New PB battery problems?

Discussion in 'Buying Tips and Advice' started by smartgirlglasse, Nov 11, 2005.

  1. smartgirlglasse macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Oct 21, 2005
    #1
    I just got my new PB, and I checked the battery power 2 days after receiving it:

    Battery Information:

    Battery Installed: Yes
    First low level warning: No
    Full Charge Capacity (mAh): 4644
    Remaining Capacity (mAh): 4578
    Amperage (mA): 0
    Voltage (mV): 12460
    Cycle Count: 1

    Any idea why it would lose so much of its charging capacity in the course of 48 hours? I "calibrated" the battery when I got it, as suggested in another threat--by draining it all and then recharging it.

    Any tips for avoiding battery loss?
     
  2. TheMonarch macrumors 65816

    TheMonarch

    Joined:
    May 6, 2005
    Location:
    Bay Area
    #2
    Don't worry too much. My battery went from 5400 to 4717 within a month or so... And it seems to have settled there. I think I got a bad cell or something. I don't know, but I called applecare, and they said that if it dips to 50% of its original capacity, that I'd get a new batt.

    Like 51% would be acceptable :rolleyes:



    It'll eventually settle, and decline at about the same rate as other batteries, and I would bother calling applecare just yet, I doubt I'd do much for you either.
     
  3. caveman_uk Guest

    caveman_uk

    Joined:
    Feb 17, 2003
    Location:
    Hitchin, Herts, UK
    #3
    Are you sure you calibrated it? You don't seem to have had your 'First Low Level Warning'
     
  4. smartgirlglasse thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Oct 21, 2005
    #4
    It's my understanding that the "low level warning" is something that Mac OS gives you when your battery is about to die for good. When I run a battery config on my old PB, it tells me I've never had a "low level warning," even though I've been through 500+ cycles.
     
  5. psendeavor macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Nov 12, 2005
    #5
    Be happy.
    My new hi-res PB's battery only has full charge capacity of 762 mAh remaining .... after three weeks. Think I'm going to call Applecare on Monday...

    I've seen others with a similar problem in various forums.

    (no, recycling or resetting the PMU didn' t work).

     
  6. mkrishnan Moderator emeritus

    mkrishnan

    Joined:
    Jan 9, 2004
    Location:
    Grand Rapids, MI, USA
    #6
    But how much battery life are you getting? Is the problem the "calibrated" reading, or battery life?

    FWIW, my system (two year old iBook) also claims to never have given the low level warning, which is consistent with what smartgirlglasse said. :)
     
  7. psendeavor macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Nov 12, 2005
    #7
    About 20 to 40 minutes, depending on screen brightness and HD access. Not enough for a brandnew hires 15" PB, I guess :(.

     
  8. mkrishnan Moderator emeritus

    mkrishnan

    Joined:
    Jan 9, 2004
    Location:
    Grand Rapids, MI, USA
    #8
    No.... certainly not..:(
     
  9. YunusEmre macrumors regular

    YunusEmre

    Joined:
    Nov 11, 2005
    Location:
    Santa Clara, CA
    #9
    I've just got my new 15" PB, this is what it shows:
    Battery Information:

    Battery Installed: Yes
    First low level warning: No
    Full Charge Capacity (mAh): 4370
    Remaining Capacity (mAh): 2930
    Amperage (mA): 2624
    Voltage (mV): 12171
    Cycle Count: 2

    I think the cycle count is 2 because I accidentaly unplugged the power before it finished charging. I have not done what folks call calibration yet. I'll try that soon.
     
  10. mkrishnan Moderator emeritus

    mkrishnan

    Joined:
    Jan 9, 2004
    Location:
    Grand Rapids, MI, USA
    #10
    Glasse, I'm still not clear on what's wrong. Is it that the capacity number is lower than what you expect for your model? Or are you concerned about the difference between the capacity and the current level? Macs don't actively charge their batteries unless they dip below 95%. That means that until the current number gets down to ~4400, the PB will not try to charge the battery. The battery level very slowly drains down from 100% to 95% even when it's plugged in, as a result of this, but that's normal and should be expected. It does that to *preserve* battery life.
     
  11. smartgirlglasse thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Oct 21, 2005
    #11
    My concern was that fully charged, the battery was 66 mAh less than it's initial "full charge capacity," after only one cycle. If it keeps that nonsense up, I'd get 70 cycles out of the darn thing!

    It's more just a paranoia based on the fact that, fully charged, by 12" PB shows a "remaining capacity" of around 2000, a far cry from its initial full charge capacity of 4200. I'm lucky to get an hour out of the battery, which really limits its portability (nothing like packing 2 extension cords for your trip to the neighborhood coffeeshop).

    I had heard that other new PB owners were having battery issues, so I was just looking to see what was up.
     
  12. live4ever macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Aug 13, 2003
    Location:
    Thunder Bay, ON
    #12
    I'm surprised my RevA 15" (1.25GHz from over 2 years ago) still gets about 2 hours down about from 2:45 when new.
     
  13. al3000 macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Aug 16, 2005
    Location:
    England
    #13
    Mine seems to be different

    Battery Installed: Yes
    First low level warning: No
    Full Charge Capacity (mAh): 3864
    Remaining Capacity (mAh): 3164
    Amperage (mA): -1235
    Voltage (mV): 11771
    Cycle Count: 4

    could anyone explain what this means...and are there any problems with it?
     
  14. SteveMcQ macrumors member

    Joined:
    Sep 5, 2005
    #14
    I'm sure this is an easy question, but I don't have my PB in front of me: How do you guys check the battery info like that?
     
  15. mkrishnan Moderator emeritus

    mkrishnan

    Joined:
    Jan 9, 2004
    Location:
    Grand Rapids, MI, USA
    #15
    It's in the power section of system profiler. Click the Apple menu, then "About this Mac," then "More info...." then Power under Hardware in Sys Profiler. :)
     
  16. airkarol macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Nov 12, 2005
    #16
    My battery :/

    Code:
     Battery Installed:	Yes
      First low level warning:	No
      Full Charge Capacity (mAh):	4279
      Remaining Capacity (mAh):	4125
      Amperage (mA):	0
      Voltage (mV):	12358
      Cycle Count:	74
     
    My PB is 7 months old, I dont remember what the original was, is my capacity okay?

    Also, my battery only charges until it says 96%. Any ideas on that?
     
  17. YunusEmre macrumors regular

    YunusEmre

    Joined:
    Nov 11, 2005
    Location:
    Santa Clara, CA
    #17
    when was the last time you calibrated your battery? If you have not done it for a while I suggest you try that.
     
  18. airkarol macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Nov 12, 2005
    #18
    I havn't done that for a few months haha... I'll get on that.
     
  19. SteveMcQ macrumors member

    Joined:
    Sep 5, 2005
    #19
    Curious bump, but what is an "acceptable" full charge capacity on a week old PB? I've done the whole calibration thing already and I'm down to 3776mAh already when it looks like most of you are in the mid to low 4ks.

    And what does the "First Low Level Warning" count mean exactly?

    Thanks.
     
  20. caveman_uk Guest

    caveman_uk

    Joined:
    Feb 17, 2003
    Location:
    Hitchin, Herts, UK
    #20
    Yeah, you're right. I was wrong. Mine says 'No' as well and I've definately calibrated it until the low battery warning comes on.

    My readings are

    Full Charge Capacity 4338
    Remaining Capacity 4034
    Cycle count 63 cycles

    My machine has been asleep for about 8 hours so it's a little bit less than fully charged.
     
  21. Spectrum macrumors 6502a

    Spectrum

    Joined:
    Mar 23, 2005
    Location:
    UK
    #21
    The first battery I got from Apple would charge to capacity in less than an hour, and then last for less than 30minutes. Even after two rounds of calibration.

    Then, while on the phone to Apple, I unplugged just to see, and suddenly I had back up to 4hours+ of expected time (it normally always said 45-50min).

    They sent me a new one anyway, and it works fine.

    Here are the stats of my new one - about 3 weeks old now I guess... (I never checked the old one - didn't know how)

    Battery Installed: Yes
    First low level warning: No
    Full Charge Capacity (mAh): 4483
    Remaining Capacity (mAh): 4283
    Amperage (mA): 643
    Voltage (mV): 12539
    Cycle Count: 9

    ---

    Interesting
     
  22. SteveMcQ macrumors member

    Joined:
    Sep 5, 2005
    #22
    ^^
     
  23. mkrishnan Moderator emeritus

    mkrishnan

    Joined:
    Jan 9, 2004
    Location:
    Grand Rapids, MI, USA
    #23
    Remember...the rated capacity of the batteries for the different PBs is different. From what I understand, PB batteries are rated at:

    12" = 50 Watt Hours = 4630 mAh
    15" = 50 Watt Hours = 4630 mAh
    17" = 58 Watt Hours = 5370 mAh

    I'm not 100% sure about these numbers -- the only place on Apple's site I can find rated capacity is in WH and is listed on the replacement battery pages of the Apple store. The batteries run at 10.8 VDC, so the mAh ratings come from solving P = I*V.

    Anyway, assuming that you have not used more than say 10-15 cycles during that week, and the battery has been charge cycled appropriately, and is calibrated, I think it's reasonably to expect at least 85% of this, when you factor in manufacturing tolerance, variability in measurement (it's normal for this measure to fluctuate by a few %), and the effect of the limited usage during that time period. So that would be about 3935 mAh for the two smaller batteries and 4564 mAh for the big one.

    That's just using sort of generally accepted numbers... I think that below 85% of rated functioning at purchase is considered defective in a lot of cases.... Does that sound reasonable? Does it help?
     
  24. SteveMcQ macrumors member

    Joined:
    Sep 5, 2005
    #24
    Actually, yes it does. Thanks.

    Now does Apple have some more clear-cut guidelines as far as what they define as a "defective" battery? Given your numbers, mine still falls below it considering I've only had it for a week and sparingly as well, keeping in mind I have calibrated it thus far. I wish I had checked the battery info when I first got it, but given my usage and time of ownership, the battery capacity already seems low to what others are getting.
     
  25. mkrishnan Moderator emeritus

    mkrishnan

    Joined:
    Jan 9, 2004
    Location:
    Grand Rapids, MI, USA
    #25
    Yeah, I saw your numbers. Latest rev PB, right? That seems very low from what you describe. I don't know if Apple publishes a guideline like they do for the iPod. What I would recommend doing is calling them....

    Hehehehe...bad customer-citizenship warning: when I got my first notebook, a Compaq, I installed some program that was extremely battery intensive and started getting only an hour off the battery. No easy measurement like this that I knew of then. I called and complained and got a new battery out of it...they didn't want the old one. Which I eventually learned had nothing wrong with it. Ooops. :D
     

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