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Battery usage patterns  RSS feed

 
Bartender
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Recently I noticed, my battery does not last more then 2-3 hours when not plugged in. When I got the Mac it was around 5 hours. Of course this is development usage, typically with Eclipse+Jetty+Browser+Airport+Adium+iTunes running.

I usually never shut down my Mac. Just close the lid. Also, it is plugged in round the clock except for maybe 5 hours daily. I googled around and got conflicting opinions on exactly how the charging patterns should be.
Any tips?
Also, it is Summer in India right now with temps going up to almost 35-38 C. Would it affect the charge?
 
Marshal
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Apple recommend 'calibrating' the battery once a month or so by letting it run down completely before recharging. Other than that, I'm not sure how usage patterns or temperature affect battery life.

<aside>
It always amazes me how bad battery technology is in general. If battery tech had kept up with CPU tech, for example, we'd likely have dime-sized batteries that last a lifetime.
</aside>
 
Maneesh Godbole
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Thanks Bear. Will try recalibration.
I came across http://www.apple.com/batteries/notebooks.html which made me wonder about the temperature.
 
Ranch Hand
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don't plug it 24/7,

fully charge it then drain(5%), repeat this cycle always, this will exercise all cells of the battery and prolong its life.
 
Greenhorn
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I've found that the only way to keep my apple products from gaining a lousy battery that can die in only a few hours is to shut it down every few nights and let it restart and not plug it in when the battery is rediculously high (60% or more). My computer usually never gets that low due to frequent/constant usage during the day but it usually takes me 7-8 hours of usage for it to die. I would recommend bringing the brightness of the device all the way up or playing music off it or doing any other battery draining activity for the 30-60 minutes before you know it's going to charge just so that it starts it's charge as low as possible.
 
It is sorta covered in the JavaRanch Style Guide.
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