MacBook Battery Replacement Tips & Tricks
MacBook Battery Replacement Tips & Tricks
While the battery in a standard MacBook the battery does sometimes wear down, refuse to hold a charge, and have to be replaced. Replacing a MacBook battery is mostly easy, but depending on the model, might require a bit of different expertise. While most MacBook batteries can be replaced at home, Apple charges around $129 to do so. If you choose to go that route, it is significantly more expensive than doing it yourself, but if you live near an Apple store, they will likely be able to complete the replacement same day.
Does Your MacBook Battery Have to Be Replaced?
The first thing that you should check is the battery. If the battery is not charging or not holding a charge, the issue might not be with the battery. The best way to find out if the battery is old is to go into the Mac’s settings to check the life cycle count. To do this follow these instructions.
- Click the Apple Logo on the top Menu Bar on your Computer.
- Click ‘About This Mac’ on the Top of that Menu
- Click ‘System Report’
- Click ‘More Info’ (or ‘System Report’ on older Macs)
- Click ‘Power’
From there, you should be able to see the number of charge cycles your battery has been charged for. This will be listed as ‘Cycle Count’ and the lower the number, the less likely you need a battery replacement. As a rough guide, the following MacBook’s have these Cycle capacities.
- 2006-Mid 2009 – 300 Cycles
- Late 2008 Aluminum Unibody – 500 Cycles
- Mid 2009-Late 2010 – 1000 Cycles
- MacBook Pro – MacBook Pro Retina – 1000 Cycles
- Late 2008 15″ MacBook Pro – 500 Cycles
- MacBook Pro 15″ & 17″ – 300 Cycles
- MacBook Air Late 2008 – 300 Cycles
- MacBook Air Mid 2009 – 500 Cycles
- MacBook Air – 1000 Cycles
As a general rule, if your MacBook is a 2009 or older, you probably have 300 or 500 cycles. If you have a 2012 or sooner, you almost certainly have 500-1000 cycles, with the larger being the more likely. The easiest way to find out what your model is, is to get the serial number off of the back and add it to your Apple Support profile at support.apple.com where they will automatically tell you which model you have.
If your battery is nearing the end of its charge cycle lifespan then you need a new battery. Otherwise you may want to take a voltmeter or multimeter to test the charger, test the plugs, and check to make sure that the connections are clean. In some cases a battery may become damaged before it’s lifespan is up, but unless it has been exposed to a power surge, or water, this is unlikely. If you suspect that the battery may have been damaged, follow the steps below to take your battery out and test it with a multimeter. Otherwise try testing and checking the power plug, charger, and socket.
Taking Out the Battery
If your MacBook is on, turn it off, unplug it, and wait five to ten minutes for the system to cool down. Depending on the MacBook Model you have, there are a number of different ways to take the battery out.
Slots and Latches – There are dozens of models of MacBooks and MacBook Pros with an easy to use entry slot on the back. In this case, simply flip it over, check for a lever or large screw like indentation and use that. For the lever, move the lever into the opposite position and pull up. For the Screw, use a guitar pick, quarter, butter knife tip, or large flat screwdriver to turn the screw.
UniBody MacBooks – There are also a number of UniBody Macs that make it a bit more difficult for the user to replace the battery. For these Macs, you will need the following tools:
- Phillips #00 Screwdriver
- Tri-Wing Screwdriver
Typically the case is held on with Phillips #00 screws. Once you flip the MacBook over and take these out, you can use the spudger to gently lift the back of the case. From there, you should be able to see the battery. Apple uses both Phillips #00 and Tri-Wing screws on the battery. Make sure that you have found all of the screws connected to the battery and then use the spudger to lift it out.
From there, you can buy the same battery model to replace it with.
Purchasing a Macbook Battery Replacement
Finally, you have to make sure that you purchase the right replacement battery for your Mac. While there are a number of options available including aftermarket and unbranded, the safest choice is of course, an Apple battery. Apple batteries are not cheap, but you can find them on eBay, Amazon, and most Mac stores for considerably less than the cost of replacement. Make sure that you have the same model number (this is important for exact fit, sizing, and voltage.
You can purchase a new battery based on the model number and year of your MacBook, or based on the serial number on the battery.
Want more specific instructions for your exact MacBook? Send us an email at [email protected] for help!