preserving battery life

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by Americanloti, Feb 2, 2007.

  1. Americanloti macrumors member

    Joined:
    Mar 2, 2006
    #1
    Hello,

    I've just got my new super awesome MBP and I don't need to tell you how much I love it. I'm coming from a tiBook 1ghz and I remeber how I was impressed by the battery life. If I recall right it could make 4/5hours. Now I think it can handle 4 or 5 minutes at most and then it's dead, but you know it's 4 years old. Anyway, I'm sure that I misused the battery, meaning that I often charged it at half cycles and stuff like that. Now, I don't want to make the same mistake with my new toy and I'm here to hear what you guys suggest. Do you have any tips for preserving at best the battery life?
     
  2. bbergie macrumors regular

    bbergie

    Joined:
    Jul 3, 2006
    Location:
    Calgary
    #2
    I've been reading up on this topic of late. Here are some tips that I've discovered:Calibrating your battery at least once per month is a good habit. I think this is good for overall battery health, and calibration helps with the sensor to be more accurate with the provision of the battery's draining and charging status. I read as well that the ideal user of lithium-Ion batteries is someone who relies on the battery daily for short periods and charges it daily. The idea being to keep the juices flowing. I've also read that you should avoid fully draining the battery frequently, as these types of drains and recharges can be hard on the battery, and frequenty use like this will shorten the battery's life. Finally, keep your battery cool. :)

    Hope this helps.
     
  3. Americanloti thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Mar 2, 2006
    #3
    Thanks for the tips. I'm not sure what you mean by calibrating. Could be more specific?
     
  4. BSME macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Sep 8, 2006
    #4
    the procedure detailed in the manual that comes with the MacBook
     
  5. iW00t macrumors 68040

    iW00t

    Joined:
    Nov 7, 2006
    Location:
    Defenders of Apple Guild
    #5
    The best way to preserve your battery is to do what you see all those asian students do around campus. Hook your MBP to the power mains and remove the battery.
     
  6. daneoni macrumors G4

    daneoni

    Joined:
    Mar 24, 2006
    #6
    Thats fine in a PB but its risky on the MBP because part of the Logic Board is somewhat exposed.
     
  7. riddle macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jan 1, 2007
    Location:
    Austin, TX
    #7
    But doesn't calibrating the battery involve draining the battery?

    BBergie, I don't understand. The instructions at http://docs.info.apple.com/article.html?artnum=86284 say that to calibrate the battery you load it up fully, drain it until the machine goes to sleep (i.e., down to all but reserve power), and then load it up fully again. How is this consistent with your advice not to fully drain the battery? By "fully drain" do you mean exhausting even the reserve power, or that the risk comes not fully recharging after you run it down, or what? Thanks.

    I also note that calibrating the latest generation of batteries requires you to stay plugged in for two hours with the battery full and stay unplugged and asleep for five hours with the battery (nearly) empty. That's a pain -- I don't think I'd be able to do regular recalibration under those limitations.

    As for keeping the battery cool, I'd like to ask the engineers how in the hell you're supposed to do that in a Texas summer. :)
     
  8. Kamikaze macrumors member

    Joined:
    Oct 28, 2006
    Location:
    Denver, Colorado
    #8
    I have done everything possible and I have not been able to exceed 3:40 on my MBP. I have reached 5:05 with my MB. By comparison the GF's 12" iBook has gone 6:00.
    If you do not need the processing power I've been looking at CoolBook. I think their site is www.coolbook.se It basically undervolts the cpu, plus you have the ability to fix the cpu clock @ 1.0ghz. Check it out.
    Hope this helps.
     
  9. bbergie macrumors regular

    bbergie

    Joined:
    Jul 3, 2006
    Location:
    Calgary
    #9
    Greetings,

    When I stated "don't fully drain the battery frequently," I was no longer referring to calibrating; rather, I was suggesting that it's not good for the battery to be fully drained––or nearly fully drained––with regular use. Some people might think that to get the most of their battery, they shoud fully drain it every time, and then fully charge it. That's actually harder on the battery.

    As I said in my earlier comment, the ideal user is someone who commutes to work on a train, for example, and relies on their battery during the commute, and then they plug in and recharge while at their work desk.

    As for the instructions you left relative to calibrating the "latest batteries," I have to defer to your first-hand expertise on that. My computer, as you will note from my signature, is not the latest––and nor is its battery.

    I hope this is helpful.
     
  10. riddle macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jan 1, 2007
    Location:
    Austin, TX
    #10
    See the Apple doc for calibration details

    Thanks, Brett. To clarify, the bit about the "latest batteries" isn't from my personal experience, it's from the Apple doc at http://docs.info.apple.com/article.html?artnum=86284 . They give separate calibration instructions for the MacBook, MacBook Pro and selected G4s that include wait times which were not necessary for older G4s and iBooks.
     
  11. djinn macrumors 68000

    djinn

    Joined:
    Oct 4, 2003
    #11
    This is where the IBM Thinkpad wins the Award for battery maintenance. They have a program (power manager) that can drain the battery and charge it while plugged in. It can also tell you the health and notify you when its a good time to do maintenance.
     
  12. bbergie macrumors regular

    bbergie

    Joined:
    Jul 3, 2006
    Location:
    Calgary
    #12
    Ah, you did reference that above. I should have paid closer attention. :) And thanks for the link, riddle, since information from the source––apple––is the most authoritative.

    Regards,
     
  13. buffalo macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Jun 5, 2005
    Location:
    Colorado Springs / Ohio
    #13
    I use my MacBook mostly around home. Should I keep it plugged in when I'm near an outlet?
     

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