Macbook Pro beginning to worry me/piss me off

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by dcdude, Dec 13, 2010.

  1. dcdude, Dec 13, 2010
    Last edited: Feb 16, 2011

    dcdude macrumors member

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    Jun 30, 2008
    #1
    I have a 2.8ghz Intel Core 2 Duo unibody (early 09) macbook pro 15" running 10.5.8 with 4gb of RAM, purchased refurbished in June of last year

    no I didn't buy applecare, it was expensive (yes I know what's an extra $350 when you're spending 1400 blah blah), I know I should have, but it's too late so please try and give advice beyond taking it to the genius bar



    lately, maybe the past 2 months or so, my MBP has begun to somewhat randomly shut down and turn off at around 19-21%. after it shuts off, if I try to turn it back on, the optical drive, which previous to this made a quick and tight machine noise, that sounded completely normal and peppy - however, now it sounds like it's literally struggling to "turn over" and makes a much slower whirring noise and won't turn on.

    the computer will only turn on (after it's shut down randomly) if I first plug in the charger.

    it doesn't do this EVERY time it gets to around that % of battery charge, but it's becoming more frequent and starting to worry me

    any experiences like this? I've googled and found answers regarding everything from the battery to the logic board - now having typed out my situation and read it myself, it's plausible to me that it could be the battery - if it's not drawing enough power from the battery alone, but quickly turns on when plugged in - but I figure there may be other possibilities also

    thanks


    UPDATE: well, yeah this is probably not needed but I saw more people commented than I thought, so, it's definitely my battery. I used both coconut battery and system diagnosis or whatever it is... apparently my battery is at 30% health, or only 1000 mAh... not even been 2 years yet and just over 300 cycles, but what can you do.

    also I see that my battery read 75% health when I first posted this a little over a month ago (been out of the country). not really sure why it dropped so quickly? I've correctly calibrated my battery several times in hopes it would fix it, but no luck.

    anyway, i suppose i'll be buying a new battery. any suggestions for where to get one? is there a such thing as a higher capacity battery for my macbook?

    it sucks because otherwise the computer has been absolutely flawless, just this battery issue.
     
  2. GGJstudios macrumors Westmere

    GGJstudios

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    #2
    Have you calibrated your battery properly? It sounds like your readings are off. This should answer most, if not all, of your battery questions: Apple Notebook Battery FAQ
     
  3. dcdude, Dec 13, 2010
    Last edited: Dec 13, 2010

    dcdude thread starter macrumors member

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    #3
    i've been very careful with calibrating the battery ever since I've owned the computer - letting it charge to full and drain completely, etc.

    I probably cycle my battery more than most people here (from what i've read) because I use the battery unplugged to depletion at least 4 times a week

    but I'll certainly try it.



    EDIT: although I just ran coconut battery - which tells me my battery capacity is at 75% and has 3480/4600 mAh remaining - so I'm hoping that's a false reading due to not calibrating?
     
  4. GGJstudios macrumors Westmere

    GGJstudios

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    #4
    That's not calibrating. Read the link I posted.
     
  5. DePaulBlueDemon macrumors regular

    DePaulBlueDemon

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    #5
    Unfortunately, draining the battery and recharging is not the same as calibrating. Calibrate it! Twice.
     
  6. marshallbedsaul macrumors 6502a

    marshallbedsaul

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    #6
    I know you said you dont want to hear take it to apple, but you never know what they will say or try to help you with the computer. They also may offer you a flat rate fix where they ship it off to be repaired ect... And that is around 300 dollars too just like applecare would of been.
     
  7. GGJstudios macrumors Westmere

    GGJstudios

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    #7
    Once will do. Twice is unnecessary and needlessly adds another cycle.
     
  8. DePaulBlueDemon macrumors regular

    DePaulBlueDemon

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    #8
    That was tongue-in-cheek. :)
     
  9. mofunk macrumors 68000

    mofunk

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    #9
    I know its a little late, but you can find Apple Care on Amazon.com or Smalldog.com cheaper for the cost of around $0.35 per day. :eek:

    Right now its $280 ($12 per month/$0.40 per day)


    I usually wait till two weeks before the factory warrantee is up,and then purchase Apple Care. This way I'm not paying all that money upfront. Throw your loose change in a jar for 11months. :apple:

    next time :(

    (back to subject))) Mine did that once or twice. I remember placing my iPod on/near the power button. That had never happened before. I just thought it was a fluke. Did you indadvertedly touch around that area?
     
  10. deeesea macrumors 6502

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    #10
    Sounds like a dead battery to me,

    and a dead super drive can't cost that much to replace. Heck you know what? Rip out the Super drive, buy an external one from Apple and dump a SSD in that unused SATA slot,
    then replace the battery with another one, and calibrate, and you're good. Doesn't sound like a dying logic board, but just a battery that wasn't properly calibrated and thus gives you bad readings :)
     
  11. thinkinblue613 macrumors 6502

    thinkinblue613

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    #11
    Definitely sounds like a battery issue.. They usually tell you what condition they're in on the main tab. Currently, mine says "Replace Soon" :D
     
  12. GGJstudios macrumors Westmere

    GGJstudios

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    #12
    This has nothing to do with the OP's problem. It's not a power button issue. It's a battery issue.
     
  13. Rob.G macrumors 6502

    Rob.G

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    #13
    I see two options:

    A. Take it to Apple and let them figure it out, being prepared to pay for it.

    B. Go on eBay and order up a new battery and put it in.

    I bet B will solve your problem and is likely a lot cheaper than taking it to Apple. MacBook batteries are known to last only a year to maybe eighteen months, so I'd say you're due. My own MBP is just over a year old and so I'm expecting its battery to start acting up in the not too distant future.

    Rob
     
  14. GGJstudios macrumors Westmere

    GGJstudios

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    #14
    That's not true. You'll find MANY users are still on the same battery after 2 or 3 years... or more. (over 2 1/2 years on mine) If you use your battery properly, it will last much longer than 18 months.
     
  15. Rob.G macrumors 6502

    Rob.G

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    #15
    Can you explain to me what you mean by "properly" then? Very curious. I just know that quite a few people I follow on Twitter (fellow developers) who are on Macs, keep posting about needing replacement batteries.

    Rob
     
  16. GGJstudios macrumors Westmere

    GGJstudios

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    #16
    Read the link I posted in the 2nd post in this thread.
     
  17. iphone1105 macrumors 68020

    iphone1105

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    #17
    He just means to use it, like you would with anything. Keeping a battery plugged in all the time isn't the best. Put some miles on it and it should last a while, calibrate it 7-8 times a year too!
     
  18. snberk103, Dec 14, 2010
    Last edited: Dec 14, 2010

    snberk103 macrumors 603

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    #18
    My best guess is battery too. I had a battery go on my MBP (I think it's the same vintage as your's, OP). The weird thing was that sometimes the onboard diagnostics found that it had gone bad, and sometimes it they said it was fine.

    Of course, the diagnostics always found the battery to be fine when I had AppleCare on the phone.... I finally took it to my friendly Apple Authorized Repair shop and they plugged the system into a more sophisticated setup, and found the battery to have gone bad. I called AppleCare again (the shop had had made a note on my file declaring the battery bad) and was promptly transferred to someone who told me that in fact batteries are not covered by AppleCare.... but in this case they would graciously make an exemption, just for me, and send me a new battery. I didn't argue with him, because all I needed was the battery - not to win a debating contest.

    I think I read somewhere that Apple warranties their batteries (the ones we are talking about) to be 80% healthy for year, OR 200 cycles [correction: 300cycles]. Mine was way under 200 cycles. Also way over a year, but I had AppleCare.

    Check out the Apple Support pages. Apple has documented what they expect a battery to do. Also check the community forums. Apple also occasionally has an "unannounced" warranty on some things. There are some things that were designed badly, and they know so, and they will replace even if outside of the warranty. There were a number of bad batteries released. I don't suppose your's is bulging?

    Long Story short..... (too late, I know).... I think it's your battery. I think you are out of luck regarding a free replacement (it's been more than a year and you say you cycle about 4 times per week, so you are 200+ cycles likely [but are you 300+]). Buy a new battery. I had to buy one for my wife's MBP, and went 3rd party. The store (Apple Authorized, not Apple Corp) told me that Apple is using the same technology to make their MBP batteries as when they were first introduced, and the good 3rd parties are using newer technologies. So, better battery for the same price.

    Finally .... my wife and I had essentially the same MBPs. She left her's plugged in all the time, and went through 3 batteries. I use mine on battery power for a little while every day or every other day. I try to keep the cycles down, but I exercise the battery often. Sometimes I even remember to calibrate it. After 2.5 years I've only now gone through my first battery.

    Good Luck
     
  19. GGJstudios macrumors Westmere

    GGJstudios

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    #19
    They aren't, except in the case of defect. Read the FAQ for details. (2nd post in the thread)
    Read the FAQ link I posted for the actual terms.
    It's not 200 cycles. Read the FAQ.
    That's a good practice.
     
  20. snberk103 macrumors 603

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    #20
    Read some Facts?!?! What are you?? Some mad-scientist?? (Big Smile)
    Thanks, I've made some corrections to my post...

    But I still say that Apple policy and Apple practice regarding battery replacement aren't always consistent.
     
  21. GGJstudios, Dec 14, 2010
    Last edited: Dec 14, 2010

    GGJstudios macrumors Westmere

    GGJstudios

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    #21
    What makes you say that?
    mad-scientist.png
     
  22. mofunk macrumors 68000

    mofunk

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    #22


    Sorry I was trying to see if he/she may have indadvertedly hit around that area. My ipod didn't touch the power button, but when I placed it around the speaker area it indadvertedly shut down. I was hoping he had eliminated the obvious. If it doesn't want to turn on, possibly could be a wire or something loose, since his battery is still showing a charge.


    On my PB G4 my battery needs replacing but its never shut down until its at 0%. But yeah makes those funny sounds :)
     
  23. mofunk macrumors 68000

    mofunk

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    #23
    Ok a few weeks after I saw this thread, my battery died. I went to the Apple store and had it replaced. The Genius Guy said it had around 200 cycles used. It was just over a year of usage.

    Now that I have the new battery in I still have the same problems. So again, yes the battery is partial to blame, but I'm sure there is something else. Around 42% while working on my Mac, it will go directly in sleep mode but in a weird way. I will play around with before sending it back..
     
  24. dcdude thread starter macrumors member

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    Jun 30, 2008
    #24
    updated my original post

    also, where is the best place to buy a new battery?
     
  25. GGJstudios, Feb 16, 2011
    Last edited: Feb 16, 2011

    GGJstudios macrumors Westmere

    GGJstudios

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    #25
    Here.
     

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