Your MacBook's battery is likely the first component to replace in your computer. While Apple makes reliable machines, current battery technology means that most cells will only last a few years before their capacity deteriorates seriously.
Changing the battery is a great way to breathe new life into an older MacBook. Here are your options for a MacBook battery swap, how much it will cost to replace your MacBook's battery, and how to know when it's time to do it.
Do you need to replace your MacBook battery?
The first thing you should do is check the battery status of your MacBook to see if it's time for a replacement. To do this, click the on macOS Big Sur and later Apple menu in the top left of your computer and select System settings, then choose battery from the resulting menu.
Click in the left sidebar battery, then click Battery condition Button down.
The resulting window shows either normal or Service recommended for the Battery condition Field. If you see the former, everything is working properly with your battery. Service recommended doesn't necessarily mean something is wrong, but you are likely to see that your battery is less charged than it used to be.
You see that too Maximum capacity Of your battery. 100% means it works as well as it did when it was brand new. A smaller percentage like 80%, indicates how much of the original charge your battery can hold. For example, on a full charge, you might only get eight hours instead of 10.
For older versions of macOS, you'll need to use the possibility Button and click the battery percentage icon in the menu bar at the top right of the screen to view the battery status. This indicates one of four possible statuses for the health of your Mac battery:
- Normal: Your battery does not need to be replaced.
- Replace soon: The battery holds less charge than when it was new.
- Replace now: Your battery holds significantly less charge than its original capacity.
- Service battery: The system has detected a problem with your battery.
This should give you an indication of whether a MacBook battery change is needed.
How to check your MacBook's battery cycles
For more information, you can also view the exact number of charge and discharge cycles your Mac's battery has gone through. In order to do this:
Click on that Apple Logo in the top left corner of the screen.
Choose About this Mac, then System report.
click power in the left sidebar (under hardware) then scroll down to Health information Heading and locate Number of passes.
This number shows the number of times your battery goes from 100 percent to fully discharged. However, it only represents full cycles. For example, if your battery dropped to 50 percent, then you charge it back to 100 percent and let it drain back to 50 percent, it would count as one cycle.
The number of cycles should give you a good idea of how long your battery will be before it needs to be replaced. Different MacBooks have different cycle count ratings, so you'll need to compare your score against the ratings on Apple's Battery Cycle Support page. Almost every modern MacBook is designed for 1,000 battery cycles.
Even if these numbers look healthy, you may have noticed that your battery life has deteriorated significantly lately and decide it is time to replace it anyway. Use your own judgment to weigh up whether it is worth the cost for you. Make sure you followed the tips to improve your MacBook's battery life first.
Option 1: replace your MacBook battery under the Apple warranty
Advantage: The service is free under applicable guarantees, so it should be your first choice.
If your MacBook is still under warranty, Apple will replace a defective or excessively worn battery free of charge. In the US, Apple offers a one-year limited warranty. For those in the EU, consumer law extends this coverage to two years. If you bought AppleCare for your MacBook, this coverage extends for three years.
Those who are still insured should contact Apple immediately if they have battery problems. You can check your warranty status on Apple's Check Coverage page using your device's serial number. Find your serial number by clicking Apple Menu in the top left of the screen and select About this Mac.
If you don't have warranty coverage for a battery change, let's take a look at the next best MacBook battery swap options. However, you should know some specific cases first.
Apple battery replacement programs for certain MacBook Pro models
Even if your MacBook is outside of the normal warranty period, you may be eligible for a special MacBook Pro battery replacement from Apple.
Some units of the 13-inch MacBook Pro (without Touch Bar) manufactured between October 2016 and October 2017 are eligible for a free battery change from Apple. This is because another component fails, causing the battery to swell. According to Apple, this is not dangerous.
Visit the Apple MacBook Pro battery replacement page to enter your computer's serial number and see if you are eligible for a repair.
In addition, Apple has recalled some of its 15-inch MacBook Pro computers that were sold between September 2015 and February 2017. The company says the batteries in these devices can overheat and catch fire.
Go to the Apple 15-inch MacBook Pro Battery Recall page to enter your computer's serial number and see if you need a replacement. Remember, you can always check for product recalls for your Apple products.
Option 2: Pay for an Apple MacBook battery replacement
Advantage: Your MacBook is guaranteed against defects resulting from the procedure. Additionally, your replacement will be a true first-party product, and the job shouldn't take more than a day or so.
Apple recommends that you use authorized first-party or third-party service centers to replace the battery on your MacBook. This is generally the most expensive option, but it is also the safest. The process is less likely to go wrong, and Apple offers a 90-day guarantee on all work done.
Assuming the service is not covered by warranty or consumer law, how much does it cost to replace the MacBook battery? A typical MacBook battery replacement is $ 129 for a MacBook Air or $ 199 for a Retina MacBook Pro.
If your MacBook is particularly old, you might be better off spending that money on a replacement instead. Look out for common signs that it is time to replace your Mac and don't put money into an old machine.
To have your MacBook battery replaced at Apple, go to the Apple Mac Service and Repair website and click Start a service request. If there are no Apple Stores nearby, the website will suggest authorized third parties that can do the work instead. These technicians have the same training as Apple's and offer the same warranties.
Option 3: Have a computer repair facility replace your MacBook battery
Services: You will likely save some money by not having an Apple-certified technician perform the repairs. Third parties can also use cheaper parts to cut costs, which means they're more likely to break early.
If you're looking to save some cash, you can always pay a third-party computer repair company to replace your MacBook Air or MacBook Pro battery for you. Many repair shops will source and replace your battery, although the exact cost of replacing your MacBook's battery this way will vary depending on who you contact.
Photo credit: David O & # 39; Brien / Flickr
If you go down this route, you forego Apple's warranties and you may find that the company uses third-party parts to save money. These parts aren't necessarily inferior, but they are a risk you take. Find quotes for computer repair shops near you, then compare them to quotes from Apple.
Depending on your MacBook model, your local repair facility may refuse service if the battery is stuck. This is the case for MacBook Pro models from mid-2009 and later, and for all MacBook models with Retina displays. Official Apple repair may be your only worthwhile option if you own one of these computers.
Option 4: replace your MacBook battery yourself
Services: By taking matters into your own hands, you will save a lot of money – at the expense of your own time and the risk of things going wrong.
By far the cheapest option is to order your own MacBook replacement battery and replace it yourself. This means that you only pay the cost of the parts. In addition to having a new battery, you'll need a variety of tools to open your Mac, an anti-static wrist strap, and some method of safely disposing of your old battery.
Most of the time, you can buy kits that contain everything you need to replace a Mac's battery. These cost about half the price Apple charges you for the service. One such retailer is iFixit, which also offers guides for everything from simple fixes to complex teardowns.
Buying the battery alone should cost even less as affordable third-party options are available at a fraction of the price. We recommend only buying from a company that you trust. Pick one that has a reputation for supplying high quality parts as you won't want to spend the time replacing your battery only to make it fail.
If you're not sure what you're doing, the risk of something going wrong is much higher. However, if you enjoy taking the risk and carefully following the instructions, you will learn a lot about the insides of your computer. You might even enjoy the process!
Unfortunately, most newer MacBook models have glued-in batteries, making them incredibly difficult to repair yourself. iFixit has a MacBook Pro with a Retina display battery kit but warns that it is for advanced users and requires some serious work. Try this at your own risk.
Don't forget to recycle batteries responsibly
If you choose to do a self-made MacBook battery replacement, make sure that you recycle the used battery responsibly.
Lithium batteries must be properly recycled to prevent harm to yourself, others and the environment. Check with your local waste disposal authorities about the best way to recycle your old laptop battery – don't just throw it in the trash or regular recycling.
Most local governments have drop off points or collection systems that emphasize safety and sustainability. If you choose to have Apple serviced your laptop, Apple will take care of the battery and recycle it for you (but unfortunately doesn't offer a return service).
Is it worth replacing your MacBook battery?
Now that you know how to replace a MacBook battery, you might be wondering if you should really replace it. If your Mac is performing well off battery, paying $ 200 for a replacement to last several years longer is much cheaper than buying a new device.
However, if your MacBook is old, it probably isn't worth replacing the internal battery. In this case, you can consider external power supply solutions. Batteries are available that can power a MacBook, and you can use them for other devices in the future even after you've replaced your current Mac.
Whenever you get a battery change or a new MacBook, make sure you know how to monitor your Mac battery to keep it healthy for as long as possible.
6 apps to monitor and improve your MacBook's battery life
Do you want to get more out of your MacBook's battery? You can use these apps to keep an eye on battery health and improve battery life.
About the author
(1712 articles published)
Ben is the Assistant Editor and Onboarding Manager at MakeUseOf. He quit his IT job to write full-time in 2016 and has never looked back. For over seven years he has been a professional writer covering technical tutorials, video game recommendations, and more.
By Ben Stegner
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