New MBP - Battery Care Advice?

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by DreamscapeRuins, Jul 8, 2011.

  1. DreamscapeRuins, Jul 8, 2011
    Last edited: Jul 8, 2011

    DreamscapeRuins macrumors member

    DreamscapeRuins

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    Inside your mind
    #1
    This has probably been asked before. But I got my new MBP today, and I was wondering - whats the best way to care for the battery? Should I let it drain out, and then plug it back up to fully charge? Or have it plugged in when available and only let it run off the battery power when I have to (ie. When I'm away from home)?

    I had a minor problem with my first MacBook - and that was the life of the battery. I've got around 900 cycles on it now, and that was in the timespan of a couple of years. So, the battery life on my first MB has decreased significantly, which is why I upgraded to the MBP.

    I'd like to avoid that this time around, if possible? Less cycles = keeping it plugged in more than not. Would that be worse for it?
     
  2. marshallbedsaul macrumors 6502a

    marshallbedsaul

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    Nov 14, 2007
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    Maryland
    #2
    whenever I buy a new mac I use it for about a week mix of draining battery and killing it just w.e for a week. After 1 week I usually calibrate the battery. I kill the battery til it wont turn on. Upon power up full charge plus 2 hours. After just use as you normally would. A lot of people keep on charger another chunk dont your choice.
     
  3. Lennyvalentin macrumors 6502a

    Lennyvalentin

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    Apr 25, 2011
    #3
    Lithium-based batteries prefer if you don't deep-cycle them. In fact, you shouldn't even charge it completely, but rather keep it within 40-80% capacity at all times (though that's of course unfeasible in a portable device like a computer, but is a common strategy in automotive applications for example to extend the life of the battery pack).

    They also like cool temperatures (heat causes the electrolyte to break down faster, making the battery to lose capacity quicker), so for longest battery life you should keep the laptop out of sunlight and away from other heatsources.
     
  4. ladytonya macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Oct 14, 2008
    #4
    I've read so many different things about batteries and I am confused! It seems there are as many different ways to calibrate a battery as there are people. :confused:

    I got my MBP on Tuesday. The battery was around 80% and I used it for about 30 minutes in the store getting things started and then probably about 2 hours at home. I then plugged it in overnight to give it a full charge. Wednesday, I was out and about a while and used it off battery power during the day/evening until it was in the mid-40% range, then plugged it in again overnight. Yesterday, pretty much the same usage down to about 60%, plugged in overnight. So, the 40's is as low as I've allowed my battery to get. Do I need to drain it all the way down to nothing and recharge to calibrate it now or should I keep using it a little longer? This is generally how I use my electronics and I pretty much always notice a decline in battery over time. My last laptop was a HP which are notoriously bad on battery life! I've already used this MBP WAY longer than the HP would ever go on battery power, but I also want to keep it that way so any advice/suggestions/places to look besides the battery links certain people like to post would be GREATLY appreciated. I've just read those links ad nauseum and still don't feel like I know what it means to calibrate a battery and how often/if it even needs to be done.
     
  5. Wehrwolf macrumors 6502

    Wehrwolf

    Joined:
    May 21, 2009
    #5
    This is not a good practice to do constantly with lithium batteries. It is a hold-over from older battery technology days when "memory" was an issue, which lithium batteries don't have.

    Any battery will decline over time, whether you use it or not. Best thing is to stop obsessing over the battery, and use the computer as it suits you. Also read the page linked below.

    http://www.apple.com/batteries/notebooks.html
     
  6. awer25 macrumors 65816

    awer25

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  7. ABadSanta macrumors regular

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    Jul 3, 2011
    #7
    IIt's healthy for the battery to die every so often (for smart phones for example, people recommend once a month).

    It's not healthy to keep your laptop plugged in while the battery is fully charged. This will ruin your battery life and decrease the life of your battery significantly.
     
  8. cloroxbleach4 macrumors 6502a

    cloroxbleach4

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    #8
    This is false. Read the link posted above by awer.
     
  9. GGJstudios, Jul 17, 2011
    Last edited: Jul 17, 2011

    GGJstudios macrumors Westmere

    GGJstudios

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    #9
    Wow! So much misinformation posted in this thread! Time to clear it up.
    The best advice is to run on battery when you need to and plug it in when you can. Just don't run plugged in all the time. Read the link below.
    That is not the proper way to calibrate a battery. Read the CALIBRATION section of the link below for the correct steps.
    That's not true. There's no problem with fully draining or fully charging Apple notebook batteries. Yes, it uses up cycles, but so does shorter drains/charges. Calibrating a battery, which Apple recommends, involves fully charging, then fully draining, then fully charging a battery. Apple certainly wouldn't recommend something that would be bad for the battery.
    There's only one way to properly calibrate a battery. Read the CALIBRATION section in the link below.
    Then you haven't read the Battery FAQ I post in most of these battery threads, because it clearly states what calibration does, how to calibrate and how often.
    This is also false. While it's not healthy to stay plugged in ALL the time, it's not harmful at all to leave it plugged in with the battery fully charged. It will not overcharge. Once the battery is charged, it stops charging, even if it's plugged in.

    Rather than listen to all the nonsense being posted in this and other threads, it's better to get the facts by reading the link below. This should answer most, if not all, of your battery questions:
     
  10. Lennyvalentin macrumors 6502a

    Lennyvalentin

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    Apr 25, 2011
    #10
    Actually, it is true. It's a lithium-ion or polymer battery, it's not a magic "Apple" battery. All such lithium batteries share certain common traits to a greater or lesser extent depending on the particular chemistry, but one of these is deep-cycling them wears them out faster. It's just the way it is, don't blame the messenger here.

    Apple recommends the calibration procedure because it helps to keep the battery capacity indicator (more) accurate. This usually is important in a mobile device like a laptop, so it doesn't unexpectedly shut down on you.

    It ALSO kills the battery a tiny bit, but obviously Apple considers the improved capacity estimation from the calibration procedure worth the trade-off. If you don't calibrate too often I'd say they're right. :)
     
  11. Nostromo, Jul 17, 2011
    Last edited: Jul 17, 2011

    Nostromo macrumors 65816

    Nostromo

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    #11
    Heat sources like 4-core processors? ;)

    Here's the round-up by Apple: http://www.apple.com/batteries/notebooks.html
     
  12. GGJstudios macrumors Westmere

    GGJstudios

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    May 16, 2008
    #12
    You can keep saying that, but it doesn't make it right. Any battery will die over time, no matter what you do, whether you leave it plugged in or cycle it all the time, if you deep or shallow discharge it. Some of those things will lead to an early death. You won't hasten an early death by calibrating or deep-discharging your battery from time to time. Apple makes the batteries. Apple covers them if they're defective. Apple's recommendations on how to care for Apple notebook batteries have more merit than an individual posting in a forum, or any generic battery site.
     
  13. Nostromo macrumors 65816

    Nostromo

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    #13
    Actually, Apple recommends for those who need to store their MBP for 6 months or longer to charge it at 50% so it WON'T deep discharge. Deep-discharges seem to be bad for these batteries.

    But a deep discharge seems to be a more exhausted state than the one that's used for battery calibration.

    Same goes for storing an MBP with battery full.

    As far as I know only old batteries lasted longer if you exhausted them and then fully charged them.

    Modern Li batteries don't care if you reload them at 70% or 30% or 10% capacity.

    One cycle is 100% of battery capacity. So two 50% charges mean one cycle, not two. This info is from Apple's website and shows that Li batteries have no problem to be reloaded at any charge amount.
     
  14. GGJstudios macrumors Westmere

    GGJstudios

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    May 16, 2008
    #14
    We're not talking about storing batteries, but using them. There is nothing at all harmful about fully draining or fully recharging Apple notebook batteries in normal use.
     
  15. ladytonya macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Oct 14, 2008
    #15
    Actually, Mr. GGJStudios, I HAVE read your FAQ along with a lot of other information about batteries because I am sick of having batteries of my portable devices lose power over time. My last laptop won't even hold any kind of charge any more, I can only use it when it's connected to an outlet. I do not want this to happen to my MacBook, hence all the research I have done. Given all the conflicting info even just in this thread, how do I know who do believe? What makes you the God of MacRumors forums that posts all these links? A lot of what you post is very informative, but what makes your info better than anybody else's? Like I said, you do give a lot of info and post a lot of valuable information in these forums, but this is an internet forum where a lot of information is available. The drawback of reading these forums is that you can never know who has the proper information, other than what is posted in the support documents on apple.com.
     
  16. GGJstudios macrumors Westmere

    GGJstudios

    Joined:
    May 16, 2008
    #16
    Because all the information in the Battery FAQ I post comes directly from Apple. None of it is my opinion.
    I agree, which is why the information in the Battery FAQ comes directly from Apple, as all the links I post in the FAQ will prove.
     
  17. yusukeaoki macrumors 68030

    yusukeaoki

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    Mar 22, 2011
    Location:
    Tokyo, Japan
    #17
    2011 MBP Bluetooth

    just drain its life a bit and recharge it.
    do it once every month and it should be good
     
  18. GGJstudios macrumors Westmere

    GGJstudios

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    May 16, 2008
    #18
    It needs more cycling than that to remain healthy. Read the Battery FAQ.
     
  19. Prodo123 macrumors 68020

    Prodo123

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    Nov 18, 2010
    #19
    That's for cell-based li-ion or li-poly batteries. By my knowledge, Apple uses a special design which allows for extremely high battery life, and makes the 80% thing you mentioned false.
     
  20. GGJstudios macrumors Westmere

    GGJstudios

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    May 16, 2008
    #20
    Apple uses lithium-polymer batteries, but the 40-80% statement is still false.
     
  21. DWBurke811 macrumors 6502a

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    Jun 10, 2011
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    Boca Raton, FL
    #21
    over discharging any lipo battery is bad for it; however, i'm sure whatever voltage a macbook "dies" at is well above that threshold.
     
  22. DanMacApple macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jul 1, 2010
    #22
    I usually do not recharge the battery until it is under 25%. Just enjoy your purchase and try not think about the battery, as if you take care of your system you should be fine.
     

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