Letting the battery die, is it good?

Discussion in 'iPhone' started by Natesac, Jul 22, 2008.

  1. Natesac macrumors 6502a

    Natesac

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    #1
    In my few years of owning Ipods of various types I have always tried my best to take good care of the battey that is locked inside.

    From what I have come to understand about lithium ion batts is that it is always best to keep them charged and that letting them "die" is the "worst" thing to do to them other than sticking them in the oven.

    I have seen many threads about batteries on these forums. Many saying that the battery life improves after a few full charges and discharges. I am fairly sure I am seeing this effect on my 3g.

    my question, Does it hurt to run the battery down until it shuts off on its own?

    I would like to continue a few more good cycles before I start charging it all the time here and there.

    I just wanted to know if it was better to let it "die" or to just run it below 10%?
     
  2. markgamber macrumors 6502

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    #2
    All the phones I've had in the past couple of years won't let you run it down to actual zero, they all protect themselves. So I kind of doubt you could do any real damage by using it until the phone shuts itself off. There's also no real proof that doing so helps the battery. Personally, my battery has gotten noticeably better since buying the phone a week and a half ago and it's never fallen below 50%. I think a lot of people are confusing "conditioning", as in what you had to do with the old school rechargables, with "calibrating" such as what you do with Macbooks and the like.
     
  3. slicecom macrumors 68020

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    #3
    Exactly. Theres a failsafe built into the phone. Running it until the phone shuts off does NOT fully deplete the battery, it shuts off to protect the battery.
     
  4. ivtecDOu macrumors 6502

    ivtecDOu

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    #4
    there is no reason to let it die just charge it whenever
     
  5. gowanis macrumors 6502

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    #5
    i always follow the ABC rule. Always Be Charging.

    I have found that frequent charging is good for battery life.
     
  6. Natesac thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Natesac

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    #6
    This what I have always heard about lithium batts. Keeping them charged keeps them happy. I was just wanted to check to see if that was still the case.

    I know they don't need the conditioning like the old nickle cad batts.


    How does this "calibrating" work? and how is it done properly? (please do not respond with a "just charge it" post)
     
  7. protekt0r macrumors regular

    protekt0r

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    Albuquerque, NM
    #7
    the answer to that depends on which expert you ask. many say depleting the battery does nothing for Lithium Ion batteries while a few insist it does. personally I don't buy it. i have a 2nd gen. ipod that's going on 6 years old now and it charge it very erratically. i still get 8hrs of usage out of that sucker.

    having said that my macbook's battery had to be replaced about 12 months ago because i left the computer in standby with no charge too long. it was so badly depleted it wouldn't recharge. apple happily replaced it free of charge. so from my experience depletion is bad.

    what has been proven as fact is this: do not charge your phone in the heat or leave it in the heat (or direct sunlight). doing so will damage the life of a battery. it also depletes the charge state rather quickly.
     
  8. Natesac thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Natesac

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    #8
    Oh Yeah, I keep it out of the sun, even in the car I try to hide it from the sun. I live in the dallas area so a parked car heats up 100+ in a few minutes.

    Still unclear on what "calibrating" a batt is.
     
  9. Mad Mac Maniac macrumors 601

    Mad Mac Maniac

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    #9
    woot go dallas!!! Yea, i keep it in my trunk (only when i need to of course). no direct sunlight and stays moderately cooler

    oh and as for calibrating. I'm not really sure, but from what I remember ppl in MR saying things about it before. As best as I can remember it deals with 'resetting' your battery display. there is a certain way u discharge and charge your battery which allows it to display the proper battery life. I don't think it actually effects battery life in any way though
     
  10. Mad Mac Maniac macrumors 601

    Mad Mac Maniac

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    #10
    oh also. I've heard that if you keep your laptop plugged in for too long it is bad for your battery.

    Is this still true?
     
  11. DiamondMac macrumors 68040

    DiamondMac

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    #11
    Even when people tell me to let them die, I usually end up charging them. I always want them to be as charged as possible so when I do need it......
     
  12. ntrigue macrumors 68040

    ntrigue

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    Jul 30, 2007
    #12
    +1

    However, it is prudent to fully discharge after 30 cycles in order to calibrate the battery life. Otherwise, the battery may die unexpectedly and/or the 10% warning will be very inaccurate.
     
  13. sushi Moderator emeritus

    sushi

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    #13
    I usually charge my lithium batteries when I can, so I keep them charged most of the time.

    Then occasionally, I let them go to power off. Since there is protection, the battery never reaches zero so it doesn't hurt the battery.
     
  14. Mad Mac Maniac macrumors 601

    Mad Mac Maniac

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    #14
    I hear so many differing opinions on this topic.

    But here is my own (completely uneducated) guess. I think generally it depends on the number of charges. There will be other little factors as well, but I like to think of it as just like say for example 600 charges. So technically if you let ur battery die (wait longer on each battery life) you have more battery life total, but with the same number of charges. But you don't have to try to stretch it out, waiting until ur battery dies before you charge it.

    basically just charge it whenever is convenient. You're battery die eventually no matter what. So just deal with it.
     
  15. firewood macrumors 604

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    #15
    The battery itself doesn't need calibration, however the built-in battery charge controller does. The charge controller is a circuit that doesn't let the battery run down too far or overcharge, but until the circuit logic has measured the battery's behavior (time, voltage, current, maybe temperature) a full cycle or two, it guesses on the safe side, and your battery gauge says empty way too soon.
     
  16. Natesac thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Natesac

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    #16
    all right! thanks to all of you for adding in.


    I think I got what I was looking for. I get the ABC thing cause when you are charging, your phone is on, but not using a cycle. Cheating the battery death a a little longer
     
  17. knome macrumors 6502

    knome

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    Sep 7, 2006
    #17
    It isn't supposed to be considering charging technology but my powerbook has apparently not followed that rule. I always keep it plugged in and now after 6 months the battery in it is so severely screwed up that it will last about 5 minutes off the charger and if the % dips bellow 50% it won't even go into sleep mode to change the battery. Its a good idea to have two batteries if you are going to be spending a whole lot of time at a plug like an office or something. Have one battery for in office and one battery to take with you if you die on the road. Then when that battery is depleted charge it up and then replace it with the every day use battery. I have 3 batteries. One for constant use, 1 for when the first one dies on the road and if i get to it i have a third one. All of them last me about 5 hours.

    As for lithium ion batteries the only thing i know is that they have a max amount of charges that the battery can take before it is fried. This number varies but i remember being told that its around 300-400 times before it is fried.
     

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