Power Up with Caution: The Truth About Third-Party Phone Charger Safety

Wondering if it’s safe to use a third-party cell phone charger? Here are several key factors to consider when opting to use an aftermarket charging cable.

To begin, not all third-party cell phone chargers are made equal. Some third-party phone chargers are high quality, certified, and safe to use. On the other hand, others are poorly made and definitely not safe to use. This might include $1-2 chargers you might find at gas stations and flea markets. When opting for an aftermarket charger we recommend choosing a reputable brand that is high-quality and passes all certifications.

Below we go in-depth about which third-party chargers are safe to use.

Survey: Are Cheap Third-Party Phone Chargers Safe?

With the increased popularity of cheap cell phone chargers, we surveyed 40 cell phone repair shops to see if it’s safe to use cheap aftermarket phone chargers. Cheap chargers may include off-brand and knockoff chargers that are commonly found in gas stations, convenience stores, and grocery stores. These chargers are typically priced very low and an easy alternative when your original charger stops working.

To see if these cheap gas station cell phone chargers are safe, we surveyed 40 cell phone repair shops. We asked repair shops if cheap aftermarket phone chargers such as those found in gas stations and grocery stores are safe. Shockingly, 39 of the 40 repair shops surveyed said that cheap knockoff chargers are not safe. Only 1 polled, said that off-brand chargers are safe and ok to use.

Survey: Are Cheap Aftermarket Phone Chargers Safe?Results

Based on this survey we can conclude that using cheap knockoff chargers for your cell phone is not a good idea nor is it safe. Phone repair shops have first-hand experience and see the consequences of using these poorly made chargers.

Why are Cheap Third-Party Chargers Bad?

Using cheap third-party cell phone chargers is not a good idea for a number of reasons.

  • Poor quality: Many cheap third-party chargers use low-quality components that rarely meet safety standards. These components can fail and cause the charger to overheat, catch fire and even explode. These chargers often damage your cell phone charging port, and battery and sometimes even completely kill your device.
  • Lack of certifications: Reputable cell phone chargers are often certified by organizations to make sure they meet all safety requirements. Cheap chargers you may find at the gas station or flea market do not have these certifications making it difficult to know if they are safe to use. For Apple products, the company introduced MFi which ensures they are Apple approved and certified to be safe.
  • Counterfeit: Many times cheap aftermarket cell phone chargers are counterfeit. They may look name brand but in reality, they are entirely fake. These fake knockoff chargers are made with poor-quality materials and can cause damage to your device. Additionally, these counterfeit chargers use trademarks and logos to mimic the genuine product which infringes on the brand’s intellectual property rights. You can identify counterfeit Apple chargers here.

Are Genuine Chargers Worth it?

Genuine chargers are worth the investment for a number of reasons. Genuine chargers are made to specifically work with your device and meet all manufacturer’s standards. Additionally, using a genuine charger can help prolong the lifespan of your cell phone battery and device. Cheap aftermarket chargers are usually not designed to work with your device and can reduce your phone’s lifespan and sometimes even damage it.

Genuine and name-brand chargers are usually more expensive than cheap third-party chargers but they are worth it in the long run. Name-brand and genuine chargers are always high quality and meet all safety requirements. Unlike, cheap chargers that hardly last for a few weeks, genuine chargers typically last much longer.

What Third-Party Chargers are Safe?

As mentioned previously, some third-party cell phone chargers are indeed safe to use. These chargers are high quality, meet all safety requirements and are MFi certified.

Some name-brand third-party certified chargers include the following:

Frequently Asked Questions: Cell Phone Charger Safety

Is it bad to use 3rd party iPhone chargers?

It is not bad to use 3rd party iPhone chargers as long as they are high quality and MFi certified.

Is it bad to use knockoff chargers?

We advise against using knockoff chargers as these chargers are typically low quality, can shorten the life span of your battery, and infringe on intellectual property rights.

Are Apple cables better than third-party?

Apple charging cables are not necessarily better than third-party charging cables. As long as the third-party cables are MFi certified you will have no issues.

Are cheap lightning cables safe?

Cheap lighting cables are typically not safe to use as they are made from poor-quality materials and do not meet safety requirements and certifications.

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