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How to charge Joy-Cons for Nintendo Switch

(Image credit: Nintendo)

So you've got a brand new Nintendo Switch? You're probably wondering how to charge Joy-Cons, the official name for the Nintendo Switch controllers. When playing in docked mode, the Nintendo Switch Joy-Cons can quickly run out of power if you're not careful, at which point you'll need to charge them. Since most video game controllers don't take batteries anymore (and haven't for a while), you'll need to know exactly how to charge Nintendo Switch Joy-Cons, along with how long Joy-Cons take to charge.

Make sure you check out our list of the best Nintendo Switch games if you're looking for something new to play!

How to charge Joy-Cons for Nintendo Switch

(Image credit: Nintendo)

The main way to charge Nintendo Switch Joy-Cons is to simply attach them to the console while it's charging by sliding them down from the top until they click into place either side of the device screen. This can be while it's in the dock, or in handheld mode but attached to the AC adapter. That's all you need to do in order to charge the Joy-Cons, although it is possible to charge them via another method.

If you don't want to attach them to the console itself, you can pick up a Joy-Con charging grip, sold separately. While it looks similar to the standard Joy-Con grip that comes with a new Nintendo Switch purchase, the charging grip means you can use the two Joy-Cons like a standard controller and charge them both simultaneously.

Nintendo Switch Joy-Con Charging Grip | $34.99 at
In the US, you can grab the official Nintendo Switch Joy-Con charging grip for around $35, a bargain price for a product that will cut out charging times.View Deal

Nintendo Switch Joy-Con Charging Grip | £24.99 at Amazon UK
Pick up an official Nintendo Switch Joy-Con Charging Grip in the UK for £24.99 at Amazon UK, so you can play and charge your Joy-Cons at the same time.View Deal

You can also pick up an external charging dock, which is extra useful if you have more than one pair of Joy-Cons.

ALLNice Nintendo Switch 4-in-1 Joy-Con Charging Dock | $16.99 at
This third-party Joy-Con dock allows you to charge up to four Joy-Cons at a time, ideal for anyone with multiple pairs.View Deal

PowerA Joy-Con Charging Station | £14.99 at Amazon UK
Officially licensed by Nintendo and produced by PowerA, this charging station also charges up to four Joy-Cons at a time.View Deal

How long do Joy-Cons take to charge?

In terms of the length of time it takes to charge Joy-Cons, a full charge from empty will take approximately three and a half hours, according to the official Nintendo site. Take note that if the console is not charging and the Joy-Cons are attached, they will only charge to about the halfway mark in order to reserve some console battery.

That's all there is to it – you don't need any cables to charge the Nintendo Switch Joy-Cons, they simply charge from being attached to the console if you don't buy any extra accessories. Make sure you always put the Switch in the dock and attach the Joy-Cons when you're not using it to keep them charged at all times and you're golden.

If you have got more than one pair of Joy-Cons, check out the best multiplayer Switch games to enjoy with friends and family!

One of the resident guide writers around these parts, give me a game and I will write every "how to" I possibly can or die trying. The youngest member of the GamesRadar team, I have an unhealthy addiction to Football Manager, shouting at the TV as Manchester United slowly descend from greatness, and playing Pokemon Go on the bus to and from the office.