Can you leave a power bank on charge when not in use, or will this degrade the battery cells?

Yes you can. But should you?  The power bank should stop charging when full. However, what if it doesn’t?
Degradation will occur naturally due to passage of time but will occur much faster as you use the power bank and the life cycle declines.
However, I’m concerned about leaving electronic gadgets plugged into a power source when not in use. Few of the reasons are:
  1. Risk of fire. What if the power bank is not as good/safe as you think? What if it has become partly damaged due to wear and tear? What if there’s a sudden upsurge of input current? In summary, what if an electrical mishap somewhere causes an explosion/fire. There are many reported cases of such incidents on the internet that remain unexplained. There are also several reasons why even a top quality smartphone or power bank can overheat/explode.
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  1. Risk of radiation. Electronic gadgets emit radiation when in use or being charged; or overcharged - as may be the case following on from 1. above. It may not be much but it is a risk nonetheless.
  2. Cost - financial and wasted energy. Though immaterial but, if its on, its drawing/draining energy and accumulating cost. Might be tiny for an individual but at a national level, if you scale up and think of the cumulative wasted energy that could have been used elsewhere, you may agree its best to unplug. Additionally, there’s also social, emotional and replacement cost if any of the risks materialises.
I’d rather err on the side of caution and unplug.
Dave Ebi is a Most Viewed Power Bank Writer on Quora. Join HetoGrow on FacebookTwitterInstagram G+ or LinkedIn

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