My sister just had an issue with her white Macbook (2008) where first it was saying “Replace Battery Soon,” and then it was saying “Replace Battery Now.”
Soon after it said to replace it now, it said that it was going to take 20 hours to recharge and was STUCK on 20 hours (the battery was no longer charging). When this happened, she tried unplugging the charger from her Macbook to see what happened, and it would just turn off right way (the screen would go black, all the lights would go out), as if the battery were dead.
This didn’t really make much sense, because she had just gotten a new battery a little over a year ago, and the program iStat Pro ( great FREE widget for your Mac’s Dashboard) said that the battery’s health was 98%.
So after trying different things, she decided to turn it ALL THE WAY OFF, and THEN charge it fully. This is what fixed it for her. You actually should do that EVERY TIME you drain the battery fully, which you should do ONCE A MONTH to keep your battery healthy.
Just in case you’re wondering, Apple says that you can get 400 cycles out of a battery, but that seems to be conservative, as her battery has completed 379 cycles and iStat Pro says its health is 97%, and iStat Pro says my battery has completed 430 cycles with a health percentage of 88% (see image below).
On top of that, her previous battery had completed 530 cycles before it went bad, so it seems as though both of our batteries have plenty of life left, although I do plan on buying a new Macbook Pro soon.
What didn’t help was she was charging her Macbook fully, unplugging the charger from it, and using it until the battery died, charging it back up again, using it until it died, etc. She never kept it plugged in after the battery was fully charged, which means she was quickly using up her “400” cycles, or however many is the accurate number of cycles that a Macbook battery will last. So it’s a good thing that this happened. Otherwise she was on track to use up her battery life quicker than normal.
To find out how many cycles your battery has used, download the widget, iStat Pro (it’s FREE), and install it. Then go into your Dashboard (the icon in the bottom left of your screen next to Finder), wait around 10 seconds of it to read your computer, and then it will give you all of the vital stats of your Macbook (check out the image above to see a screenshot).
So the two things we learned here are the following:
1. If your Macbook battery is not charging, then turn your Macbook ALL THE WAY OFF and then CHARGE IT ALL THE WAY UP. After it is fully charged, and the light on the charger (the part that is plugged in to your Macbook) is GREEN indicating that it is fully charged, then start up your Macbook, wait until it is fully booted, and then try unplugging the charger from the Macbook and see if that fixes your battery issue. Of course “your mileage may vary”, meaning this may not work for your situation, but it worked for my sister.
2. EVERY MONTH, you need to unplug the charger from your Macbook and use it until the battery dies. Then, when the battery dies, or right before it dies, TURN YOUR MACBOOK ALL THE WAY OFF and charge it until the charger light turns green, indicating that the battery is fully charged.
If you have other fixes that you have found worked for your Macbook’s battery, post it in the comments below, and I will update this post with the fix that worked for you so everyone can benefit from your brilliance.