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How to know when it’s time to replace your MacBook battery

by Felix Omondi

Your MacBook keeps dying on you at the most crucial time. The first thing that should come to your mind is the battery. Has your MacBook battery deteriorated so much that it is now time to change it? Find out how to know if it’s time to replace your MacBook battery by reading ahead.

As your MacBook ages, you will notice it doesn’t hold charge for as long as it used to. That should not be a surprise; batteries tend to lose their capacity to carry charge over time. The lesser the time the battery life last, the more the chances it will die on you at a very critical time.

The good thing with MacBooks, gauging correctly when the battery might die is easier than on other laptop brands. MacBooks come with a built-in utility that will tell you when you can expect the computer to self-shut-down because of low battery.

Check the Status of your battery

You can check the status of your battery by clicking the battery icon on the menu bar. Doing so will let you see either one of the following conditions:

Normal: Your battery health and performance is under normal conditions. You can expect reliable battery juice with consistent performance.

Replace Soon: Though the battery is functioning normally, it now holds less charge than it used to when it was new. Start making plans to acquire a new replacement battery.

Replace Now: Though still performing normally, the battery now holds significantly less charge that it used to when it was still new. It should serve you well without harming your computer though you are advised to replace it soon.

Service Battery: At this point, you should take your computer for service and have the battery changed. As the battery is not functioning normally, and it might be difficult to tell for how long it will hold charge. It may go kaput on you anytime.macbook battery.jpg


How to know the exact numbers of your battery’s charge cycle

Apple has done an impressive job in enabling you to know how much charge cycles is remaining for your battery. Apple says a new battery should serve you well for at least 1,000 charge cycles. One charge cycle to mean the time you take from a full recharge to the time it powers off due to low battery. That may take place in one sitting, or you can have it on, the off multiple times over some few days or even weeks; for the non-heavy users.

Your battery is designed to retain up to 80 percent of its original capacity at 1,000 complete charge cycle,” says Apple.

You should be using your MacBook reliably on battery very well past the 1,000th cycle. Though the performance and reliability will be downhill from there onwards. You can use the System Report tool to find out exactly how many charge cycles are remaining for your battery.

Hold down the Alt key and click the Apple icon in the upper-left corner. Choose System Report and on the left panel, click on Power. Under the Health Information, you should see the Cycle Count with figure showing how many charge cycle you have been through so far.MacBook battery

Have your battery changed by authorized service provider or Apple Store

Apple recommends you take your laptop to the Apple Store near you or a licensed service provider to service or replace your battery. It costs between $129 and $199.

If your laptop is still under warranty (still within one year from purchase date) or if you purchased the AppleCare protection plan, you can decide whether to replace the battery or the entire MacBook machine.

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