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Canon LC-E5 battery charger contact problem
Since there doesn't appear to be any information on the web about this, I'm just putting this post up here to get it into search engines and see if anyone else is having this problem. The LC-E5 battery charger for my Canon Rebel XSi stopped working sometime last year. The charger is a small single unit with 'flip-out' plug prongs (no cord). When my charger stopped working, I'd plug it into the wall and the charging light would come on for a second, then turn off.
Jiggling the prongs made it work (for a couple more weeks at least), which indicated that the problem was with the electrical contacts inside that were supposed to connect with the plug prongs. After that temporary solution didn't work anymore, I ended up opening the casing to see what was wrong. The contacts are two small metal fins that use weak spring tension to keep in electrical contact with the prongs. Over time, these fins had bent back far enough that they weren't making contact. Once I had the case open, I could re-bend the fins back into shape so that they resumed proper contact. But eventually, the problem would come back after one or two chargings.
Since being without a charger is not an option (I use my camera almost daily), and new ones from Canon cost about $60, I had to come up with a solution. I ended up permanently cutting the charger's casing partially open, so that I could adjust the fins whenever they stopped making contact with the prongs (do this when the unit is unplugged, of course!) - which was invariably every time I needed to use it. I eventually got tired of this, so my final solution was to remove the prongs altogether, hard-wiring an old lamp cord and plug to the contacts. A pretty extreme measure, but one that works. In the above photo, I just twisted the stripped wire ends securely around the metal fins and soldered them in place. I used a set of wire ties to secure the lamp cord to the casing so that the cord wouldn't pull away from the contacts.
I was surprised a charger could fail so miserably at such a simple point. I'm curious if other Canon DSLR users have had LC-E5 battery chargers fail. If you're here from a search query, maybe you could try my solution of hardwiring a cord (like a lamp cord or an extension cord with a standard plug) to the contacts. Let me know if it solved the problem!
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