Why Sierra is so bad for MBA battery?

Discussion in 'MacBook Air' started by StoneJack, Apr 13, 2017.

  1. StoneJack macrumors 65816

    StoneJack

    Joined:
    Dec 19, 2009
    #1
    My battery is 85% healthy, 2013 11 inch MBA, only 250 cycles. In El Capitan, used to have up to 8 hours of battery life, battery health was also 93% or so. After Sierra install, the battery health in a month worsened to 85%, battery work time fell to 4-5 hours. Tried a new fresh Sierra install, PRAM and SMC reset - nothing helps to recover the battery health.

    So I wonder why Sierra shortens the battery time and aggravates its health, and is there any remedy to it, except installing El Capitan?
     
  2. kohlson macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Apr 23, 2010
    #2
    Check to see if there are any apps/processes that are using too much energy. Right-click on the battery icon - there's a line that will highlight any apps that are using excessive power; or, "No Apps..." if none. Also, in the Activity Monitor, see is any there are any processes using too much every in the Energy tab.
    FWIW my wife's 2012 13-in MBA needed a battery replacement (got a warning). She primarily runs it plugged in at work. Ut had 300-ish cycles. OTOH, our daughter's 2011 MBA ran for 1000+ cycles - she only plugged hers in when down to the last 10%.
     
  3. Biscotti macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jun 25, 2008
    #3
    I also saw a huge drop in battery after Sierra. I had just replaced my battery too right before Sierra came out and was seeing 6+ hours easily, and ~2 to 2.5 after Sierra.

    I think Sierra may be 1) Be more processor intensive so our older processor stress more 2) Be more graphically intensive 3) iCloud Drive - uploads everything and changes are always uploading/downloading/pinging.

    I agree, my battery life sucks (-15% battery life in 20 mins typing this reply on and off).
     
  4. Stefan johansson macrumors 65816

    Stefan johansson

    Joined:
    Apr 13, 2017
    Location:
    Sweden
    #4
    Another reason not to buy a MacBook Air... Fortunately,my MBP has ok battery capacity.
     
  5. StoneJack thread starter macrumors 65816

    StoneJack

    Joined:
    Dec 19, 2009
    #5

    I am downloading El Capitan again and will reinstall clean El Capitan. I don't know whats different but Sierra hasn't been good to my MBA. For my Macbook pro 2016, which still doesn't get much use, Sierra is probably a better choice. After installing EL Capitan, I will share the battery life changes.
     
  6. StoneJack thread starter macrumors 65816

    StoneJack

    Joined:
    Dec 19, 2009
    #6
    So I installed (downgraded) to El Capitan. Guess what? Battery life for first time in months showed 10 hours (under Sierra the max was 6 hours) and even battery health indicator improved a little bit (from 84 to 87%). Sierra is definitely something to avoid for MBA 2013 (not sure about other releases).
     
  7. grandIOSe macrumors member

    Joined:
    Sep 17, 2017
    Location:
    Buenos Aires
    #7
    I just upgraded to High Sierra from Yosemite on my MBA (Early 2015) model and for the age, the battery seems to be doing OK. I am sitting in a cafe here in Buenos Aires, and my iPhone 7 has been plugged in to the USB for 40 minutes charging and I am at 87%. I am sure the battery would be at 90% plus if it wasn't for the iPhone being plugged in. My iPhone was a 1% and it's now at 54%. So it sucked a lot of juice out of the battery.
     
  8. Biscotti macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jun 25, 2008
    #8
    How was the process? I have been running High Sierra for a while now, since it's release.

    Did you have any trouble with Apps?
    Did you have any issues downgrading?

    While my Battery Life is just OK, the 2011 MBA processor struggles so hard on High Sierra but would likely be ok On El Cap.
     
  9. StoneJack thread starter macrumors 65816

    StoneJack

    Joined:
    Dec 19, 2009
    #9
    Can't say because I no longer own the MBA - I moved to MBP 2016, so no information
     

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