan and performance, keep these usage tips in mind:
- Only use new CR2032 batteries from reputable brands
- Check battery level every few months in the Find My app
- Proactively replace the battery once per year or when low
- Store spare batteries properly in a superb, dry location
- Dispose of used batteries promptly at recycling centers
- Avoid exposing AirTags to temperature extremes
- Test AirTag sound and light when installing a new battery
- Never force a swollen or damaged battery into an AirTag
This best practice advice will help ensure your AirTags are powered up and ready to locate your valuables when needed.
Key Takeaways on AirTag Battery Type
- AirTags use one common CR2032 coin cell battery
- Battery life is 1+ year with regular use
- Check the battery level in Find My app and replace it when low
- Only use fresh CR2032 batteries – do not use rechargeable or other sizes
- User-replaceable – pry open the cover and insert a new battery
- Recycle old batteries properly when depleted
Knowing the right AirTags battery type specifies and keeps your Apple AirTags powered up and ready to find your items when misplaced. Check the battery periodically and swap a new CR2032 annually for peak performance.
James Wilson is a seasoned tech enthusiast with a passion for all things Apple. With years of experience troubleshooting and fixing iPhone issues, he brings a wealth of knowledge to “My Tech Simply.” James’s dedication to helping iPhone users find simple and effective solutions shines through in his articles.