Better to let your iPhone completely die each time before charging?

Kayzle

macrumors member
Original poster
Jul 8, 2010
90
0
This might be an old wives tale, but I heard a long time ago its better to let your electronics completely die before charging them, is this true?
 

Knowimagination

macrumors 68020
Apr 6, 2010
2,042
905
a long time ago it was true, but as of now you can charge it any time you want.

You may want to fully discharge then recharge about once a month though to keep your indicator accurate.
 

iSaxon

macrumors 6502a
Jun 19, 2010
710
19
Pittsburgh, PA
The first time, yes. After that, once a month would suffice.

With new electronic devices, it doesn't really matter though.
 

dsm2gst

macrumors member
Jul 11, 2008
39
0
From the apple website they recommend to do the following:

For proper maintenance of a lithium-based battery, it’s important to keep the electrons in it moving occasionally. Be sure to go through at least one charge cycle per month (charging the battery to 100% and then completely running it down).
 

Kayzle

macrumors member
Original poster
Jul 8, 2010
90
0
From the apple website they recommend to do the following:

For proper maintenance of a lithium-based battery, it’s important to keep the electrons in it moving occasionally. Be sure to go through at least one charge cycle per month (charging the battery to 100% and then completely running it down).
perfect, thanks
 

NWI73

macrumors 6502a
Jun 22, 2010
826
0
Beyond the full cycle at least once a month, what's recommended?

I always feel like I should let my battery get down to less than 5% before I hit it with a full charge and I do that once a day under normal usage. I am tempted to charge it over night then once in the afternoon to keep my battery topped off but don't want to put it on the charger that much if it will hinder overall battery life/performance. (I know some batteries say they will sustain x amount of charges before they don't hold full 100% charge anymore).
 

TB07-NJ

macrumors 68020
Jul 7, 2008
2,324
135
FORMERLY NJ now FL
From the apple website they recommend to do the following:

For proper maintenance of a lithium-based battery, it’s important to keep the electrons in it moving occasionally. Be sure to go through at least one charge cycle per month (charging the battery to 100% and then completely running it down).

No wonder my phone constantly is jumping around on my desk. It's dem damned electrons runnin' wild all over the place!
 

Knowimagination

macrumors 68020
Apr 6, 2010
2,042
905
Beyond the full cycle at least once a month, what's recommended?

I always feel like I should let my battery get down to less than 5% before I hit it with a full charge and I do that once a day under normal usage. I am tempted to charge it over night then once in the afternoon to keep my battery topped off but don't want to put it on the charger that much if it will hinder overall battery life/performance. (I know some batteries say they will sustain x amount of charges before they don't hold full 100% charge anymore).
You can really charge it as much as you want. The cycles are only counted once for each full charge, so if you charge to 100% then drain to 80% and recharge that 80-100 is a 1/5th of a cycle not a full one.
 

NWI73

macrumors 6502a
Jun 22, 2010
826
0
You can really charge it as much as you want. The cycles are only counted once for each full charge, so if you charge to 100% then drain to 80% and recharge that 80-100 is a 1/5th of a cycle not a full one.
If true, good call. Thank you.
 

Knowimagination

macrumors 68020
Apr 6, 2010
2,042
905
If true, good call. Thank you.
here is an excerpt from the apple site on batteries.

apple.com/batteries said:
A charge cycle means using all of the battery’s power, but that doesn’t necessarily mean a single charge. For instance, you could listen to your iPod for a few hours one day, using half its power, and then recharge it fully. If you did the same thing the next day, it would count as one charge cycle, not two, so you may take several days to complete a cycle.
 

DiamondGCoupe

macrumors 6502
Nov 12, 2007
366
20
It's not best to let it run completely dead. Charge it from 5-10% that should be a good cycle. I always let it drain and charge it full 2-3 times once I get a new iPhone, after that it's never an issue. The battery will last far longer than the phone and certainly longer than most of us will keep it!
 

g35

macrumors 6502a
Dec 13, 2007
594
94
Is there any recommendation from battery experts about the first charge, or does it not matter?

eg. when I get a new phone, should I
a) start using and let it run down how much I normally would (about to 20%) or
b) should it be charged to 100% the first time, or
c) should it be drained all the way the first time, or
d) charged fully then drained fully once?

I know that once you're in the swing of things you just let it run down once or so per month and otherwise keep an intermediate charge if possible.
 

Knowimagination

macrumors 68020
Apr 6, 2010
2,042
905
Is there any recommendation from battery experts about the first charge, or does it not matter?

eg. when I get a new phone, should I
a) start using and let it run down how much I normally would (about to 20%) or
b) should it be charged to 100% the first time, or
c) should it be drained all the way the first time, or
d) charged fully then drained fully once?

I know that once you're in the swing of things you just let it run down once or so per month and otherwise keep an intermediate charge if possible.
Does not matter. The reason it used to be done was because there was a risk that if you didn't fully charge and discharge that the battery would think that its capacity was lower than it could have been resulting in a weaker battery.

With modern batteries you can charge it fully and begin using as normal, or you can just use it as normal and then recharge when needed straight out of the box.
 

Thrifty1

macrumors regular
Nov 21, 2009
213
26
I was told that a Mac or iPhone battery has a certain # of total charge - discharge cycles. Let's say 400 complete cycles for the life of the iPhone battery.

Let's say you use your phone from 7am - 7pm daily. If your battery drops by 25% each day and you plug it in from 7pm to 7am to recharge it every night, that uses up .25 of a cycle. In a year you would go through 365 * .25 cycles per day = 91.25 cycles a year. The battery would last about 4.38 years.

If you instead re-charge your phone after 3 days of use, it will lose 25% each day of normal use and it will also continue to discharge at night while on standby. The standby time is rated for 300 hours. 12 hours at night on standby = 4% of a full charge (12/300). Add this to the 25% of daily battery discharge and you get 29% discharge daily. 365 days *.29 cycle discharge daily = 105.85 cycles a year. The battery would last about 3.78 years.

If the above makes any sense, it appears re-charging your battery every night would have it last about .5 years longer. I'm assuming that the battery doesn't lose any "cycle life" when it is plugged in at night -- this may not be true.

I have a 3 year old original iPhone that still has excellent battery life. Over a year ago I purchased an external battery pack for it to "preserve" the internal battery as long as possible. My phone is usually in my work bag during the day so I leave it plugged into the external battery so the internal battery is not discharging.

As a comparison, I have a 13" MacBook Pro purchased in June 2009. I leave it plugged in whenever possible. It has a cycle count of only 53 after 13 months and a full charge capacity of 5443 mAh. My daughter has the same computer we purchased in Sept 2009. She uses hers unplugged more often and has a cycle count of 99 with a full charge capacity of 5413 after 10 months. Her battery will last about half as long as mine "in theory" as she is using about twice the cycles annually.

Bottom line -- I plug mine in whenever possible to stop / slow down the battery life decline.
 

-aggie-

macrumors P6
Jun 19, 2009
16,795
50
Where bunnies are welcome.
Is there any recommendation from battery experts about the first charge, or does it not matter?

eg. when I get a new phone, should I
a) start using and let it run down how much I normally would (about to 20%) or
b) should it be charged to 100% the first time, or
c) should it be drained all the way the first time, or
d) charged fully then drained fully once?

I know that once you're in the swing of things you just let it run down once or so per month and otherwise keep an intermediate charge if possible.
It doesn’t really matter. I do (a). After about a month I discharge and then charge.
 

pdhahn

macrumors member
Jul 2, 2010
59
0
Poconos, PA
I find the Battery Doctor app to be a helpful tool. For $0.99 it gives you good info on your battery and reminds you to do a full cycle once a month.
 
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