I think I need a new battery

venom600

macrumors 6502a
Original poster
Mar 23, 2003
807
446
Los Angeles, CA
My computer sits on my desk most of the time. I unplug it about once a week to cycle the battery, but for the most part it doesn't move all that often. It's just about two years old now and about a month ago I took it to a business meeting and noticed it didn't sit flat anymore. It was slightly off, but i figured it was nothing and put it out of my mind.

My office is very dusty so every few months the computer starts to run hot and i take the bottom cover off and blow the dust out. When i took it off, I noticed that the battery (all four of the cells) is puffy. So much so that couldn't even get the clips in the middle of the bottom cover to snap. I noticed once i had the cover back on that it is slightly warped where the battery is putting pressure on it.

What i am asking is, has anyone experienced this on a computer that is so relatively new? The battery monitor app I downloaded still shows it as good and it still holds a full charge. I've made an appointment with the Apple Store for Sunday, but i'm almost wondering if i voided the warranty even opening the case at all.
 

Another Day

macrumors regular
Jan 18, 2017
122
78
Get it replaced ASAP.

It's a safety hazard and can ruin your machine if it gets more swollen.
 

DeltaMac

macrumors G3
Jul 30, 2003
9,534
2,303
Delaware
I see that you mis-counted the number of battery cells. There's six :D
All appear to have a nice amount of swelling.
If your number of charge cycles is still pretty low, Apple sometimes will replace the battery. All you can do is ask!

Unless you caused some damage, opening the case just for occasional cleaning shouldn't be an issue.
(Opening the case didn't cause your battery cells to swell like that. It did that without any help from you! )
 

tubeexperience

macrumors 68040
Feb 17, 2016
3,192
3,881
That right there is a fire hazard.

You should get it replaced right away and insist that Apple do it for free.
 

ZapNZs

macrumors 68020
Jan 23, 2017
2,310
1,150
If possible, don't use or plug the system in until you get it serviced (this can, in some cases, make the issue worse.) Apple will probably replace the top case free of charge (possibly even more components), as this happening to a younger battery indicates a possible defect with the battery and/or the charging system (no way for any of us to say this with certainty, tho.) Take your chargers with you to have them tested. The swelling occurs as a means of containment and, in some cases, to prevent rapid disassembly, which can be pretty nasty with LiCo cells.
 

Fishrrman

macrumors P6
Feb 20, 2009
17,194
5,543
You're in Los Angeles -- probably close to a brick-n-mortar Apple Store.

DON'T WAIT -- take it to them TODAY (or at the earliest possible opportunity).

You didn't tell us WHICH MacBook that is and I can't tell by looking at it.
But if it's not that old, they should offer you a replacement battery immediately.
 
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udontno

macrumors 6502
Jul 19, 2011
301
117
VA, USA
You're in Los Angeles -- probably close to a brick-n-mortar Apple Store.

DON'T WAIT -- take it to them TODAY (or at the earliest possible opportunity).

You didn't tell us WHICH MacBook that is and I can't tell by looking at it.
But if it's not that old, they should offer you a replacement battery immediately.
Based on the OP's signature, I think it is this one: 15" rMBP (Mid 2015). So not all that old.
 

venom600

macrumors 6502a
Original poster
Mar 23, 2003
807
446
Los Angeles, CA
Thanks for the advice guys. I was just on the phone with Apple and there's no appointment available at a local store until Sunday. They advised that I don't use the machine until they look at it, so I've shut it down and put it in a case in the garage where it can't cause any significant damage if it decides to explode. It's a 2015 rMBP that is just about two years old now, so still under applecare.
 

vjobs

macrumors regular
Nov 23, 2013
106
31
Amsterdam, Netherlands
That battery should be replaced free of charge. Even with expired warranty. Yes, an aged battery may have decreased battery capacity. But a battery should never swell up with high safety hazards.
 
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ZapNZs

macrumors 68020
Jan 23, 2017
2,310
1,150
Thanks for the advice guys. I was just on the phone with Apple and there's no appointment available at a local store until Sunday. They advised that I don't use the machine until they look at it, so I've shut it down and put it in a case in the garage where it can't cause any significant damage if it decides to explode. It's a 2015 rMBP that is just about two years old now, so still under applecare.
Provided you are not charging it, you should not have to worry about a venting as it just happening randomly while not being charged is extremely rare, and, the polymer insulation is there for the very purpose of containing the release of gas (hence the swell)...BUT, if you are extremely concerned, LiPo charging bags can help contain a vent. However, if you had it plugged in, then there would be a reason to worry (because one reason for LiCo failure is when a charging system fails to terminate charging upon reaching the [safe] surge voltage, and continues to overcharge, as unlike NiCad/NiMH cells, LiCo/LiMn cells cannot be continuously trickle charged, and so a failure to terminate at the correct voltage can result in "rapid disassembly".) (Battery gurus would be able to better explain this than I.)
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But a battery should never swell up with high safety hazards.
It's not that unusual, although it is less common with newer cells. The swelling is an outcome of the high safety standards, as opposed to the alternative without such a containment feature :)
 

JackieInCo

Suspended
Jul 18, 2013
5,178
1,584
Colorado
It's not that unusual, although it is less common with newer cells. The swelling is an outcome of the high safety standards, as opposed to the alternative without such a containment feature :)
I've had batteries swell up on two old MacBooks, a 2008 and a 2010. So far I've been lucky on my 2012 MBP with 17 cycles and my 2015 with 18 cycles. I bought both new in 2015.