How many times can a 5000mAh rated power bank charge a phone?

How many times can a 5000mAh rated power bank charge a phone?
How many times can a 5000mAh rated power bank charge a phone

At first glance, one might think that you simply divide the charging battery’s capacity with that of the gadget that’s being charged. Unfortunately, it’s not so easy.

The Brick power bank is 5000 mAh, which is the unit of charge, not the unit of energy. Two electronic gadgets with lithium-ion batteries can have the same battery mAh, but the energy can be vastly different.

Factors affecting the charging efficiency

There’s a couple of factors regarding the charging efficiency of a power bank, from the battery’s different efficiency factors, to the battery quality of the phone that’s being charged.

The charging efficiency of the device that’s being charged and the power bank

The charging efficiency is the ratio between the energy consumed by the charging process and the energy saved by the battery. This can be affected on both ends, the phone battery and the battery pack, and the energy lost has a significant impact on how many times a phone can be charged with a power bank.

How does the cable length affect charging efficiency?

Cable length can affect charging efficiency, but it’s not really applicable for powerbanks. Voltage drop occurs for cable lengths of around 15 meters, while Brick’s cables are less than 15cm long. In other words, cable efficiency of Brick power banks is 100%.

What is the chemical efficiency of a battery cell

Rechargable lithium-ion batteries degrade over time, not only through usage but through natural processes as well. For example, temperatures below 0 degrees will have a negative effect on the battery.

Calculating how many times a 5000mAh-rated power bank can charge a phone

Let’s make some assumptions about the battery cells to make a more precise calculation:

  • An iPhone 12’s battery is a 3.7 V (nominal) 2815 mAh lithium-ion cell
  • The Brick 5000mAh power bank’s cell also uses 3.7V
  • The boosting efficiency of the power bank is 85% (output)
  • The charging efficiency of the iPhone 12 is 85% (input)
  • Cable efficiency is 100% (Brick’s cables are less than 15cm long)
  • The chemical efficiency of the battery cell charging is approximately 100%

To get the result we first calculate the energy of each battery, then divide Brick’s power bank’s efficient energy of the phone's battery, and lastly multiply with the efficient coefficient.

Brick’s power bank energy: 5000mAh *3.7V = 18.5 Watt-hours

iPhone battery cell energy: 2815mAh * 3.7V = 10.4 Watt-hours

Efficient coefficient: input * output => 0.85*0.85 = 0.7225

Charges: 18.5/10.4 * 0.7225 = ~1.3 times

A Brick power bank will fully charge an iPhone 12 about 1.3 times.

Do you want to understand how many times a Brick power bank can charge another device? Use our Charging Capacity Calculator.

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