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best way to take care of your battery?

Discussion in 'Apple and Mac OS X' started by robertosee, Aug 6, 2007.

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  1. robertosee

    robertosee Notebook Consultant

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    I was just wondering, what's the best way on taking care of your laptop battery... normally, It's sitting on my desk... should I take out the battery or just leave it while the adopter is plugged? what's your take????
     
  2. Sam

    Sam Notebook Virtuoso

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    The best way to take care of your battery is to not use it whenever its not necessary. When you're aren't going to be moving around for a while (say all day), take out the battery and keep it somewhere that has a cool temperature. If you don't plan to use the battery for a long time (say a week or longer), drain the battery down to 40% before taking it out and storing it somewhere cool.

    Keeping charge cycles as low as possible is a good thing. If you don't need to use the battery don't, use AC power. The MacBook and MacBook Pro battery will take approximately 300 cycles to drop down to 80% battery health.

    Also, calibrate your battery every now and then. Say every month or so.
     
  3. robertosee

    robertosee Notebook Consultant

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    so how do I calibrate my battery? what's the process of doing that?

    and when you mentioned I should store it in a cool place... where? I think I've read somewhere before to put it in the fridge or something...
     
  4. Sam

    Sam Notebook Virtuoso

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    You could put it in the fridge. It wouldn't hurt. Unless something spills on it :p. I don't think you need to put it into a fridge. Just leave it in a cupboard or on your desk.

    Calibrating a battery sounds very complicated :p, but its a simple task: just use your notebook on battery until the Mac sleeps by itself because there's too little power left. When your MacBook Pro reaches about 5% battery left, it will sleep by itself so it doesn't run out of power completely. Don't worry, no data has been lost, the MBP just went to Sleep. When that happens plug the power cord back to the MBP and charge the battery completely. You just calibrated the battery.
     
  5. vaio_boi

    vaio_boi Notebook Evangelist

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    So when the battery is fully charged and plugged in, is it just powering from the AC adapter and the battery is not being used?
     
  6. Sam

    Sam Notebook Virtuoso

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    Yes. If the light on the MagSafe cord is green, then its not charging the battery. If its red its charging.

    But a small amount of the liquids in the battery is still being "charged" slightly when you have the power cord connected and 100% charge. It won't overheat your laptop or anything, but over time it will cause the battery to drain faster. Its not very significant though, so don't freak out over taking out the battery every single second you're not moving around. Just if you know you're not going to be moving around for a long time, like a day or two, taking out the battery doesn't hurt.
     
  7. imMACulate

    imMACulate Notebook Evangelist

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    so could I take the battery out when I'm running on AC power and then just put it back in whenever I need to move around a bit? Of course I mean the battery is fully charged though
     
  8. Sam

    Sam Notebook Virtuoso

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    Yes, that is perfectly fine. It will also help the battery because its not subject to the heat from the notebook too. If you plan to leave the battery out for a long time though, like a week or more, drain the battery to 40% before taking it out.
     
  9. FRoStY1

    FRoStY1 Notebook Enthusiast

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    leave the batter plugged in, it does no harm to the battery or your computer. Also having the battery in means your CPU's wont be down-clocked to 1ghz (download coreduotemp and you''ll see what I mean)> Leaving the battery in is the best thing to do, there is no need to take it out as dust could possibly get in.

    Having your battery fully charged while its plugged in still, wont harm your computer or battery, as once its fully charged the computer knows this and bybasses it, making it like there is no battery, but you still retain your speeds.
     
  10. ltcommander_data

    ltcommander_data Notebook Deity

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    My understanding is that the MBP doesn't trickle charge. When it is fully charged, the charger actually stops charging. The laptop will run on AC, and the battery even though it isn't under load will naturally slowly lose power. When it drops to 95%, the battery will be charged to full again. I believe this avoids those constant charging problems for the battery.
     
  11. Sam

    Sam Notebook Virtuoso

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    You're right, it doesn't. What I meant was I advise to take out the battery not because it might overcharge, but because of the heat from the laptop. The battery begins charging at (I think its) 96% charge, and between 96-100% it won't charge.
     
  12. m1ti

    m1ti Notebook Enthusiast

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    You don't want to do that if you want full performance when on AC power because the processor speed is reduced if you remove the battery even though it is plugged in.

    http://docs.info.apple.com/article.html?artnum=305336
     
  13. Sam

    Sam Notebook Virtuoso

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    Yes, you are right, the processors underclock a bit when on just AC power. They do this so that your Mac will never shut down because there's not enough power going through to power the processors.

    I apologize if I didn't make it clear to the original poster (robertosee). But anyways, for most common tasks (like running Safari with iTunes and an IM client) the Mac with the battery taken out will still do those tasks fine. If you notice most of the time the processors are only 10-15% used in normal tasks.
     
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