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macmesser

macrumors 6502a
Original poster
Aug 13, 2012
921
198
Long Island, NY USA
I have a 2016 MB Pro which I purchased in 2017. Last year I started getting a service battery message, so I had it done at the Apple Store last November. The battery now appears completely dysfunctional after only 30 cycles; it completely fails to charge and this is visually signified with a red X. I get the "service battery" message as well, but the nominal capacity of the battery is indicated as basically new. The machine was running fine and this problem appeared immediately after upgrading the OS to latest Montery around a week ago. The computer is not abused and I followed best practices battery maintenance. What could have caused this? Upgrade breaking something? Some mechanical shock? It slipped off a bed some months ago but worked fine for a long time afterwards and with no apparent problems. I'm trying to decide if I should fix it again with the Apple Store for another $200.00 but I'm afraid of a firmware problem with the OS or maybe a cracked connection to the system board. Any ideas? Would mechanical damage be apparent to the repair techs? $200 for ten months of new battery life doesn't seem like good value. Any thoughts appreciated.
 

BanditoB

macrumors 6502
Feb 24, 2009
481
256
Chicago, IL
I would take it in and have Apple diagnose it. Since it's been less than a year, they might cover the cost if you ask nicely.

I had the original black plastic MacBook many years ago and the battery failed about two months past the warranty, but they replaced it for me anyway at no charge. That's just one of the reasons that I'm a big Apple fan. They have always treated me well and gone above and beyond to keep me as a satisfied customer.

If they won't take care of the situation for you, you can always replace the battery yourself. It is not difficult and most of the replacement batteries on Amazon include the tools necessary to do the job. I recently did this on a 2011 MacBook Pro that I had given to my sister-in-law to use quite a while back. She said the trackpad quit working and when I got the MacBook back, I found out why. The battery had failed and had swollen to the point that it pushed the trackpad up through the casing and you could no longer click it easily. I removed the bad battery and replaced it with one I purchased from Amazon for about $30.00. I was able to push the trackpad back into its normal position restoring its full functionality and with the new battery, the MacBook is now working just fine though it is, of course, no longer a speed demon.

Just look for a battery with good ratings on Amazon and avoid the very cheapest ones and I think you'll be fine, but still give Apple a try first and see if they'll take care of you.

It looks like the battery for your machine runs from about $54.00 - $80.00 depending on the specific model you have and whether its a 13" or 15" size, so considerably less that what Apple charges.
 
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macmesser

macrumors 6502a
Original poster
Aug 13, 2012
921
198
Long Island, NY USA
I would take it in and have Apple diagnose it. Since it's been less than a year, they might cover the cost if you ask nicely.

I had the original black plastic MacBook many years ago and the battery failed about two months past the warranty, but they replaced it for me anyway at no charge. That's just one of the reasons that I'm a big Apple fan. They have always treated me well and gone above and beyond to keep me as a satisfied customer.

If they won't take care of the situation for you, you can always replace the battery yourself. It is not difficult and most of the replacement batteries on Amazon include the tools necessary to do the job. I recently did this on a 2011 MacBook Pro that I had given to my sister-in-law to use quite a while back. She said the trackpad quit working and when I got the MacBook back, I found out why. The battery had failed and had swollen to the point that it pushed the trackpad up through the casing and you could no longer click it easily. I removed the bad battery and replaced it with one I purchased from Amazon for about $30.00. I was able to push the trackpad back into its normal position restoring its full functionality and with the new battery, the MacBook is now working just fine though it is, of course, no longer a speed demon.

Just look for a battery with good ratings on Amazon and avoid the very cheapest ones and I think you'll be fine, but still give Apple a try first and see if they'll take care of you.

It looks like the battery for your machine runs from about $54.00 - $80.00 depending on the specific model you have and whether its a 13" or 15" size, so considerably less that what Apple charges.
Thanks for tips. At the Apple Store I was told the repair warranty for vintage machines is three months and that I'd have to go for the $199 replacement. For some reason the keyboard and battery are attached in my model, so Apple will replace both for the standard $199. I would consider trying it myself only if I had complete instructions. Might be too involved, with the attached keyboard. Will have to look in to it.
 

macmesser

macrumors 6502a
Original poster
Aug 13, 2012
921
198
Long Island, NY USA
If the machine still suits your needs, a new battery is way cheaper than a new machine.
Agree but still on the fence. The notebook will still do what I need it to do. Considering new machine because this happened before. New machine would future-proof me for a while.
 

Fishrrman

macrumors Penryn
Feb 20, 2009
28,508
12,640
OP:

Are you in the USA?

If so, I'd take the $200 you would spend for a new battery, add 1,300 more, go to BestBuy and get the 2021 MPB 14" for the $1,599 price they're selling it for right now.

Then... either keep the old one around "as a spare" or sell it "as is" with the proviso that it needs a new battery (seems to me that a buyer would also be able to get one for $199 at the Apple Store...)
 
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Piplodocus

macrumors 6502a
Apr 2, 2008
509
504
If they replaced it less than a year ago and it's shagged already, go speak to them. That's clearly not right.
 
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macmesser

macrumors 6502a
Original poster
Aug 13, 2012
921
198
Long Island, NY USA
If they replaced it less than a year ago and it's shagged already, go speak to them. That's clearly not right.
Thanks. I did. They told me at the Genius Bar that, since it's a vintage machine, warranty on repairs is three months. I had no issues with it until the last upgrade, which the machine did automatically per settings. Battery had 30 cycles and actually indicated near new capacity except for the fact that it was busted. My suspicion is that the upgrade broke something in power management firmware. Seemed reasonable to tech but it was as if we were idly hypothesizing about dark matter. I assume they would be aware of any such issues or at least be aware that they were not. Very disappointing experience. I'm looking into replacing the battery myself but am deterred by the broken firmware possibility. I left the store feeling like a chump.
 

wilberforce

macrumors 68030
Aug 15, 2020
2,890
3,163
SF Bay Area
I replaced the battery myself on a 2015 MBP which wasn't too hard, but battery replacement on 2016 MBPs looks more involved, for example: (Don't know if this is your exact model)


Given the uncertain outcome, the age of the computer and the failure-prone butterfly keyboard, I would be inclined to call it quits, sorry to say.
 
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macmesser

macrumors 6502a
Original poster
Aug 13, 2012
921
198
Long Island, NY USA
I replaced the battery myself on a 2015 MBP which wasn't too hard, but battery replacement on 2016 MBPs looks more involved, for example: (Don't know if this is your exact model)


Given the uncertain outcome, the age of the computer and the failure-prone butterfly keyboard, I would be inclined to call it quits, sorry to say.
Thanks for input. Yeah, what I need to do. Glad I have a good backup. The new machines are so much improved that replacement will be relatively painless.
 
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