Regular readers know I am nothing, if not frugal. But I’m not penny-wise and pound foolish, as they say.
For the longest time I refused to invest the twenty bucks (it’s priced at $19.99 as of this writing) in Amazon Kindle 9W PowerFast Adapter for Accelerated Charging, because I didn’t think it made sense to buy yet another charger when my drawers are already littered with the many that have come with the various gadgets my kids and I have accumulated over recent years.
But it was always a bit of a frustration, having to babysit my charging Kindle Fire and check on it frequently to see when its battery was back up to full, so as to avoid overcharging it.
And with a standard charger, it would take hours to refill that little battery indicator in the menu bar. Even so, I thought, “How much faster could the PowerFast really be?” The answer is, A LOT.
They Don’t Call It PowerFast For Nothing
In the product description for Amazon Kindle 9W PowerFast Adapter for Accelerated Charging it says:
• Official Amazon 9W, 1.8A adapter charges Kindle Fire HD 8.9″ in under 5 hours, Kindle Fire HD 7″ in under 4 hours, and Kindle Fire in under 3 hours
• Also the approved charger for Kindle Paperwhite and Kindle; charges Kindle Paperwhite in 4 hours or less and Kindle in 3 hours or less
• Optimized for Kindle tablets: PowerFast is a 9W charger and will charge your Kindle tablets faster than the white 5W Kindle charger will
I know those are the official, lab-tested specs, but it seems like my Fires charge much faster than the stated timeframes. I rarely let them get lower than 50% on battery drain, true. But my Kindle Fire (non-HD model) goes from 50% to 100% in under an hour and my 2nd generation Kindle Fire HD goes from 50% to 100% in less than 45 minutes—and that’s with me using the tablet while it’s charging.
Before, using one of my generic chargers, it would take around three hours or longer for the non-HD Fire to go from 50% – 100%, and up to five hours for the 2nd generation Fire HD.
Also, neither tablet would recharge if I used it with the generic charger plugged in; the charger provided power, but not charging because it wasn’t powerful enough to do both simultaneously.
Full disclosure: I got my first PowerFast for free: when the charger that came with my 2nd generation Fire turned out to be defective, Amazon replaced it with a PowerFast. The difference is like night and day, and I will never go back to using generic chargers with my Fires. I’ve bought two more PowerFast adapters for my other Fires—note that you must provide your own USB cable, but you should already have one of those lying around from whatever you’re currently using to charge your Fire.
I only wish I’d tried it sooner!