How Long Does the Battery Last in a Portable Borescope?

by | Jan 18, 2021 | News

Borescopes are used for a multitude of applications in different areas. They are utilized when performing engine inspections at mechanic workshops. Similarly, they may also be used to perform pipe inspections in remote locations.

This latter application would normally be difficult to perform, as borescopes require a power source to function. Luckily, most of the borescope models available today run on batteries. This enables technicians and other workers to carry out in-depth inspections in a variety of settings, such as in remote areas.

Similar to other electronic devices, the battery on the borescope enables the device to be used on-the-go for a limited length of time before it runs out of power. You may be wondering how long the battery on a borescope lasts. Let’s examine the average battery life on a portable borescope, and which factors influence it.

Types of Borescope Batteries

Before we look at battery life, it’s important to understand what types of batteries borescopes use. The main battery types used in these devices are:

  • Lithium Ion
  • Alkaline
  • Zinc-Carbon
  • Nickel-Cadmium

Each of these battery types offer a different battery life. For example, lithium batteries are generally much more expensive than alkaline ones. However, they also tend to last much longer.

Alkaline batteries have a higher energy density than zinc-carbon batteries, which makes them useful for powering borescopes in remote situations. Nickel-Cadmium batteries generally have low energy density, but are useful for devices that require high power.

How Long Does the Battery on a Borescope Last?

The battery life of a borescope can vary depending on how the device is used. This can make it difficult to gauge what the actual battery life of the device will be when you use it for your own applications.

The iRis DVR X is rated to have a battery life of up to 6 hours. This is on the higher side for a borescope, and can be explained by the fact that it runs on a rechargeable Lithium Ion battery.

Another borescope model, USAVS4-4-1500, has a battery life of 4 hours.

The model USAF300 also has a 4 hour battery life. However, this borescope runs on AA batteries. This means you could potentially use this device for as long as you wish, if you have more AA batteries on-hand.   This proves to be a good option for many users as they do not have to wait for the batteries to charge.   However, for those that are more environmentally conscience this is not a viable option.

What Factors Influence Battery Life on a Borescope?

The battery life for each borescope mentioned above describes the maximum operation time under ideal usage conditions. In reality, the battery life for these devices may be less than advertised. There are many different reasons why this may be the case.

LCD Size

Most portable borescopes feature a display mounted on the device. These displays can be of different sizes, which can affect the device’s power consumption. We can assume that two different borescopes that feature the same size of battery but different LCD sizes will also differ in battery life. In this scenario, the borescope with the smaller LCD should have a longer battery life.

Screen Brightness

The brightness of the LCD display will also affect the borescope’s battery life. Many borescope models allow you to adjust the brightness of the LCD display during use. If you are viewing the LCD under direct sunlight, you may need to turn the brightness up to see the image displayed clearly. However, this may result in greater power consumption and a reduction in battery life.

LED Brightness

Most borescope models come with LEDs on their probes. These LEDs help illuminate the dark spaces the borescope is inspecting. It’s not uncommon for these devices to possess up to 6 LEDs on their probes. Each of these LEDs contributes to the device’s power consumption.

Some models even allow you to adjust the brightness of the LED to fit the operation conditions. If you are inspecting a dark but wide space, you may need to turn the brightness of the LEDs up. However, this results in greater power consumption, and a reduction in battery life.

Powering up the Device

Borescopes are essentially digital cameras, where the camera portion is connected by a long cable. Like cameras they perform many image adjustment functions when the device is powered on. As a result, simply turning on the device uses a fair amount of battery power. If you are using the borescope to perform a series of inspections on different parts, you may need to turn the device on or off multiple times. Doing this frequently can drain the battery.

Taking Images and Videos

Borescopes with image capture and video recording capabilities may also feature higher power consumption. These devices may require energy to capture images and videos, and write them onto their memory card or internal memory.

Temperature Conditions

Temperature conditions can influence the operation time of a borescope significantly. A general rule of thumb states that cold temperatures increase the internal resistance of batteries, and lower their capacity. For this reason, it’s not uncommon for a borescope battery that lasts 4 hours at room temperature conditions to function for only 2-3 hours at temperatures below freezing.

Many of the above mentioned power usage factors can be controlled or changed by users. However, you might not be able to change the temperature of the environment the borescope is being used in. This is especially true for remote applications such as inspecting oil pipes in the Alaskan tundra, or checking a vehicle engine outdoors in the middle of winter.

Where Can I Purchase a Borescope With a Good Battery Life?

If you are interested in purchasing a borescope with a good battery life, you should look to a reliable retailer such as USA Borescopes. We offer many different types of borescopes, including the iRis DVR X which features a 6 hour battery life. Get in touch with our experts to learn which borescopes fit your needs the best.