Should the battery health concern me? - 87% battery health on a 2-week old MacBook

Discussion in 'MacBook' started by Warbrain, May 21, 2008.

  1. Warbrain macrumors 603

    Warbrain

    Joined:
    Jun 28, 2004
    Location:
    Chicago, IL
    #1
    I purchased my MacBook just 2 weeks ago. The battery health was looking good until today...

    I open up Dashboard and it's reading 87% of it's health. This is a major change from the 99% I was at.

    I'm going to calibrate today/tonight to see if it makes a difference and if it's just reading wrong but at what point do you all think it would be acceptable for me to take the battery to the Apple store and get it replaced?
     
  2. SFStateStudent macrumors 604

    SFStateStudent

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    #2
    Calibrate it and you should be OK. You can download iStat Pro, smcFanControl, and CoconutBattery, these definitely help you to monitor the life of your MB. My BlackBook went to 95% mAh=5,136 immediately after my first use, then did the calibration and it returned to 100% mAh=5407. I've noticed the mAh to be between the original 5407 - 5422, and right now it's at 5418. Good luck. :cool:
     
  3. Warbrain thread starter macrumors 603

    Warbrain

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    #3
    Yea, that's what I mean when I opened up Dashboard...

    I'm only asking because this is my first Intel-based Mac - used an iBook for the last three years and had numerous iMacs, Performas, and IIc throughout the ages - and I'm a bit in the dark.

    Hopefully the calibration will help. Too bad it's such a long process.
     
  4. SFStateStudent macrumors 604

    SFStateStudent

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  5. Warbrain thread starter macrumors 603

    Warbrain

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    #5
    Base model - 2.1 GHz, stock 1 GB of RAM - upgraded to 2 GB on Monday, Combo drive...

    iBook suddenly died and I needed a computer immediately. A 1000 dollar laptop was what I could afford at the time.
     
  6. Warbrain thread starter macrumors 603

    Warbrain

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    #6
    Health has dropped in the last five minutes to 85%. Seems like something might be wonky...
     
  7. SFStateStudent macrumors 604

    SFStateStudent

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    #7
    Also depends on what apps you are running. Surfing the internet will use up a bunch of juice, working with photoshop, illustrator, or InDesign can eat up even more if you have 5-6 windows up and running at the same time.

    If it doesn't get better, give Apple Support a call:

    U.S. iPod and Mac technical support: 1-800-APL-CARE (1-800-275-2273)

    They can pretty much walk you through it, or just do a Apple Store visit for hands-on assistance. :cool:
     
  8. Warbrain thread starter macrumors 603

    Warbrain

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    #8
    This is the health not the real-world battery life. Health shouldn't fluctuate.

    Now it just jumped back to 97% of health. Maybe it just had a hiccup. I'm going to see what it does and calibrate if it goes wonky again.
     
  9. logana macrumors 65816

    logana

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    Location:
    Scotland
    #9
    Are you getting the battery health from the iStat widget - if so it should be 100% with a 2 week old battery.

    How many cycles is iStat reporting ?
     
  10. Warbrain thread starter macrumors 603

    Warbrain

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    #10
    9 cycles. And it bounced back to 98% just now.
     
  11. SFStateStudent macrumors 604

    SFStateStudent

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    #11
    I see, you're right. :cool:
     
  12. Warbrain thread starter macrumors 603

    Warbrain

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    #12
    Health just dropped back down to 90%. It's fluctuating bad. I'm going to have to calibrate this.
     
  13. logana macrumors 65816

    logana

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    #13
    I have never "needed" to calibrate a MacBook battery and the info on iStat always makes sense.

    There would appear to be a problem with your battery - give Apple a call.

    Health should be 100% on a battery a couple of weeks old.
     
  14. Warbrain thread starter macrumors 603

    Warbrain

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    #14
    Not necessarily at 100% when just 2 weeks old. Remember, the purchase of the computer is a few weeks after it was made and the battery was put in so I expect it to not be perfect but this is too much of a sudden change all the time.

    Calibration is a necessary thing to be done. Your battery may be reading the capacity wrong because you never calibrate.

    I'm not going to call Apple until I know for sure that it's screwing up. Calibration tonight, check it out tomorrow.
     
  15. DoFoT9 macrumors P6

    DoFoT9

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    #15
    let it run completely flat..so that it no longer sleeps.

    the battery is meant to fluctuate, and if it was going from 100%-95% then that would be ok, but because it is going back to 85% i would seriously consider asking for a replacement.

    however, wait until your calibration and see how that goes.
     
  16. Warbrain thread starter macrumors 603

    Warbrain

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    #16
    Again, you're talking about the remaining battery charge. I'm talking about the battery health. Two different things.

    Health is the remaining total capacity. Charge is how much power is remaining in the battery after it charged.

    I know it's supposed to fluctuate in its charge. But the health is supposed to be consistent.

    Sorry, but understand what my problem is before offering suggestions.
     
  17. DoFoT9 macrumors P6

    DoFoT9

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    #17
    lol...


    i AM talking about battery health.

    read my post carefully... to calibrate let the battery charge run completely flat, this will help the battery health return to the highest amount possible.

    battery health does fluctuate a certain % when using the battery without mains power. the problem i see with yours is that it is waaayyyy below the 2week average (which is pretty much still on 99%-100%.)
     
  18. Warbrain thread starter macrumors 603

    Warbrain

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    #18
    You never once used the word health. By not doing so you suggested you were talking about the battery charge.

    Battery health should never fluctuate when running off the battery. The only time a reading should change is when it is calibrated or there are problems and it drops in the middle of a cycle. But there is no reason for the health to fluctuate back and forth.
     
  19. DoFoT9 macrumors P6

    DoFoT9

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    #19
    well i am sorry, but i assumed that youd hitch onto what i was saying.

    battery health fluctuates a little when running off the battery. i experience this first hand. (we are talking ~5% here, not 15%).

    why dont you give apple a call and ask them what they think? im sure they will take it back.

    or just calibrate the thing
     
  20. Warbrain thread starter macrumors 603

    Warbrain

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    #20
    Calibration is going to occur before I take the battery in. If I can avoid a trip to an Apple store I will. Just a shame that it's a long process to calibrate.
     
  21. thejadedmonkey macrumors 604

    thejadedmonkey

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    Pa
    #21
    According to Coconutbattery, after 65 Loadcycles my MBP battery is at 93% capacity (health), 99% charge. However, if I run the battery down, it's not uncommon to see my capacity (health) around 75%/85%. I've even seen it as low as 65% when my charge was really low.

    You can't really tell how healthy the battery is until you have it fully charged, although I agree that the health should not be fluctuating at all. It should either be at 100%, or slowly lowering as the battery depletes, but always go back to 100%.
     
  22. DoFoT9 macrumors P6

    DoFoT9

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    #22
    ok thats a good idea. its not that long of a process is it?? just a night or so..

    yay that means i was right!!!! :eek::eek:
    i agree, the health shouldnt fluctuate when the battery is low on charge, it makes people assume different things. it must be a hardware error somewhere that the full capacity cant be read correctly when its low on charge. at least it goes back up.
     
  23. SFStateStudent macrumors 604

    SFStateStudent

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    #23
    My iStat says Health 100%, 4 cycle load, Charge 100%, and About this Mac says mAh: 5418 up from original 5407, Cycles: 4, and Fully Charged: Yes. Seems normal. :cool:
     
  24. Warbrain thread starter macrumors 603

    Warbrain

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    #24
    Now it's reading 99% health...makes me wonder if I should even calibrate it now...
     
  25. bigjnyc macrumors 603

    bigjnyc

    Joined:
    Apr 10, 2008
    #25
    I dont think calibrating it will hurt anything. mine has never dropped below 100% and i've had it over a month with 12 charge cycles. I calibrated it once.
     

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