Macbook Swollen Battery: Help with Apple Defects

Discussion in 'MacBook' started by thelawnetwork, Sep 5, 2015.

  1. thelawnetwork macrumors member

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    #1
    I'm very frustrated. Bought a Macbook from someone solely for the purpose of uploading our apps to the Apple App Store because Apple decided we couldn't use any device we wanted to upload binaries. The first mistake was upgrading the OS to Mountain Lion so I could upload our Apps because Apple required the upgrade, which I paid for at the time. I found out that the battery would drain like mad and that I was not alone in seeing this problem. There was a thread at the Apple forums about how Apple knew about this issue for over a year but didn't / couldn't fix it. So I DIDN'T USE THE MACBOOK AT ALL.

    Fast forward to an update for our app about 8-9 months later. I take the Macbook out of the bag and case and it's bulging something terrible. The trackpad is pushed far out of position, the bottom of the device has popped out screws. And I can't figure out how on earth this could have happened.

    Apparently this is a known Apple manufacturing defect. I'm wondering how others of you have or may have handled this issue. It's one thing to say that a battery failed and is out of a manufacturer's warranty. It's another to know about a serious defect like this where non-use can destroy the device and not have a recall or announcement so that users can deal with the issue before it becomes a fire hazard and also potentially destroys the entire investment. I'd take pictures but you can find them online.
     
  2. Queen6 macrumors 603

    Queen6

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    #2
    They followed Apples usage guidelines and replaced the battery in a timely fashion...

    Q-6
     
  3. thelawnetwork thread starter macrumors member

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    #3
    What are Apple guidelines exactly - not to tell consumers that they know batteries can swell dramatically and damage their own devices? The battery worked wonderfully. The device was in great condition. And furthermore, the device was damaged not even as a result of any actual use either.
     
  4. T'hain Esh Kelch macrumors 601

    T'hain Esh Kelch

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    #4
    This is common knowledge with these kind of batteries. It is like expecting car tires not to wear down when used.

    OSX even tells you to replace it!
     
  5. JackieInCo macrumors 601

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    #5
    On my old 2010 white MB, the battery swelled and pushed the track pad up through the case breaking the case. The warning in OS X didn't come till a few months later.
     
  6. Queen6 macrumors 603

    Queen6

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    #6
    Search for yourself it`s a limitation of this current battery technology; 3-5 year the battery will fail and swell. No need of all the drama, just take it to Apple and have them replace the battery. If you plan to store and not use the MacBook for extended periods of time, Apple has guidelines for this situation.

    Right Now best thing you can do is speak with Apple and see what they say, likely they will say the same replace it. If you are luckly Apple may waiver the cost.

    https://www.apple.com/batteries/

    Q-6
     
  7. thelawnetwork thread starter macrumors member

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    #7
    Sad. Found this often on Apple forums too. Don't really want to think about the issue or read it - Apple must be right. They are just the greatest. Ever. Epic...

    1) What is common knowledge? I've been seriously involved in IT for over 20 years and I have yet to see any battery swell anything close to these Macbook batteries. Fact is that they almost never do. They simply die.

    2) Did you read what I wrote? I didn't even use the Macbook. Not used. Not turned on. The batteries apparently swell due to some internal defect.

    3) As per the above, the battery was perfectly fine. OS X didn't tell me to replace it at all. It had a few hundred cycles for a battery that Apple itself rates as having 1,000 cycles if I recall correctly. As I wrote, the Macbook sat in the box. Sat there. Not on. The battery just swelled up and burst open the case on both sides.
     
  8. JackieInCo macrumors 601

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    #8
    Apple no longer sells MacBook batteries online or in stores. You have to get a replacement from iFixit or other sites.
     
  9. thelawnetwork thread starter macrumors member

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    #9
    When you pay me several hundred dollars for already pricey Apple hardware that I barely used at all and simply failed in an unusual way, you can then talk about drama. :)

    Second - This is not a limitation of any known battery technology. The swelling occurred with the device OFF. NOT USED. And the swelling was so bad that it broke through both sides of the case. The trackpad looks like it probably needs replacing. If this is what one expects from Apple hardware according to their guidelines then I challenge them to say so. I'm guessing it isn't because few will want to purchase hardware that does this... and it appears I'm not alone.
     
  10. thelawnetwork thread starter macrumors member

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    #10
    My issue isn't even whether the battery itself works or not - it worked fine. The problem is that this was a defect that was apparently known to Apple and there is no official statement, announcement or publication to consumers that I can find about this issue. As a result, the entire device is now damaged as a result of not even using it. Just sat in the box.
     
  11. Queen6 macrumors 603

    Queen6

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    #11
    No not really Apple get`s it wrong in more ways than one same as most manufactures, however in this case it`s just a lack of understanding of this specific technology. Not using a lithium based battery of this age & design for such a long period of time is detrimental to the cells lifespan.

    Likely you will see more posts reinforcing this, as recommended speak with Apple they may be willing to help, equally your MacBook is 4 years old, the lack of use/preparation during storage has very likely accelerated the depletion/failure of the battery.

    Q-6
     
  12. thelawnetwork thread starter macrumors member

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    #12
    Anyway... I scheduled an appointment at the Apple store and I was curious to know how others have handled this issue, as I mentioned. Replacing the battery doesn't seem to be an option if it's at an addition cost (parts and labor) especially since the swelling may have damaged the Macbook itself. My damage isn't as bad as this but the bulge you see on the palm rest is actually what was done to my trackpad and cracked part of the case. Stuff like this just shouldn't happen and there should be some recall or warning if they know this is happening.

    [​IMG]
     
  13. thelawnetwork thread starter macrumors member

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    #13
    LOL. The cell's lifespan is the least of my concerns. I have laptops that I have sitting on a shelf that still hold a charge. And even if they lost capacity, they sure didn't swell up like a balloon.

    THE PROBLEM: I can use a Macbook with a battery that has low capacity. I can't use a Macbook with a battery that swelled so badly sitting in its box for several months that it broke through both sides of the device - trackpad and bottom case.

    Yes, it appears that I'll have to take the trip into the Apple Store. I'll let all of you know how it goes. I'm just shocked. Never thought this would happen and now we have no device to update Apps in the App Store. Very disappointing.
     
  14. Queen6, Sep 5, 2015
    Last edited: Sep 5, 2015

    Queen6 macrumors 603

    Queen6

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    #14
    Impressive picture, equally best path is with Apple, we are not being difficult, here, it`s just how it is. It your based in the UK or EU you may find that you are covered by local consumer legislation for 5-6 from point of purchase, if so make it clear to Apple you are aware, equally read up on it first.

    Q-6
     
  15. JackieInCo macrumors 601

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    #15
    Good luck. I doubt that they will do anything with a five year old MacBook. When is your appointment?
     
  16. RUGGLES99 macrumors 6502

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    #16
    Its almost 2016, get real and get a MODERN laptop.
     
  17. AFEPPL macrumors 68020

    AFEPPL

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    #17
    Thats really bad, i didn't know that - apple should replace it FOC if its a known issue.
    I've never heard any other laptops splitting apart from the batteries and i have laptops since the 90s

    Start putting it on social media and don't take now for an answer.
     
  18. T'hain Esh Kelch macrumors 601

    T'hain Esh Kelch

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    #18
    I have a problem, and even though I am way out of warranty for an electrical product, a product which I didn't read up on, and now I feel like I am entitled to get my ass wiped with gold. Boo ****ing hoo?

    I assume you haven't had laptops then. I've had 4 batteries die on me with swelling, and I know countless other who has also have it happen.


    Good for you. Long time storage of these batteries without keeping them charged is a sure way to swell them.

    Quite a contradictory statement to #2, don't you think?
     
  19. JackieInCo macrumors 601

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    #19
    I doubt Apple will actually do anything and nor are they required to do anything after these many years. They didn't do anything for me a year ago when mine swelled because it was just too old.
     
  20. thelawnetwork thread starter macrumors member

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    #20
    Never a good idea to try to flame others. If Apple would list this as an issue, you'd be right. But to somehow insist anyone should know about this specific defect that is an Apple Macbook issue means everyone knows you're just talking out of your ash. Show us how anyone could "read up" on this issue - is it in the Macbook manual? Did Apple issue a press release or warning? Oh right, it's "common knowledge" to you.


    I've had a multitude of laptops. One of my closest friends is an IT manager in a very large institution that has thousands of PCs. This doesn't happen. The fact that you had FOUR of them happen.... Either you're the unluckiest person in the world or all of your prior laptops were.... Macbooks. :D

    LOL again. Others state the batteries get warped from actual use and that OS X should warn you. Now you're insisting if you don't keep batteries charged regularly they will swell massively. Doesn't matter what you do - they swell. It's a manufacturing defect. No need for further discussion. You may now go back to playing with your dolls. :)
     
  21. thelawnetwork, Sep 5, 2015
    Last edited: Sep 5, 2015

    thelawnetwork thread starter macrumors member

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    #21
    Exactly. Doing a search now reveals that there are a multitude of others who had the same problem. There are several topics in the Apple forums as per above. They should have issued a warning, notification or placed information on the product page on their website. The swelling is so significant it cracked the case of the laptop and the trackpad appears significantly warped and probably damaged. I did a tremendous amount of research beforehand because I was trying to determine which Apple models would be capable of doing nothing more than uploading a binary to the App Store. And that's Apple's doing, deliberately making capable hardware obsolete to compel you to buy another machine.

    Regarding the yapping about "it's old you deserve it" yada, yada, yada... NewEgg and BestBuy (through Cowboom) both sell the same model, even older than mine, which I believe was manufactured later. And nobody deserves this.

    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16834100344
    http://www.cowboom.com/product/715713

    I'm supposed to go in there this weekend, possibly tomorrow. I'm going to expect them to be reasonable. 4-5 year old laptops shouldn't burst like this and are a significant fire hazard. I will also come with PDFs and URLs of the multitude of Macbook specific complaints to this model, if I need it. Will let you know how this turns out.
     
  22. thelawnetwork, Sep 5, 2015
    Last edited: Sep 5, 2015

    thelawnetwork thread starter macrumors member

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    #22
    All I can say is... wow. I certainly hope Apple has changed their stance. Should have my answer tomorrow. Seriously hope they have changed from the hard line drawn and lacking any responsibility, accountability or even helping customers avoid this issue. This is in ZDnet.

    http://www.zdnet.com/article/apple-macbook-battery-exploded/

    Apple is approaching its tenth year of exploding laptop batteries and might be fine with telling customers that its batteries bursting apart is "expected behavior." But believe me, it's far from expected, routine or safe when it actually happens.... Looking at the hundreds of current posts from unhappy customers with exploded batteries, in-laptop battery explosion seems to be a common problem.... Apple's party line is that an exploding battery in their non-exploding consumer devices is normal, and that's what people around the world are being told.

    http://consumerist.com/2011/01/14/dont-call-apple-about-your-expanding-battery-unless-it-explodes/

    So take cover everybody, Apple’s “official position” is that their batteries WILL expand and destroy your computer. Especially after they outlive their (and I quote) “optimistic, one year lifespan.”

    Last bit of info I found -- apparently Apple has known about these swollen and exploding batteries since 2006. They just stopped acknowledging the problem instead of fixing it.

    http://appleinsider.com/article/?id=1921?www.dailytech.com

    Anyway.... wish me luck guys!
     
  23. HoiPiet macrumors member

    HoiPiet

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    #23
    Your post makes me go wow. How old is that thing? I've got one from 2006 that had that problem, but i saw it happening. That swelling didn't happen in a week or two. I fixed it, but it involves some risk. You know you can run that computer without a battery.

    So for some commercial enterprise, you bought one off of an individual and not a retailer who would check it and provide some warranty although it would be limited. You couldn't go back long after and complain about your couple hundred dollar computer not working well. And you ignored it for a long time and now it doesn't work.

    Your evidence that its an Apple defect is that it happened without use. Right there you should stop, consider the things you're saying and ask macrumors to delete any evidence of your post. Not using it is evidence of nothing. You dug around to find some negative posts about Apple while there are literally thousands and thousands of posts about lithium battery risks and hazards. I'm not sure how anyone gets to adulthood without realizing that alkaline batteries can leak and lead acid batteries have a variety of inherent risks. Lithium technology has problems too.

    You claim to have a friend with a large company that has a huge number of laptops that don't have that problem. If they have ANY that are as old as that macbook, I don't believe you. What's the company?

    What you want is completely unreasonable. You can replace the whole thing with a working unit with battery and warranty for a low price and yet you're traipsing back and forth and complaining.

    You know you can use a laptop to facilitate addictive behaviors. If you lose your partner because of that happening, how would you assign responsibility? Apple likely doesn't have any warning.
     
  24. thelawnetwork, Sep 5, 2015
    Last edited: Sep 5, 2015

    thelawnetwork thread starter macrumors member

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    #24
    Of course I can complain and the issue has nothing whatsoever to do with whom I bought it from. Apple is the manufacturer and it seems they must have known about this defect. They continued to peddle it out into the street. And even when they knew, they decided to deny that there was any defect instead of helping out the masses of Apple Macbook customers to let them know about it and take caution before it destroys their entire Macbook. And I've noticed numerous Apple forum support topics referred to by these threads have disappeared.

    This is some funny stuff. Seriously... consider what you're saying before calling someone else a fool. LOL.

    Wake up and smell what you're shoveling. Do you know what a Ziff Davis is? That's a pretty hefty article. And the source he cites is hundreds of complaints in the Apple forum -- which are deleted. I found numerous others. The fact is that my symptoms are mirror images of numerous others. What battery leaks are you talking about? If you want to be Apple's PR manager, you need to avoid making stuff up. :) The battery bulges out of both sides

    If you really, really, really need to know, it's a major bank in the heart of a major city. Considering that Apple already had a recall on this very issue, try again. And I've never seen the rampant issues you're talking about.

    The reason I'm responding to you is in the hope that consumers will not become emotionally invested in a corporation and realize that a great many are alike. They will take advantage of consumers if they can. Corporations are not your friend. The executives rake in the money and if they can avoid liability, they will do so even if it's clearly not the right thing to do. In many instances they will do it because they know the cost of you trying to sue them (even though you may be right) is too much effort - and they can keep the money.

    What should they do? It's pretty obvious -- Take responsibility in some fashion. Don't say "well, buy another Apple device. Issue another recall or even a notification that batteries may swell. Consumers need to be aware of this issue so that it can be remedied in a timely fashion. And since much I've found and read points to crap manufacturing, they should probably shoulder some of the responsibility and find a way to help the customer/consumer find a solution. Perhaps that means a far more economical replacement than charging at least $130+ (and likely more) to replace what they caused and provide a remedy closer to cost -- at the very least. And if Apple's position is that batteries will last 1 year before being expected to swell.... well... then let other professionals hear about their official words. I'll invest the time to meet before deciding how to share the news. I hope they are understanding in the store. We'll see.

    PS - I hope everyone here who owns a MacBook will now be aware of this issue from reading this post. This way they can make sure to inspect their device regularly for signs of a problem and avoid the unit from being seriously damaged as mine was.
     
  25. HoiPiet macrumors member

    HoiPiet

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    #25
    You can complain, but you didn't respond to what I said. And then you misrepresent what happened. Here's some breaking news: nobody is worried about their nearly ten year old macbooks having lithium battery issues.

    Then, being non-responsive again, you say nothing of the thousands upon thousands of sources of information about the hazards and problems of lithium battery use and proclaim that Ziff Davis is heavy stuff. More breaking news: ZD has plenty of material that isn't "heavy."

    Again, being non-responsive, you embellish your claim about an IT manager but fail to comprehend that the batteries aren't swelling after a month or two. Does your supposed mega bank IT manager use laptops that are 8 or 9 years old? What's the name of the bank? You bought a really old computer off of some guy. What did you do to check it? How old is it? Those are relevant. Your claiming to have no knowledge isn't.

    Why don't you take responsibility? Its an old piece of equipment that you sound as if you bought off the street and did nothing to check. You could still use the computer if you stored it responsibly.

    Your emotional outpouring doesn't match the known facts. The idea that Apple is supposed to do something is absurd.
     

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