Replace MacBook battery before it becomes "vintage"

Sangeppato

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Jun 2, 2019
18
4
Hello,

I've got a 2014 15" MBP that I want to keep as my main device for another 2/3 years (when I'll hopefully finish the university). The laptop is still in mint condition and pretty powerful for what I do, the only issue is that lately the battery health went a bit downhill, quickly passing from 91% to about 85%.

This device will become "vintage" next year, meaning that Apple will not be forced to offer hardware support fot it in the future.

Since I want to keep it anyway, will they accept to replace by battery for the standard out-of-warranty price of 209€ even if the battery health is still above 80%?

I'm not asking if I should replace it rather than upgrading or whatever, I'm just interested in other people's experience with Apple battery replacement, thanks!
 

macintoshmac

macrumors 68040
May 13, 2010
3,217
2,751
Of course they will. Why not? It's money for them.
I do not think they will keep offering battery replacements even on vintage-labeled devices, money or no money.

To the OP:

If this device is going to be vintage next year, and you want to keep it for a while, your best bet is to get that battery replaced well in advance and call it a day.
 

Sangeppato

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Jun 2, 2019
18
4
Of course they will. Why not? It's money for them.
Because on Retinas they have to replace the entire top case, so I'm not sure they're going to earn anything for 209€/199$.

I do not think they will keep offering battery replacements even on vintage-labeled devices, money or no money.

To the OP:

If this device is going to be vintage next year, and you want to keep it for a while, your best bet is to get that battery replaced well in advance and call it a day.
Yeah that's exactly my plan: replace the battery within May 2020 when it will become Vintage and happily keeping using it for 2/3 extra years.

The problem is that I'm not sure Apple will accept to replace it for their standard 209€ price since its health is still above 80%
 

macintoshmac

macrumors 68040
May 13, 2010
3,217
2,751
Because on Retinas they have to replace the entire top case, so I'm not sure they're going to earn anything for 209€/199$.



Yeah that's exactly my plan: replace the battery within May 2020 when it will become Vintage and happily keeping using it for 2/3 extra years.

The problem is that I'm not sure Apple will accept to replace it for their standard 209€ price since its health is still above 80%
You may try insisting on replacement. However, don’t know what it would be like by May 2020. Wait and see. :)
 

nnoble

macrumors 6502
Jun 19, 2011
410
458
Third party vendors and repair people will keep you going long after Apple have dropped support. I have a 2010 15” that still has mileage.
 

Sangeppato

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Jun 2, 2019
18
4
I'm pretty sure Apple will deny the 209€ repair if battery health is still above 80% (and I don't blame them).

Third party vendors and repair people will keep you going long after Apple have dropped support. I have a 2010 15” that still has mileage.
My second option is buying an iFixit battery and replace it myself when the moment arrives. A friend of mine did it on his 2012 rMPB cutting the double sided tape with a fishing line and he said it was failry easy
 
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Ener Ji

macrumors 6502
Apr 10, 2010
380
281
I do not think they will keep offering battery replacements even on vintage-labeled devices, money or no money.

To the OP:

If this device is going to be vintage next year, and you want to keep it for a while, your best bet is to get that battery replaced well in advance and call it a day.
Because on Retinas they have to replace the entire top case, so I'm not sure they're going to earn anything for 209€/199$.



Yeah that's exactly my plan: replace the battery within May 2020 when it will become Vintage and happily keeping using it for 2/3 extra years.

The problem is that I'm not sure Apple will accept to replace it for their standard 209€ price since its health is still above 80%
Just a counterpoint to the advice to replace the battery right away before vintage status occurs:

Apple is still offering battery replacements for the 2012 rMBP (the very first Retina MBP) "while supplies last." That model went vintage over 18 months ago. There's a good chance that the 2014 MBP will similarly get an extended window of time, so I personally wouldn't rush to replace a battery that was still meeting my needs, because the sooner you replace it the sooner the new battery will start to wear out.

Of course, that depends on your comfort level of accepting an alternative solution in the (IMHO unlikely) event that Apple cuts off battery replacements right away. Alternatives include iFixit or eBay (do it yourself), third party repair shops, external battery, selling and upgrading to a new(er) laptop, etc.
 
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Sangeppato

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Jun 2, 2019
18
4
Just a counterpoint to the advice to replace the battery right away before vintage status occurs:

Apple is still offering battery replacements for the 2012 rMBP (the very first Retina MBP) "while supplies last." That model went vintage over 18 months ago. There's a good chance that the 2014 MBP will similarly get an extended window of time, so I personally wouldn't rush to replace a battery that was still meeting my needs, because the sooner you replace it the sooner the new battery will start to wear out.

Of course, that depends on your comfort level of accepting an alternative solution in the (IMHO unlikely) event that Apple cuts off battery replacements right away. Alternatives include iFixit or eBay (do it yourself), third party repair shops, external battery, selling and upgrading to a new(er) laptop, etc.
That's very nice to hear, I didn't know it.

Personally I'm fine with going with a third party (iFixit) battery, but having an official replacement from Apple would be nice (partially because of the resale value).
I guess I'll just ask next spring and, if they refuse, I'll come back when the battery drops under 80% hoping they will still have replacement parts.

I've also considered "upgrading" to a 2015, but IMHO it's not really worth it..
Where I live (Italy) the 15" from 2015 is still crazy expensive: I'd lose 150/200€ just for the exchange and I'd probably have to replace the battery anyway because it would still be a 4/5 years old machine (meaning another extra 209€).
Furthermore the 2015 has the exact same hardware as my 2014 (except for the trackpad) and I'm pretty sure that the next 13" base model with 10th gen chip will outperform it (hopefully at a reasonable price).
I don't even consider the 2016-2019 models because of their goddamn unreliable keyboards.
 
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satcomer

macrumors 603
Feb 19, 2008
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The Finger Lakes Region
That's very nice to hear, I didn't know it.

Personally I'm fine with going with a third party (iFixit) battery, but having an official replacement from Apple would be nice (partially because of the resale value).
I guess I'll just ask next spring and, if they refuse, I'll come back when the battery drops under 80% hoping they will still have replacement parts.

I've also considered "upgrading" to a 2015, but IMHO it's not really worth it..
Where I live (Italy) the 15" from 2015 is still crazy expensive: I'd lose 150/200€ just for the exchange and I'd probably have to replace the battery anyway because it would still be a 4/5 years old machine (meaning another extra 209€).
Furthermore the 2015 has the exact same hardware as my 2014 (except for the trackpad) and I'm pretty sure that the next 13" base model with 10th gen chip will outperform it (hopefully at a reasonable price).
I don't even consider the 2016-2019 models because of their goddamn unreliable keyboards.
The 2019 MacBook Pro has a much better keyboard because it uses the old way of their Blue-Tooth keyboard. So what was old is new again, bye bye butterfly keyboards that caused so much trouble!
 

macintoshmac

macrumors 68040
May 13, 2010
3,217
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Just a counterpoint to the advice to replace the battery right away before vintage status occurs:

Apple is still offering battery replacements for the 2012 rMBP (the very first Retina MBP) "while supplies last." That model went vintage over 18 months ago. There's a good chance that the 2014 MBP will similarly get an extended window of time, so I personally wouldn't rush to replace a battery that was still meeting my needs, because the sooner you replace it the sooner the new battery will start to wear out.

Of course, that depends on your comfort level of accepting an alternative solution in the (IMHO unlikely) event that Apple cuts off battery replacements right away. Alternatives include iFixit or eBay (do it yourself), third party repair shops, external battery, selling and upgrading to a new(er) laptop, etc.
This is good news, though in my country the day 2011 MBP was declared vintage, I called up my authorised service centre and they refused to replace my battery telling me that it has become vintage. The point being, why take chances, and why delay peace of mind for a year more?
 
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Sangeppato

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Jun 2, 2019
18
4
The 2019 MacBook Pro has a much better keyboard because it uses the old way of their Blue-Tooth keyboard. So what was old is new again, bye bye butterfly keyboards that caused so much trouble!
Yeah I know and I'm very happy about it.
I'm still a university student so I can't afford a 16", but I'm sure the next 13" base model will be very interesting (it should be even more powerful than my current 15"), hopefully they'll maintain the same price just like they did with the bigger model..

Anyway my plan is to keep my 2014 until I'll end my studies, it's still a very capable and modern machine IMHO
 

satcomer

macrumors 603
Feb 19, 2008
6,398
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The Finger Lakes Region
Yeah I know and I'm very happy about it.
I'm still a university student so I can't afford a 16", but I'm sure the next 13" base model will be very interesting (it should be even more powerful than my current 15"), hopefully they'll maintain the same price just like they did with the bigger model..

Anyway my plan is to keep my 2014 until I'll end my studies, it's still a very capable and modern machine IMHO
Then look at these MacSales Install Videos to see your upgrade path could go!
 

bunnspecial

macrumors 604
May 3, 2014
6,790
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Kentucky
Just a few points:

1. As a buyer of many, many used Macs and also replacement batteries, I have almost zero faith in generic Ebay batteries. In fact, just the other day, I pulled out my MBP 6,1(2010 17") that was sold to me with a new $30 Ebay battery. I hadn't used the computer in a couple of months, and when I pulled it out it wouldn't sit flat or close. A closer look showed the trackpad bulging out. All of those are textbook swollen battery, which is something genuine Apple batteries aren't immune to but are less susceptible.

2. NewerTech batteries are as good if not better than genuine Apple batteries. I have a pile of them ranging from PowerPC era batteries up through removable Intel and screwed-in Intel(which are a bit of a different beast from the glued in MBP batteries). They are a reputable company that makes "real capacities" generally higher than Apple batteries and actually stand behind their warranty-I've had to collect on it before, and they replaced the battery with no fuss. You will pay plenty for them. The last I bought was for a 2012 MBA, and I think it was ~$90. For computers with replaceable or screwed in batteries, $80-120 is the norm depending on the specific computer. Most savvy used Mac buyers won't devalue a computer for a NewerTech battery. Considering that they're sold through Other World Computing, which is also held in high esteem, there's no real question about their quality.

3. If you're worried about battery availability and want to insist on an out of warranty replacement from Apple, I'd advise waiting until as close as you realistically can to the end of the model being "current." This lets you maximize your time with your current battery, which sounds like it's performing acceptably, and also get as much as you can out of the next battery.
 

Sangeppato

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Jun 2, 2019
18
4
Then look at these MacSales Install Videos to see your upgrade path could go!
Thanks! Yes I've seen many videos on YouTube and a friend of mine has replaced his rMBP battery himself without any problem using a thread.. I think I'll try that method if I'll have to do the job myself.

Just a few points:

1. As a buyer of many, many used Macs and also replacement batteries, I have almost zero faith in generic Ebay batteries. In fact, just the other day, I pulled out my MBP 6,1(2010 17") that was sold to me with a new $30 Ebay battery. I hadn't used the computer in a couple of months, and when I pulled it out it wouldn't sit flat or close. A closer look showed the trackpad bulging out. All of those are textbook swollen battery, which is something genuine Apple batteries aren't immune to but are less susceptible.

2. NewerTech batteries are as good if not better than genuine Apple batteries. I have a pile of them ranging from PowerPC era batteries up through removable Intel and screwed-in Intel(which are a bit of a different beast from the glued in MBP batteries). They are a reputable company that makes "real capacities" generally higher than Apple batteries and actually stand behind their warranty-I've had to collect on it before, and they replaced the battery with no fuss. You will pay plenty for them. The last I bought was for a 2012 MBA, and I think it was ~$90. For computers with replaceable or screwed in batteries, $80-120 is the norm depending on the specific computer. Most savvy used Mac buyers won't devalue a computer for a NewerTech battery. Considering that they're sold through Other World Computing, which is also held in high esteem, there's no real question about their quality.

3. If you're worried about battery availability and want to insist on an out of warranty replacement from Apple, I'd advise waiting until as close as you realistically can to the end of the model being "current." This lets you maximize your time with your current battery, which sounds like it's performing acceptably, and also get as much as you can out of the next battery.
Thank you.
I'll try to get a replacement battery next spring, when the 2014 will become "vintage", just as you have suggested.
I've read good things about NewerTech batteries and I've heard that iFixit batteries are generally good as well (in some rare cases they will even send OEM batteries and they offer a very solid customer support). What I don't love about the NewerTech batteries for the Retinas is that they have a different design compared to the original/iFixit ones, so they don't fit as nicely and they look a bit harder to detach and remove..