Owlet is a baby monitor brand known for producing monitors that track a baby’s vital signs via a monitoring device attached to an infant-sized sock.
If you’re a new parent considering Owlet for your monitoring needs, you probably have a lot of questions you’ll want to be answered before you decide if the purchase is worth it for you.
One of the most common questions when purchasing any new battery-operated device, and the one we’re answering today for Owlet is: how long will the batteries last?
Here’s the Battery Life on Owlet Baby Monitors:
The sock is battery-operated with an average battery life of 18 hours. Owlet baby monitoring systems consist of three components: a base, an optional camera, and a “Smart Sock.” The base and the camera are not battery operated and use power cables to function.
What Owlet Baby Monitors Have the Longest Battery Life?
From what we can tell, the Owlet brand sells a few variations of their sock-based monitoring system and does not offer more traditional baby monitors.
Every source we can find indicates an 18-hour battery life on the sock device, which seems to be the only battery-powered component of the monitoring kits Owlet offers.
Therefore, there is no Owlet model with the longest battery life, because all purchasable monitoring kits feature a sock with an 18-hour life and no other battery-powered equipment.
Notably, Owlet monitoring systems are designed to be interacted with through your smartphone rather than a standalone receiver unit like non-internet monitors might use.
Because of this, your Owlet monitoring setup will have an additional battery-powered device: your smartphone.
Obviously, we don’t know what kind of smartphone you have or what its battery life is, so we cannot offer any information in that regard, but it’s worth taking note of for your own research.
Read this in-depth blog here about the battery life of Kodak baby monitors.
How Long Do Batteries Typically Last on Baby Monitors?
Based on our research, the battery life of baby monitors can vary quite a bit, running anywhere from 10 to 48 hours. As always, there are a few caveats.
The reason this range is so wide is that baby monitors come in many shapes and sizes, and each category has a different average battery life.
Audio-only, radio-based monitors with no internet connectivity have the longest battery life and can last a full day or two of use on average.
The more “hi-tech” features you add, the shorter the battery life tends to be.
Video cameras require more power than audio devices, and “smart” features requiring an internet connection represent additional power draw as well.
“Smart” monitors like Owlet tend to fall in the 10-20 hour range, so Owlet’s 18-hour battery life is on-par or even above-average for this category, but low overall when compared to other categories.
So if you want longer battery life, you may need to consider moving to more “low-tech” monitoring options.
But if the smart-monitoring features Owlet and similar products offer are appealing to you, the “smart sock” has an excellent battery life for a “smart” device at 18 hours.
Are There Any Ways to Prolong the Battery Life?
As with just about any battery-operated device, there are a number of considerations that will affect the lifetime of a single charge.
Owlet recommends using the “smart sock” in a dark room when your baby is sleeping.
Using the sock when you don’t need to will obviously drain the battery life, and bright lights will interfere with the sock’s sensors and cause it to consume more power to compensate.
Distance from the base station also affects how fast the battery will exhaust its charge. The closer to you can get the base monitoring station to the sock, the longer it will last.
How Do I Know if my Owlet Baby Monitor Is Fully Charged?
When the “smart sock” is plugged into the base station, the station will glow white to indicate that it is charging the sock.
It would be natural to assume that, like many rechargeable battery-operated devices, the light would then turn off when the sock is fully charged.
However, we have found this information surprisingly difficult to come by, and Owlet’s information is frustratingly opaque on the matter; all they tell you is that it will glow white while charging.
This may be because Owlet intends for the user to keep the sock plugged in at all times when it is not being used to monitor your baby’s vitals; they recommend as much in the instructions.
Unfortunately, this may mean that you will never actually know when the sock is fully charged, you’re just supposed to keep it always plugged in when not in use.
Can Owlet Baby Monitors Work While Plugged In?
The Owlet “smart sock” activates and begins monitoring when it is unplugged from the charger.
This means it is impossible to use the sock when it is still plugged in and charging.
Owlet recommends keeping the sock plugged into the charger when not in use, and it will automatically activate and begin monitoring when unplugged.
How Long Does it Take to Charge Owlet Baby Monitors?
This is another question that we find frustratingly difficult to answer based on our research.
For the same reason that you may never know when your “smart sock” is done charging, you may never know exactly how long it takes to fully charge.
Once again, this is because Owlet expects you to simply keep the sock constantly plugged in when not in active use.
Owlet seems to take the stance that you do not need to know how long a full charge takes, or when it is done, because you should just leave it plugged in anyway.
That being said, while Owlet itself is not forthcoming in an answer, a third-party source indicates that a full charge should take about 90 minutes.
What Type of Batteries Do the Models Use?
Another case of frustrating opaqueness is the question of what type of batteries the “smart sock” actually uses.
Owlet posits that, when used correctly, you will not need to replace the batteries at all, and thus seems ill-inclined to give any specifics on the type of battery used.
Can You Replace the Batteries on Owlet Baby Monitors?
You cannot directly replace the batteries on Owlet systems, but you can purchase replacement parts for them, including the sensor unit which we believe to be the battery-operated part of the “smart sock.”
While the lack of a direct battery replacement option may be frustrating, the fact that you can replace a variety of individual parts in a piecemeal fashion does bode well for the long-term maintenance of your monitoring system.
Note that we are aware the link above will send you to the UK store for replacement parts; we were unable to find a US-based replacement parts store page and are uncertain if one exists.
When Should You Replace the Batteries?
According to Owlet, you should never need to replace the “smart sock” batteries as long as you use the product within recommended parameters.
While this is excellent news if true, the fact that Owlet does not offer battery replacement services is concerning, because if this prediction is incorrect, you will have to spend a considerable sum to replace the sock or the sensor unit.
Do Owlet Baby Monitors Always Beep When the Battery Is Low?
As far as we can tell, the Owlet monitoring base does not beep when the battery is low, nor does it even technically have a notification for a low or empty battery.
Instead, when the battery dies, the light on the monitoring base will glow blue to inform you that the sock is no longer connected.
This means you may not be notified in any way when the battery is about to die, and you’ll have to be looking at the light to notice when the battery dies completely.
Read our blog here about the battery life on BT baby monitors.