Apple requirements for battery replacement?

darkmatter343

macrumors regular
Original poster
Sep 18, 2017
237
165
Toronto, Canada
I picked up a 2012 13" Retina Pro for cheap from a friend. The battery only has 179 charge cycles, but it's not lasting long for what I use it for, so I've been thinking about having it replaced. It was a backup laptop for my friend, and for me, my only use is terminal (ssh / programming), and safari with 4-5 tabs. The issue is I'm only getting about 3-4hrs tops... and this is with the brightness set less than 50%. For a battery with only 179 cycles, I expected 6+ hrs using terminal and safari. (No youtube or Netflix either).

So my question is, can I pay the Battery Service fee to have it replaced? Or will Apple refuse until the battery is failing? The other issue is that the keys are worn with a lot of wear and although they all work fine, I know the battery/top case comes with the new keyboard. I'm just not clear if Apple replaces if you pay, or if they only replace if they decide you need it (and you pay). Thanks.

Screen Shot 2018-09-26 at 8.12.21 PM.png
 

darkmatter343

macrumors regular
Original poster
Sep 18, 2017
237
165
Toronto, Canada
They'll replace it if you pay.
Ok thanks. I'm asking because I read somewhere Apple was running diagnostics on your battery, and if it was still in a "normal/good" state, and in my case reporting 95%, they would refuse battery service. Which doesn't make sense if you're willing to pay the service fee... but if they will replace regardless then good :)
 

Audit13

macrumors 603
Apr 19, 2017
5,301
1,342
Toronto, Ontario, Canada
Maybe it depends on the Apple store?

Since the battery is at 96%, replacing the battery is unlikely to get you 6 hours. I used to have a mid-2012 non-retina and got about 4.5 when new.

I think using an SSD and increasing ram would help to conserve energy.
 

AppleHaterLover

macrumors 68020
Jun 15, 2018
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2,040
Maybe it depends on the Apple store?

Since the battery is at 96%, replacing the battery is unlikely to get you 6 hours. I used to have a mid-2012 non-retina and got about 4.5 when new.

I think using an SSD and increasing ram would help to conserve energy.
It's a Retina MBP, rated at 7 hours.

However the battery on the pre-2016 Pros is HORRIBLE. I'd expect to get 4-5 hours tops doing what you're doing.

You could have it exchanged, of course, due to age. But I would do this mostly as a precaution since your computer may become obsolete at any second now.
 
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darkmatter343

macrumors regular
Original poster
Sep 18, 2017
237
165
Toronto, Canada
Maybe it depends on the Apple store?

Since the battery is at 96%, replacing the battery is unlikely to get you 6 hours. I used to have a mid-2012 non-retina and got about 4.5 when new.

I think using an SSD and increasing ram would help to conserve energy.
The Retina's only use SSD, PCIe if I'm not mistaken, Ram however is 8GB soldered so that's staying at 8GB. I believe the advertised battery life was 8hrs when these were new, possibly even 10hrs? And From what I understand, that 8hrs, is 8hrs of continuous WiFI / Video playback... I'm using SSH in Terminal with 3-4 tabs open in Safari, those tabs being on Static non media pages. And with the brightness set to 40% most days inside, the battery might be reporting 95% life left, and in good health, but I think it's 5+ yr age has worn it down.
 

darkmatter343

macrumors regular
Original poster
Sep 18, 2017
237
165
Toronto, Canada
It's a Retina MBP, rated at 7 hours.

However the battery on the pre-2016 Pros is HORRIBLE. I'd expect to get 4-5 hours tops doing what you're doing.

You could have it exchanged, of course, due to age. But I would do this mostly as a precaution since your computer may become obsolete at any second now.
This is my concern, with the laptop being 5yrs old, it's only a matter of time before the battery's won't be available. And since the laptop is in otherwise immaculate condition, (except the wear on the keys), I think the cost to replace the battery/top case is worth it. Get another 2yrs out of this. Also, the hinges are still awesome, stiff as my grandpa's joints :)
 

AppleHaterLover

macrumors 68020
Jun 15, 2018
2,036
2,040
This is my concern, with the laptop being 5yrs old, it's only a matter of time before the battery's won't be available. And since the laptop is in otherwise immaculate condition, (except the wear on the keys), I think the cost to replace the battery/top case is worth it. Get another 2yrs out of this. Also, the hinges are still awesome, stiff as my grandpa's joints :)
Yeah it's a very good laptop even today. Probabaly 80% of the 2015 they sold until very recently.
 

iMacDragon

macrumors 68000
Oct 18, 2008
1,861
350
UK
I never got much more than 4-5 hours on my 2012 retina either ( 15" admittedly ), so honestly, unless the battery percentage is decreasing in a non linear fashion, or doing sudden shut downs, it's probably still in good condition and a replacement is unlikely to make a big difference.
 

darkmatter343

macrumors regular
Original poster
Sep 18, 2017
237
165
Toronto, Canada
I never got much more than 4-5 hours on my 2012 retina either ( 15" admittedly ), so honestly, unless the battery percentage is decreasing in a non linear fashion, or doing sudden shut downs, it's probably still in good condition and a replacement is unlikely to make a big difference.
Understandably even when new, I know the battery life advertised is to be taken with a pinch of salt. With what I do, and 179 cycles on the battery, I was expecting at least 5hrs. If I played netflix or youtube, then ok maybe 3hrs. I'm no expert on how batteries work but I feel like it's age and sitting un-used for long periods has worn it down more then the charge cycles. It was my friends backup laptop and it saw long periods (months) of no use. But the other thing I get with the battery and is new keyboard, so it's worth the fee :) Those 13" Retina's are still amazing laptops, so hopefully I can get another few years out of it.
 

nerowolfe19

macrumors member
Aug 16, 2018
93
34
2012 15" rMBP here. Replaced battery couple of months ago with a $60 DIY (Husan). Usually Turbo boost is disabled, dGPU defective and by default always disabled. File Vault on. Spotlight on. iClould off. Dashboard, Widgets and Notifications alll off. I get ~7hrs of youtube video playback (1080p) running Safari with no extensions enabled and 50% brightness. ~11hrs if I do my usual skim pdf reading with wifi off.

I'd monitor CPU usage. I'm running Sierra and Safari consumes 15% of CPU power when running aforementioned youtube video test. Same with latest version of VLC. Nets ~15% CPU usage while playing back standard 1080p H264 MP4 format with similar battery life on a single charge.

I think you're on the lower side of normal and could use a new battery if nothing else is consuming CPU power and your OS is setup and updated like it should.

There're also some router settings that could affect battery life like Beacon Interval and DTIM, by as much as ~15%. If you don't do lots of roaming, might be worth chaning to maximum number allowed that doesn't sacrifice performance much. I set Beacon Interval to 1000ms, default is 100ms. Gives me about 10% increase in battery life when WIFI isn't turned off. Worth checking out.
 

Fishrrman

macrumors Core
Feb 20, 2009
19,459
6,757
I believe the Apple Store genius bar will replace it for about $200.
Is that worth it to you?

Be sure that you get a firm quote before you hand it over, and that the price quoted includes labor as well!
 
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