Battery barely lasting on refurbished 13" Macbook Pro

petrucci666

macrumors 6502a
Original poster
Apr 30, 2009
706
4
Los Angeles, CA
Hi all,


I have a MacBook Pro (13-inch, 2016, Four Thunderbolt 3 Ports) that I bought refurbished from Apple.com.

It's in great condition, no issues with it but the battery is absolutely terrible from what I'm used to with my previous Macs. This one is getting barely 2 hours when not plugged in, and I'm not using anything that's super-intensive on the machine (no Photoshop, Logic etc.).

Battery condition says it's normal, but this is really disappointing. I paid close to $2,200 for this laptop and have to have it plugged in most of the time.

I fear going to the Genius Bar will not help me as they've gotten worse over the years and aren't really helpful. On top of that, I bought it from the refurbished Apple Store and they tend to not help with those machines. (I've been to the Genius Bar before for keyboard issues and they refused to help, the guy basically told me to use the dust remover spray...)

Any recommendations?
 

ActionableMango

macrumors G3
Sep 21, 2010
9,513
6,772
Hi all,
I fear going to the Genius Bar will not help me as they've gotten worse over the years and aren't really helpful. On top of that, I bought it from the refurbished Apple Store and they tend to not help with those machines. (I've been to the Genius Bar before for keyboard issues and they refused to help, the guy basically told me to use the dust remover spray...)
The response you got about the keyboard was Apple's standard (and pathetic) answer to a flawed design. That didn't have anything to do with you buying a refurb. Refurbs from the Apple Store have the exact same warranty and support as new. If your Genius Bar is saying otherwise, then they are out of line.

As for recommendations, there aren't really a lot of options here. Take it to the Genius Bar and try to get the battery replaced. If they won't do it for free, pay for it or live with a 2-hour battery.
 

yukari

macrumors 6502a
Jun 29, 2010
546
283
I would insist on them replacing the battery. If they don’t, or take it up the chain. If that fails call the customer service. They are usually better than idiots at the Genius Bar.
 

dotzero123

macrumors 6502
Sep 3, 2018
303
200
Philadelphia Suburbs
I find that customer service varies from store to store. I'd chat w/ apple support and take it up the chain (as Yukari said) all the way to the payment source. No way that an Apple Certified Refurb shouldn't be covered unless they have some kind of battery disclaimer.
 

Painter2002

macrumors 65816
May 9, 2017
1,088
771
Austin, TX
Hi all,


I have a MacBook Pro (13-inch, 2016, Four Thunderbolt 3 Ports) that I bought refurbished from Apple.com.

It's in great condition, no issues with it but the battery is absolutely terrible from what I'm used to with my previous Macs. This one is getting barely 2 hours when not plugged in, and I'm not using anything that's super-intensive on the machine (no Photoshop, Logic etc.).

Battery condition says it's normal, but this is really disappointing. I paid close to $2,200 for this laptop and have to have it plugged in most of the time.

I fear going to the Genius Bar will not help me as they've gotten worse over the years and aren't really helpful. On top of that, I bought it from the refurbished Apple Store and they tend to not help with those machines. (I've been to the Genius Bar before for keyboard issues and they refused to help, the guy basically told me to use the dust remover spray...)

Any recommendations?
In order to help us give you better recommendations, I have a few questions:

1). How long have you had the computer?
2). Did you purchase AppleCare or AppleCare+
3). You say you don't use anything taxing on the machine such as Photoshop or LogicPro, but do you use Chrome or other apps that may drain more battery? Or stream a lot of videos?
4). Which version of MacOS are you using?

Depending on your answers to the above, there are different options that could be suggested. Obviously 2 hours of battery life is excessively short, but there are many factors that can be impacted.

Also, I have a refurbished 2017 MBP wTB that I purchased from Apple's refurb site, and I have never been treated any different than owning a brand new device in my dealings with the Genius Bar. It depends on the location and day and associate who helps you, but typically I have been treated well bringing my Apple devices in when when they had issues (which hasn't been often).
 
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ignatius345

macrumors 68030
Aug 20, 2015
2,684
3,615
3). You say you don't use anything taxing on the machine such as Photoshop or LogicPro, but do you use Chrome or other apps that may drain more battery? Or stream a lot of videos?
Yeah, this. Defintely open up Activity Monitor and check the Energy and CPU sections and see if anything is running amok. I'd also try creating another user account on the machine, rebooting and logging into only that "vanilla" account and seeing if the battery situation is any better. If it is, that means something installed and running in your main account is likely causing the issue.

If that doesn't help, I'd reset the SMC. It's responsible for battery management, among other things. Apple's instructions are here: https://support.apple.com/en-us/HT201295

If neither of these steps helps, you might have more luck with the Genius Bar earlier in the day when they're less busy? In my experience they tend to go more into triage mode when it's super busy.

If it's been less than a year it's under warranty -- longer if you bought AppleCare, of course -- and you should definitely press them on it.

I'd also keep hassling them about the keyboard. It's a known defect at this point and there's even a warranty extension program in place for it.
 
Last edited:
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petrucci666

macrumors 6502a
Original poster
Apr 30, 2009
706
4
Los Angeles, CA
In order to help us give you better recommendations, I have a few questions:

1). How long have you had the computer?
2). Did you purchase AppleCare or AppleCare+
3). You say you don't use anything taxing on the machine such as Photoshop or LogicPro, but do you use Chrome or other apps that may drain more battery? Or stream a lot of videos?
4). Which version of MacOS are you using?

Depending on your answers to the above, there are different options that could be suggested. Obviously 2 hours of battery life is excessively short, but there are many factors that can be impacted.

Also, I have a refurbished 2017 MBP wTB that I purchased from Apple's refurb site, and I have never been treated any different than owning a brand new device in my dealings with the Genius Bar. It depends on the location and day and associate who helps you, but typically I have been treated well bringing my Apple devices in when when they had issues (which hasn't been often).
Thanks for the questions!


Just got off the phone with Apple Support and they determined battery is faulty so I'm sending it in for repair. It is still covered under Apple Warranty.

One thing that stuck out to me (which was $hitty) was that they said the repair might cost me $129, because the battery is depleted. I've had the machine for about 6 months, but it is still their fault for installing a battery that doesn't work properly. I don't see how this is my fault and that I might have to pay for it...Apple is just becoming a ******** company overall.
 
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iMacDragon

macrumors 68000
Oct 18, 2008
1,860
350
UK
One thing that stuck out to me (which was $hitty) was that they said the repair might cost me $129, because the battery is depleted. I've had the machine for about 6 months, but it is still their fault for installing a battery that doesn't work properly. I don't see how this is my fault and that I might have to pay for it...Apple is just becoming a ******** company overall.
I've never heard of them trying to charge for a battery repair in warranty..
 
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AppleHaterLover

macrumors 68020
Jun 15, 2018
2,036
2,040
99% of the time this happens it's software.

Check on Activity Monitor what software is using more energy. Get Intel Power Gadget and see if the processor's on Turbo Boost continously. Then solve the issue.
 
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California

macrumors 68040
Aug 21, 2004
3,766
42
Thanks for the questions!


Just got off the phone with Apple Support and they determined battery is faulty so I'm sending it in for repair. It is still covered under Apple Warranty.

One thing that stuck out to me (which was $hitty) was that they said the repair might cost me $129, because the battery is depleted. I've had the machine for about 6 months, but it is still their fault for installing a battery that doesn't work properly. I don't see how this is my fault and that I might have to pay for it...Apple is just becoming a ******** company overall.
Refurbed Macs have same warranty as regular Macs with a one year warranty. Just make two backups of your hard drive (better than one) and go get a new machine. They will most likely replace the entire machine. Not sure what you are so upset about since you haven't done anything but call them.

Apple has been more than helpful to me with two or three entire iPad replacements just under the warranty date, and have always been this helpful with machines that are clearly under warranty when customer damage is not the true problem....

IOW, don't sweat it, Apple will replace a faulty battery and you'll probably get a new machine.
 

adrianlondon

macrumors 68020
Nov 28, 2013
2,237
2,031
Switzerland
How many cycles has the battery had?

https://support.apple.com/en-gb/HT201585

I've a late-2013 Retina pro and around 1200 cycles. Battery sometimes lasts a few hours and sometimes shuts the computer down despite appearing to have over 60% charge left. I'll get it replaced at some point. Despite the laptop being 5 years old, it's running (Mojave) very well. The screen coating is coming off at the edges, which is a common issue (and I'm outside of the 4 year free replacement window) but that's just aesthetics as it's only around the bezels.
 

Rocko99991

macrumors 6502a
Jul 25, 2017
972
1,220
Thanks for the questions!


Just got off the phone with Apple Support and they determined battery is faulty so I'm sending it in for repair. It is still covered under Apple Warranty.

One thing that stuck out to me (which was $hitty) was that they said the repair might cost me $129, because the battery is depleted. I've had the machine for about 6 months, but it is still their fault for installing a battery that doesn't work properly. I don't see how this is my fault and that I might have to pay for it...Apple is just becoming a ******** company overall.
How did they determine that over the phone?
 

Painter2002

macrumors 65816
May 9, 2017
1,088
771
Austin, TX
Thanks for the questions!


Just got off the phone with Apple Support and they determined battery is faulty so I'm sending it in for repair. It is still covered under Apple Warranty.

One thing that stuck out to me (which was $hitty) was that they said the repair might cost me $129, because the battery is depleted. I've had the machine for about 6 months, but it is still their fault for installing a battery that doesn't work properly. I don't see how this is my fault and that I might have to pay for it...Apple is just becoming a ******** company overall.
If you’ve purchased the computer less than a year ago, then you are still covered under the 1 manufacturer warranty. They won’t charge you anything, and if they try to, I’d ask for a manager right away. If it has been deemed a faulty battery, that’s something that will be covered by the one year warranty.

Best of luck! I know this is a bad experience, but Apple can be a good company. Not everyone agrees with that, but sometimes we just get unlucky with the device we get. No company is perfect, but if you are nice to the but firm (on the issue being covered by warranty) with the rep that is helping they should take care of you in the end.

On the bright side you’ll also get a new keyboard with getting the battery replaced ;)
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How did they determine that over the phone?
They may have identified that through a system diagnostics, which they can send you to execute during on an Apple Care phone call.
 
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