Sudden battery drain on new Series 4 watch

mdhaus72

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Dec 29, 2018
23
18
I just bought a new Series 4 Space Black Stainless Steel watch about 3-and-a-half weeks ago. Every day when I go to bed, the watch's battery has been at about 60-65% remaining when I take it off at around midnight or perhaps later.

Today, right before a meeting at work at 3 PM, I happened to look at the battery level and it was already down to 46% for some reason! I cleared out the apps that were in memory....But there weren't many things in there and nothing that isn't normally present. I then restarted both the watch and the iPhone and checked for an update to the watch OS. It said that the new update was available...so I installed it and then let it charge all the way up to 100%.

I restarted the watch a final time before I put it on and then began keeping an eye on it. Exactly two hours later, it was still at 100% power....It had received a couple of text messages passed through the iPhone in that time. I checked again about 14 minutes later from that two-hour time frame and it had finally dropped down to 99%.

That was 20 minutes ago...I just checked and it's now at 98%. That's not bad, since a drop of 1% each 20-minutes would be 3% an hour, which would translate to about 50% left after 17 hours...although it has never before gotten that low. I also got two full hours with it being at full charge in this experiment...So that would impact the longevity a bit.

So what do you think? Was it just a one-time glitch? Has anyone had this happen before? I'm still under warranty and I also bought Apple Care, so I'm not worried in that regard....I'm just trying to figure out what may have gone wrong.

If the battery went two full hours without losing a single percent off of 100, I can't imagine it's a defective battery...Or am I wrong?
 

waw74

macrumors 68040
May 27, 2008
3,157
189
Sometimes things just get messed up in software in the watch.
If it happens again, or if you're bored,
unpair and re-pair the watch in the app on your phone.

You won't lose any data, as it's backed up when you unpair.
it can take a couple hours to complete though, during which your watch will be unusable.

My s0 randomly did that a couple years back, this cleared it right up.

98% of the time someone on the board has a watch that acting up and doing ___(odd thing)___, this has fixed it.
 
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Starship67

Suspended
Oct 28, 2017
959
1,273
LA
Did you just update to 5.1.3 Today? If so it will normalize again after a couple days. If not just a software anomaly and will probably again normalize in a few days. Barring all of that, if it doesn't then I would un-pair and re-pair.
 
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mdhaus72

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Dec 29, 2018
23
18
Did you just update to 5.1.3 Today? If so it will normalize again after a couple days. If not just a software anomaly and will probably again normalize in a few days. Barring all of that, if it doesn't then I would un-pair and re-pair.
I did indeed do the update....But I did it after I already had noticed the battery was lower then expected.

It's now 10:50 PM and my battery level is 89%. So in 6 hours and 25 minutes, the battery has gone down 11%. No heavy use....just a handful of text messages. That seems to be pretty much on-track with what I typically get, I guess, depending on use.
 

WilliamG

macrumors G3
Mar 29, 2008
8,990
2,401
Seattle
I did indeed do the update....But I did it after I already had noticed the battery was lower then expected.

It's now 10:50 PM and my battery level is 89%. So in 6 hours and 25 minutes, the battery has gone down 11%. No heavy use....just a handful of text messages. That seems to be pretty much on-track with what I typically get, I guess, depending on use.
I wouldn’t sweat it. I’ve definitely had it happen to me on my Watch a handful of times. Sometimes an app just hogs battery and that’s the way it goes. I don’t even have any apps on my Watch bar Apple’s own, so I just shrug, reboot the Watch and carry on.
 

billhelm

macrumors regular
Aug 1, 2010
221
79
It’s happened to me as well a few times on both S2 and S4 models. I wouldn’t sweat it.
 

Fuchal

macrumors 68020
Sep 30, 2003
2,413
650
My S4 has also had suspiciously lower battery life within the past 2 weeks, but it seems to be okay today post-update. Perhaps it just needed a fresh reboot.
 
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ftaok

macrumors 603
Jan 23, 2002
6,145
1,163
East Coast
So what do you think? Was it just a one-time glitch? Has anyone had this happen before? I'm still under warranty and I also bought Apple Care, so I'm not worried in that regard....I'm just trying to figure out what may have gone wrong.
Whenever I get weird battery issues, the first place I check is the battery usage info. For the AW, you check this in the Watch app. Go to General>Usage and check the Usage and Standby times. For me, the Usage is typically about 15-20% of the Standby time. I'm looking right now and I have 38 for Usage and 4h55m for Standby.

If your Usage is very close to the Standby, then you likely have an app that isn't letting go. Do a restart and that should clear up.

Sometimes things just get messed up in software in the watch.
If it happens again, or if you're bored,
unpair and re-pair the watch in the app on your phone.

You won't lose any data, as it's backed up when you unpair.
un-pairing the AW should be a last resort. While you won't lose any critical data, you will lose your calibration data. For those who use their AW's for fitness (walking and running), keep in mind that you'll need to re-calibrate your watch with an outdoor run (or walk). In the winter, that can be a huge PITA, so if you do go down the un-pair route, try planning it with some good weather.
 

MadeTheSwitch

macrumors 6502a
Apr 20, 2009
832
15,204
I had this problem once so far since getting my watch for Christmas. It dies over ight which is a problem for me as I like to track my sleep. So I was not very happy. I think that Apple’s software should take note of an app that is using an abnormally high amount of battery, especially if you are at rest with no other watch activity going on. And then the OS should take action and correct that.
 

penajmz

macrumors 68040
Sep 11, 2008
3,761
3,903
New York City
Interesting. This just happened to me yesterday, my watch drained all the way down to 15% within a few hours without me even using it. Very random. I’ll see what happens today.
 

James.K.Polk

macrumors 6502a
Aug 31, 2015
756
265
Interesting. This just happened to me yesterday, my watch drained all the way down to 15% within a few hours without me even using it. Very random. I’ll see what happens today.
This morning I went 100%-to-75% in ~2 hours. Very weird. Hoping (and assuming) it's just the software and is fixed soon.
 

MacModMachine

macrumors 68020
Apr 3, 2009
2,248
131
Canada
I just bought a new Series 4 Space Black Stainless Steel watch about 3-and-a-half weeks ago. Every day when I go to bed, the watch's battery has been at about 60-65% remaining when I take it off at around midnight or perhaps later.

Today, right before a meeting at work at 3 PM, I happened to look at the battery level and it was already down to 46% for some reason! I cleared out the apps that were in memory....But there weren't many things in there and nothing that isn't normally present. I then restarted both the watch and the iPhone and checked for an update to the watch OS. It said that the new update was available...so I installed it and then let it charge all the way up to 100%.

I restarted the watch a final time before I put it on and then began keeping an eye on it. Exactly two hours later, it was still at 100% power....It had received a couple of text messages passed through the iPhone in that time. I checked again about 14 minutes later from that two-hour time frame and it had finally dropped down to 99%.

That was 20 minutes ago...I just checked and it's now at 98%. That's not bad, since a drop of 1% each 20-minutes would be 3% an hour, which would translate to about 50% left after 17 hours...although it has never before gotten that low. I also got two full hours with it being at full charge in this experiment...So that would impact the longevity a bit.

So what do you think? Was it just a one-time glitch? Has anyone had this happen before? I'm still under warranty and I also bought Apple Care, so I'm not worried in that regard....I'm just trying to figure out what may have gone wrong.

If the battery went two full hours without losing a single percent off of 100, I can't imagine it's a defective battery...Or am I wrong?

I just posted in another thread , I'm having this exact same issue. works fine some nights....some nights I loose on average 10% per hour tracking sleep....only happened since 5.1.3
 

ds2000

macrumors 6502
May 24, 2012
298
139
I've had this too. Several times. I've unpaired and repaired it twice, that fixes the issue for a short while but it soon returns. It's my second Apple watch and unless a fix for this appears it'll be my last.
 

GeorgePHN

macrumors newbie
Jul 1, 2019
1
0
I also have a relatively new series 4 stainless steel. I have found two or three times now that the battery just drains to nothing having been 100% just hours before. It seems rather random but has now occurred three times and left me with no battery until I get home. Any clues?
I just bought a new Series 4 Space Black Stainless Steel watch about 3-and-a-half weeks ago. Every day when I go to bed, the watch's battery has been at about 60-65% remaining when I take it off at around midnight or perhaps later.

Today, right before a meeting at work at 3 PM, I happened to look at the battery level and it was already down to 46% for some reason! I cleared out the apps that were in memory....But there weren't many things in there and nothing that isn't normally present. I then restarted both the watch and the iPhone and checked for an update to the watch OS. It said that the new update was available...so I installed it and then let it charge all the way up to 100%.

I restarted the watch a final time before I put it on and then began keeping an eye on it. Exactly two hours later, it was still at 100% power....It had received a couple of text messages passed through the iPhone in that time. I checked again about 14 minutes later from that two-hour time frame and it had finally dropped down to 99%.

That was 20 minutes ago...I just checked and it's now at 98%. That's not bad, since a drop of 1% each 20-minutes would be 3% an hour, which would translate to about 50% left after 17 hours...although it has never before gotten that low. I also got two full hours with it being at full charge in this experiment...So that would impact the longevity a bit.

So what do you think? Was it just a one-time glitch? Has anyone had this happen before? I'm still under warranty and I also bought Apple Care, so I'm not worried in that regard....I'm just trying to figure out what may have gone wrong.

If the battery went two full hours without losing a single percent off of 100, I can't imagine it's a defective battery...Or am I wrong?
 

Johnny365

macrumors 6502a
Nov 30, 2015
649
290
I have this problem every couple of days, when at work. Usually I will drain it to about 79-81%, but other days it is down to 41% doing the same exact thing, and always paired to my iPhone.
 

Seanm87

macrumors 6502
Oct 10, 2014
413
444
I use to have this problem I turned the watch off and on again and it fixed it.
 

macgabe

macrumors 6502
Dec 29, 2012
271
207
Mine's usually on 30% at end of day - it depends on what you do in the day. If I'm using Workout outdoors and listening to music that seems to get through battery much faster. If I stay in all day on wifi and don't use it, maybe 50% battery. Never connected SIM but imagine that would really burn through the battery too.
 

HelloMikee

macrumors 6502a
Jun 16, 2009
887
219
San Diego
Interesting. Just bought an AW Series 4 SS and went to google to search about battery drain and this thread popped up. Put the watch on at 7am. It's 11am and battery is at 60% without doing anything other than look at the watch a few times. Plan to hit the gym after work but not sure it will even make it :(
 

ftaok

macrumors 603
Jan 23, 2002
6,145
1,163
East Coast
Interesting. Just bought an AW Series 4 SS and went to google to search about battery drain and this thread popped up. Put the watch on at 7am. It's 11am and battery is at 60% without doing anything other than look at the watch a few times. Plan to hit the gym after work but not sure it will even make it :(
Does this happen every day, or is it the first time it's happened. If it just started happening, check to see what your Usage and Standby times are. If they're equal or close to equal, it probably means you have an app that isn't behaving. I full restart should fix it.

Another thing to look for is which apps do you have set to allow for background app refresh. I typically have everything set to off, unless I absolutely need it. Right now, I have Activity, Alarms, Calendar, Reminders, Slopes, and iSmoothRun set ON. Everything else is OFF.
 

ds2000

macrumors 6502
May 24, 2012
298
139
Interesting. Just bought an AW Series 4 SS and went to google to search about battery drain and this thread popped up. Put the watch on at 7am. It's 11am and battery is at 60% without doing anything other than look at the watch a few times. Plan to hit the gym after work but not sure it will even make it :(
Try closing all the apps and / or restarting it. If that fails re-pair it with your phone. Mine has been behaving again recently. Yesterday I did a 2 hour cycle to work running strava on the watch and then walked a couple of km at the end of the day. Battery was still over 50% at the end of the day.
 

SunnyFL

macrumors regular
Jul 12, 2010
194
0
I installed the August Home App on mine a week ago for my lock and thought that was the problem but after reading this not so sure. I would go to bed at 100 and wake at 89-91 now for the past several mornings its high 50's to 60 remainings and ive been using autosleep since the watch was new
 

Significant1

macrumors 6502a
Dec 20, 2014
710
210
In a similar thread I read that disabling location access for weather should help and so fare it looks very very promising. Only down 10% in 2,5 hours and that includes 30minutes workout using the majority of battery. That is an 40mm, which also had extremely poor battery life. It was briefly better by unpair/pair, but that didn't stick.
 

jabbok

macrumors member
Feb 22, 2009
51
26
I have the Series 4 SS I had a similar experience the other day took it off the charger it's at 100% about 30 mins. later it died put it back on the charger but it was having trouble charging past about 4-7% used a different charger same thing, called apple support went through all the usual things couldn't get it to do anything so they said they would replace it or I could send it in for repair. I was able to finally get it charged back up but it took all day not sure why now it seems to be working fine.
Apple did send a replacement so I will replace it as I don't have any idea why it failed, the watch is about 10 months old never been in water, never dropped.