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User guide

Safety details

The BBC micro:bit is fun and simple to use. However, it’s also an exposed board with all the electrical parts on display. It’s been designed this way so you can see how the electronics are assembled, but this does mean there’s a small risk that the parts can be damaged easily and overheat.

The safety guidance below will help you to use your micro:bit safely. We suggest you retain this information for future reference and share it with your students if you are a teacher.

Safety warnings

  1. Always keep your BBC micro:bit in the anti-static bag when not in use. It's good practice for students to earth themselves before handling it.
  2. Please handle your BBC micro:bit by its edges. This minimises the risk of damage through an electrostatic discharge.
  3. Please use the battery pack and the USB lead provided to power your micro:bit. Do not use portable battery chargers or USB charging ports (often marked with a lightning bolt or 'SS'), to power your micro:bit. Using these may damage your micro:bit and stop it working properly.
  4. Please do not attempt to keep using faulty micro:bits. If a school-issued micro:bit develops a fault, contact us at support@microbit.org immediately.
  5. The maximum current safely supplied to an external circuit using the 3V pin on the edge connector is 100mA. Please make sure this limit is not exceeded.
  6. Please do not store or use your BBC micro:bit in extremely hot or cold environments.
  7. Do not place any metal objects across the printed circuits on the board as this can cause a short circuit damaging your BBC micro:bit. This can cause risk of burn or fire.
  8. Do not use your BBC micro:bit in water or with wet hands.
  9. Do not leave your BBC micro:bit plugged into a computer or any other device unsupervised.
  10. Please avoid handling the BBC micro:bit circuit board while plugged into a power supply.
  11. All peripherals (for example: USB cable, battery holder, sensors) used with your BBC micro:bit should comply with the relevant standards and should be marked accordingly
  12. Connecting your BBC micro:bit to any unapproved peripherals could damage your BBC micro:bit
  13. Please do not leave your BBC micro:bit within reach of children under 8 years of age.
  14. Please operate your BBC micro:bit in a well ventilated room
  15. To remove the battery pack, pinch the connector with your fingers. Do not remove by pulling the wires.

Battery warnings

  • Do not try to charge normal (non-rechargeable) batteries
  • Please do not mix different types of batteries or mix new and used batteries
  • Please use batteries of the same or equivalent type as those recommended
  • Please insert batteries the correct way round (with the correct polarity)
  • Please remove spent batteries from the battery holder
  • Do not short-circuit the battery supply terminals, for example by placing a metal object across the terminals
  • Only use Zinc or Alkaline batteries with your BBC micro:bit
  • Please do not use rechargeable batteries