Prolonging Alienware Laptop Battery Life

Discussion in 'Alienware' started by Alien FlyBoy, Jan 4, 2010.

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  1. Alien FlyBoy

    Alien FlyBoy Notebook Consultant

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    Tried the search, but "remove battery when on AC" and the likes was to generic to give som results.

    What do you guys say?

    Do we remove the battery when running on AC, or is that myth put to rest?
     
  2. BatBoy

    BatBoy Notebook Nobel Laureate

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    Its personal preference. Since the Inspiron E1705 (XPS M1730 and now AW M17x), I have never removed a battery except when the charge was depleted and I needed to switch to my backup batt. While on AC, the battery stays in my system.

    You can leave it in 24x7 or remove it. The choice is yours. LI-ION batts have a "#of charge cycles". Once you reach/surpass that total# of charge cycles is when you start to have issues. Partial recharges are better over a full depleted charge cycle (IMO).

    Again, its your choice. There are countless articles concerning LI-ION laptop battery 'care' on the net. Best to do some research before deciding.
     
  3. WaR

    WaR Notebook Virtuoso

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    Yes, and also doesn't Fn+F2 make it so the system will ignore the battery?
     
  4. ryanwhite123

    ryanwhite123 Notebook Consultant

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    Hi All,

    So i've had my M11xr2 since June, and i use batterybar pro to monitor my power stats.

    Around two weeks ago my battery wear was at 0, capacity 64,000mwh, then it went up to 0.3% battery wear, 0.7% a few days later, and within the past few hours it has just jumped up from 0.7% to 2.1%.

    Is battery bar a reliable program to monitor battery wear? I run my battery right down every couple of weeks, so it should be quite healthy. Is there any way to calibrate the battery to ensure that this is infact the correct number?

    I'm not sure if this is a fault, or just a delay in batterybar updating. Any advice would be appreciated.

    Thanks in advance! :)
     
  5. BatBoy

    BatBoy Notebook Nobel Laureate

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    I would say this is your problem - as I understand it, you should avoid depleting the battery as this eats away at the total# of charge cycles. This is not like the old style notebook batts where you could recondition them - think memory batts.

    Battery 'usage' is a debated topic. Some will cite articles from years past as fact. In the end, do the research, view the info out there and then draw your own conclusions.

    FWIW, I leave my batts in the lappies 24x7 - on battery or AC power. I have yet to have a battery fail on me or show a reduced charge as a result. Been doing this since the old Dell E1705 and XPS M1710 days. I gave a new battery to my sister for use in her Inspiron. She uses the system quite a bit on battery. Instead of plugging it in while sitting on their couch, she would let it run down. Well, here it is 6 months later and that battery is now toast.

    Again, do the research and draw your own conclusions. :)
     
  6. ryanwhite123

    ryanwhite123 Notebook Consultant

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    batboy, thanks for the reply. I thought that manufacturers advised customers to deplete their batteries on a regular basis, usually monthly? From what you have said, its best not to do that? I thought that would affect the battery length/ performance if it wasnt drained on a regular basis?
     
  7. GNandGS

    GNandGS Notebook Deity

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    Batteries have a shelf life even if you do not use them. Im in the camp of "do not drain down". Use it normally... if your situation is such that you need to use all the power you have then go for it but otherwise just leave plugged in.

    My thinking is this is why you see the batt charge disable options.
     
  8. some guy

    some guy Modding Addict

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    the only reason you should deep discharge your battery is for calabration. which you only need to do once.

    im not going to post links for proof or anything but ive talked to a few chemical engys and the newer chemistry in the newer batts dont like deep discharges and this actually reduces the number of cycles or lenght of cycles you will get out of it. unlike the older batts that needed full charges and discharges for better "battery memory"
     
  9. BatBoy

    BatBoy Notebook Nobel Laureate

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    Correct - I would not suggest doing this.

    If you happen to locate any material on the dell site which states the battery should be depleted monthly, please post or PM me the link. I would be very interested to see this type of statement/documentation - to understand 'why' its 'advised'.

    ++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

    We have another thread on this - see this thread for additional discussion.

    http://forum.notebookreview.com/alienware-m11x/513598-should-i-drain-battery.html
     
  10. ryanwhite123

    ryanwhite123 Notebook Consultant

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    Hi All,

    Thanks for all the advice that you have offered. After spending an hour doing research on google last night, it seems that modern laptop batteries should never be fully discharged as it kills the cells in the battery, resulting in reduced capacity and increased levels of battery wear.

    A full discharge should only ever be done on old batteries, 3/4 years +, the ones with a memory chip in them which i guess would help to calibrate the battery if it wasnt performing properly.

    My battery wear is 2.1% according to battery bar, with the total capacity originally 64,530mwh. I only seem to get around 4 hours out of my battery though.

    Hopefully my findings and the advice of others will help people to avoid discharging there battery as much as i have!

    Also, apparently leaving your battery on the AC adapter is fine :)
     
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