Another Battery Life/Cycles Thread

LemonPie

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Dec 2, 2009
19
0
Beirut, Lebanon
I'm a new mac user since August 2009 and love my MacBook Pro 15

As I tend to use it a lot for browsing, working, and also watching movies & series, I recharge the battery often.

I have read all the htreads on Battery Life and Cycles, and I was surprised to see some users who after 1 or 2 years, are barely at 100 cycles. I am already at 95 after 3 months use, which is almost as if I recharge my battery once every day

Do you like me, recharge your laptop everyday, and is it safe to leave it plugged even after the battery is 100% recharged (when i am watching a movie for example) in order not to have to recharge again?

Thank You,
M
 

Gabriel GR

macrumors 6502a
Jul 12, 2009
716
1
Athens, Greece
I'm a new mac user since August 2009 and love my MacBook Pro 15

As I tend to use it a lot for browsing, working, and also watching movies & series, I recharge the battery often.

I have read all the htreads on Battery Life and Cycles, and I was surprised to see some users who after 1 or 2 years, are barely at 100 cycles. I am already at 95 after 3 months use, which is almost as if I recharge my battery once every day

Do you like me, recharge your laptop everyday, and is it safe to leave it plugged even after the battery is 100% recharged (when i am watching a movie for example) in order not to have to recharge again?

Thank You,
M
At the office and home my mac is constantly plugged in power. I only work with the battery when I forget to plug the charger or I am in the couch, bed etc and I use around 5 cycles a week. It's a battery on a computer. If in 2 years it doesn't hold charge, you'll either get a new computer or pay 150 bucks and replace it...
 

LemonPie

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Dec 2, 2009
19
0
Beirut, Lebanon
Thanks Gabriel
My only concern would be that I read around that keeping the charger plugged for a long period of time even though the battery is fully charged isn't advisable...
 

GGJstudios

macrumors Westmere
May 16, 2008
44,360
701
Thanks Gabriel
My only concern would be that I read around that keeping the charger plugged for a long period of time even though the battery is fully charged isn't advisable...
What's not advisable is to run your MBP plugged in all the time. Running plugged in some of the time, and running on battery some of the time is good for it. As far as leaving it plugged in after it's charged, it's not a problem. It stops charging when it's full, so it can't "overcharge". I run with mine plugged in for 2-3 days at a time, then I run it on battery until it's almost drained. Be sure to calibrate your battery every month or two, so you have accurate readings of your battery condition.
 

LemonPie

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Dec 2, 2009
19
0
Beirut, Lebanon
Miles and Ayeying, I guess you are right, I have to stop being too anal and just enjoy my computer :D

GGJStudios, thanks for the advice. I've calibrated my battery just once already but will make sure to do that every couple of months

Miles, I enjoyed reading your review...I'm going to check around your website instead of actually doing some work!

Cheers,
M
 

applebook

macrumors 6502a
Jul 21, 2009
515
0
What's not advisable is to run your MBP plugged in all the time. Running plugged in some of the time, and running on battery some of the time is good for it. As far as leaving it plugged in after it's charged, it's not a problem. It stops charging when it's full, so it can't "overcharge". I run with mine plugged in for 2-3 days at a time, then I run it on battery until it's almost drained.
What you are doing is no advisable. Apple recommends that one calibrates the battery once "every two months." You are basically needlessly discharging it and raising the cycle count.

People should NOT run their MBs on battery unless they need to. Having it plugged in continuously for a week or longer is perfectly fine. In fact, this will save your from unnecessary waste of cycles.
 

GGJstudios

macrumors Westmere
May 16, 2008
44,360
701
What you are doing is no advisable. Apple recommends that one calibrates the battery once "every two months."
You need to go back and read what Apple says about battery care. What I'm doing is exactly what Apple recommends. I'm not calibrating it every few days. Running it on battery "until it's almost drained" (as I said) is NOT the same as calibrating the battery.
People should NOT run their MBs on battery unless they need to.
That is completely false. You should do some research before you spread misinformation.
For proper maintenance of a lithium-based battery, it’s important to keep the electrons in it moving occasionally. Apple does not recommend leaving your portable plugged in all the time. An ideal use would be a commuter who uses her MacBook Pro on the train, then plugs it in at the office to charge. This keeps the battery juices flowing. If on the other hand, you use a desktop computer at work, and save a notebook for infrequent travel, Apple recommends charging and discharging its battery at least once per month.
 

Max(IT)

Suspended
Dec 8, 2009
8,550
1,640
Italy
What you are doing is no advisable. Apple recommends that one calibrates the battery once "every two months." You are basically needlessly discharging it and raising the cycle count.

People should NOT run their MBs on battery unless they need to. Having it plugged in continuously for a week or longer is perfectly fine. In fact, this will save your from unnecessary waste of cycles.
Absolutely not! If you keep it plugged in all the time you're going to lose your battery in a very short time. The battery needs to work! At least a cycle per week
 

Max(IT)

Suspended
Dec 8, 2009
8,550
1,640
Italy

For proper maintenance of a lithium-based battery, it’s important to keep the electrons in it moving occasionally. Apple does not recommend leaving your portable plugged in all the time. An ideal use would be a commuter who uses her MacBook Pro on the train, then plugs it in at the office to charge. This keeps the battery juices flowing.


I think the statement above is clear enough to show who is wrong
 

-aggie-

macrumors P6
Jun 19, 2009
16,793
50
Where bunnies are welcome.
For proper maintenance of a lithium-based battery, it’s important to keep the electrons in it moving occasionally. Apple does not recommend leaving your portable plugged in all the time. An ideal use would be a commuter who uses her MacBook Pro on the train, then plugs it in at the office to charge. This keeps the battery juices flowing.


I think the statement above is clear enough to show who is wrong
What you wrote is exactly what you're supposed to do. I wished we could leave it plugged in all the time, but we can't. There have been numerous stories on here about people that ruined their batteries this way.
 

ayeying

macrumors 601
Dec 5, 2007
4,548
11
Yay Area, CA
What you are doing is no advisable. Apple recommends that one calibrates the battery once "every two months." You are basically needlessly discharging it and raising the cycle count.

People should NOT run their MBs on battery unless they need to. Having it plugged in continuously for a week or longer is perfectly fine. In fact, this will save your from unnecessary waste of cycles.
Wasted cycles aren't the only thing that kills a battery. Heat from the system, cells not being used, etc.

I'm almost reaching my 500 cycle mark in ~7 months and my battery still retains 91% health currently. It was only at 94-96% when I first got it.

And Apple recommends a calibration every "month" not two.
 

miles01110

macrumors Core
Jul 24, 2006
19,264
30
The Ivory Tower (I'm not coming down)
I think the statement above is clear enough to show who is wrong
Too bad I never claimed you can leave it plugged in all the time. You assert that if you leave it plugged in,

you're going to lose your battery in a very short time.
This is at best a dubious statement (unless you care to qualify "short") and at worst just another example of the idiocy and myth that pervades battery threads.
 

Max(IT)

Suspended
Dec 8, 2009
8,550
1,640
Italy
Too bad I never claimed you can leave it plugged in all the time. You assert that if you leave it plugged in,



This is at best a dubious statement (unless you care to qualify "short") and at worst just another example of the idiocy and myth that pervades battery threads.
It seems to me that you missed the "... Plugged in ALL THE TIME" of my statement.
A battery MUST work, and Apple is just saying that. So, as reported above, you don't have to keep your notebook plugged in all the time just to "spare charging cycles" (as someone suggested above).

And please, don't try to lecture me on how batteries work: I don't really need it.
 

Habitus

macrumors 6502a
Feb 26, 2009
606
0
Where ever my life takes me...
I'm a new mac user since August 2009 and love my MacBook Pro 15

As I tend to use it a lot for browsing, working, and also watching movies & series, I recharge the battery often.

I have read all the htreads on Battery Life and Cycles, and I was surprised to see some users who after 1 or 2 years, are barely at 100 cycles. I am already at 95 after 3 months use, which is almost as if I recharge my battery once every day

Do you like me, recharge your laptop everyday, and is it safe to leave it plugged even after the battery is 100% recharged (when i am watching a movie for example) in order not to have to recharge again?

Thank You,
M
I bought my 13" MBP the day they came out and my capacity is 96% with 18 cycles. Plug your Mac in when possible. You can always purchase a new battery when it cannot hold a charge.

Habitus
 

Nano2k

macrumors regular
Nov 6, 2009
109
0
Europe
Apple says that you should not leave your computer plugged in all the time because the battery needs to work every now and then as they explain.

Besides, keeping a LiPo (lithium polymer battery) charged at 100% for long periods of time is very bad. If the battery is stored charged at 100% it can get damaged pretty fast and heat increases the risk of damage. Damage = permanent loss of capacity.
You will notice that with any product that has lithium based batteries, the batteries are never fully charged when you buy the product, there is a good reason for this.

So the worst scenario is constantly plugged-in computer that gets hot because of heavy usage.

This means that a battery can break because it has too many cycles, but also if it is never used, you have to find a good balance.

One cycle a week at least sounds like a good balance to me.

There is plenty info about this stuff on Wikipedia, etc...
 

applebook

macrumors 6502a
Jul 21, 2009
515
0
You need to go back and read what Apple says about battery care. What I'm doing is exactly what Apple recommends. I'm not calibrating it every few days. Running it on battery "until it's almost drained" (as I said) is NOT the same as calibrating the battery.

That is completely false. You should do some research before you spread misinformation.

Pretty funny since you're the one spreading misinformation. I never said that your constant discharging and recharging was "calibrating" your batter.y, only that they were an "unnecessary waste of cycles." Learn to READ.

You said yourself that you almost drain your battery entirely every few days; this basically ensures that you add cycles to your battery when you do not NEED TO. Like APPLE RECOMMENDS, a battery needs to be calibrated only once a month or so.

Scenario 1 is FAR better than scenario 2:

1. Plugged in 95% of the time except when traveling or moving the laptop around. Not needlessly using the battery and increasing the cycles count. Using battery power when you are not near an outlet or do not have your adapter with you. Calibration once per month.

2. Draining the battery once every few days JUST because you think that this will somehow increase the battery's longevity.
 

applebook

macrumors 6502a
Jul 21, 2009
515
0
You will notice that with any product that has lithium based batteries, the batteries are never fully charged when you buy the product, there is a good reason for this.

This means that a battery can break because it has too many cycles, but also if it is never used, you have to find a good balance.

One cycle a week at least sounds like a good balance to me.
The main reason why batteries do not come fully charged is probably because they drain every so slightly even when not powered on. I agree with you that a balance is necessary. Plugging a battery in all the time is obviously not good, but discharging it and increasing cycle counts often is also (obviously) going to decrease the life of the battery.

Also, when your battery is plugged in, you are not using battery power anymore. The battery is not still be charged --notice that when you have a battery a 100%, it slowly, over a few days, drops a few % points even when you are plugged in?
 

All Taken

macrumors 6502a
Dec 28, 2009
780
0
UK
I have had my 13" Macbook Pro since August and I am at 202 cycles and 98% health. I don't give my Macbook Pro any special treatment, I use it when I need to with no concern for battery cycles, charging, running plugged in when fully charged etc etc.

Stop worrying and use your Macbook. How far could you take it? First the battery then the hard drive...

Relax
 

ayeying

macrumors 601
Dec 5, 2007
4,548
11
Yay Area, CA
The main reason why batteries do not come fully charged is probably because they drain every so slightly even when not powered on. I agree with you that a balance is necessary. Plugging a battery in all the time is obviously not good, but discharging it and increasing cycle counts often is also (obviously) going to decrease the life of the battery.

Also, when your battery is plugged in, you are not using battery power anymore. The battery is not still be charged --notice that when you have a battery a 100%, it slowly, over a few days, drops a few % points even when you are plugged in?
The laptop is a machine, not a living lifeform. Use the battery as you like, it really does not matter. You're not gonna get a prize for keeping the cycles low or getting a high cycle. However, using the battery tends to maintain a longer life than batteries that aren't getting used. (Look at some of the posts here, many battery failures occur under 300 cycles but they have a high age <12 Months).

In fact, if you don't want to waste battery "cycles", then don't buy a laptop. Buy a desktop, its cheaper and you won't need to worry.
 

miles01110

macrumors Core
Jul 24, 2006
19,264
30
The Ivory Tower (I'm not coming down)
Learn to READ.
I'll learn to read when (I guess I should say "if") you learn what you're actually talking about instead of copy/pasting from Apple.

Like APPLE RECOMMENDS, a battery needs to be calibrated only once a month or so.
Calibration has nothing to do with battery life. It has everything to do with what battery life is reported. Learn what you're actually talking about instead of copy/pasting from Apple.

Scenario 1 is FAR better than scenario 2:

1. Plugged in 95% of the time except when traveling or moving the laptop around. Not needlessly using the battery and increasing the cycles count. Using battery power when you are not near an outlet or do not have your adapter with you. Calibration once per month.
Really? Is it "far better"? How far is it? Can you offer the discussion anything other than broad generalizations, copy/pasted statements you don't know the meaning of, or plain old-fashioned misinformation? Learn what you're actually talking about instead of copy/pasting from Apple.

2. Draining the battery once every few days JUST because you think that this will somehow increase the battery's longevity.
You seem to be under the impression that I let my minimal concerns over battery health dictate how and when I go off mains. I can assure you this is incorrect; unlike many I'm much more concerned with getting my work done as I need to than possibly shelling out a whole $150 five years from now to get a new one.

To those who overworry about their battery: read ayeying's post.
To those who repeatedly spread misinformation and attempt to fearmonger: get over yourselves.