7/8/11
12:30 pm

MacMost Now 576: Don’t Stress About Batteries

In this special episode, learn to now stress about your MacBook or iOS device battery. It may not be worth it to expend a lot of time and stress to extend your battery's life by only a little bit.

Video Transcript (Click to Expand)
Hi this is Gary from MacMost Now. On today's episode, lets talk about stressing over your Mac or IOS battery. So I'm in beautiful Maui where there's not much stress, having a great vacation, and it makes me think about all the questions I get from people stressing about things, like their batteries. So I get this question a lot. I get people asking me the best way, the very best way to take care of their battery that's in their Iphone or their Ipad or their Macbook. Well my advice is don't stress about it. I see a lot of people stressing too much about this. I don't worry about it. I use my Macbook on a battery while I'm away from my desk, and when I'm at my desk I plug it in. Now people are going to say, wait you're supposed to recondition it. Once a month or so you have to drain the battery, and apple still does recommend that. I drain it every once in a while but I don't schedule it. If I notice the battery's depleted after letting it run for a long time, then I'll let it run completely out and charge it overnight. But I just let it happen. I don't schedule it or stress about it. As for my Iphone I simply use it all day and plug it in while I'm sleeping. And my Ipad, I don't even do that, I just continue to use it until I notice the battery's running low and then I'll plug it in that night and let it charge up. Now as for doing things like reconditioning it or doing things at just the right conditions, you know, it may add 1 or 2 percent to the lifetime of the battery, but so what? If you're going to replace the battery, what's the difference if you replace it a week or a few weeks earlier? A Macbook battery you might have to replace every two to three years if you want to get the most out of your Macbook. And an IOS battery, if you're not going to upgrade your Iphone every year like I do, then you may need to go in for a replacement, but it's just like a car. You need maintenance. You have to change the oil, and you're going to have to get new tires every once in a while. It's not a good thing to expect that you buy your Macbook or IOS device and expect that you're never going to spend a penny on it. You're going to have to upgrade software, you're going to have to maintain things on it. Now there are a lot of myths out there. One of those is you shouldn't use your Macbook while it's plugged in, and I don't really get this. There are a lot of myths out there. One is when you're Macbook's fully charged, you shouldn't use it while it's plugged in. You should absolutely use it when it's plugged in. For instance if you're working on it for a while at your desk, leave it plugged in. The battery won't overcharge and this way you're not running down the battery cycle while you're using it, sitting at your desk. Whenever I'm at my desk, my Macbook is plugged in getting power from the wall. And I use the battery when I'm away when I'm sitting on the sofa, or out of the house. So the important thing to remember, is these devices are all meant to take stress away from us and make things easier for us, and when you start stressing about them, about how you use the battery, well that's working against that. Don't stress about it. Just use it as you want to use it. Let the battery worry about itself. There's a lot of software and bits of hardware in your devices that can handle the battery. Let them do their thing. So I encourage you all to live a more stress free life and do not worry so much about the batteries in your Apple devices. From Maui, this is Gary from MacMost Now.

Comments: 18 Responses to “MacMost Now 576: Don’t Stress About Batteries”

    Phyllis S.
    7/8/11 @ 2:00 pm

    Wow! This was perfect. I do constantly stress about draining my iPhone and iPad batteries. This took care of it. No more battery stress. Now, if you could just take care of some other stressors! Also, thanks for the great vacation video.
    I follow you on Twitter and Facebook and get your emails. I love your advice!
    Phyllis

    Antrim
    7/9/11 @ 6:07 am

    Great episode. Love the silent interludes.

    Jerry
    7/9/11 @ 5:36 pm

    Gary, thanks for backing me on this. My wife, who had been counseled by our otherwise brilliant son, had been always running on batteries till she couldn’t anymore and then unplugging as soon as she saw it was charged. She happened to be right next to me when I played your video. She seems more relaxed now that it’s not just me vs. our OCD son. ;-)

    Rod
    7/10/11 @ 7:24 am

    Sorry, Batteries? What?………. I was enjoying the scenery behind you! Have a good vacation! :-)

    Phil
    7/10/11 @ 7:47 am

    Gary, now if you could only cure our other life-stresses as simply as this…

    Russ
    7/11/11 @ 5:33 pm

    You have to bring your wife and kid(s) in the video :-)

    Erica
    7/15/11 @ 7:16 am

    HI Gary – Thanks for the advice and for sharing beautiful Maui. Love it. At last, I can return the favor and give you some advice: While you’re there, go eat at Mama’s Fish House and enjoy the local artists’ cooperative gallery nearby.

    Ed
    7/15/11 @ 4:04 pm

    Gary,

    I think this video and the other ones in Hawaii were just filler videos to meet the status quo. Battery use causing stress, really??? If people get real stress from this, they really need to relook life’s priorities. I can’t wait till you get back in the studio and do the good hands on videos again. Hope you had a good vacation though and may God bless you and your family.

      7/15/11 @ 9:18 pm

      “meet the status quo”? Do you mean meet a quota?
      Not sure why you would say that.
      All three of these video ideas came from user questions. I keep track, you see. I’ve been asked about these three topics over and over again. And each time I can see the stress in the questions. So I came up with the idea to do a series on these.
      The idea is that when I am asked the same thing over and over, create a video so instead of answering the question again, I can just point to the video.
      I have a huge list of ideas for videos. Most are tutorials. But when I come up with some that are more “explanations” than tutorials, I save those for opportunities like times when I will have a good outdoor backdrop.
      I’m sorry that you didn’t like these videos. But I know I can’t please everyone.

        Ed
        7/15/11 @ 11:40 pm

        I just prefer the more professional video presentation in the studio Gary. You do that better then anyone else I have seen yet. So when I get the conversational ones I feel a little cheated (kind of like you half-assed it just to get a video up/just my personal opinion). Dude, enjoy your vacation, then address the issue in the studio. That is just my opinion and as always thanks for listening to the bitching. You are a champ. You always address issues in a very respectful way.

        Ed

          7/16/11 @ 8:09 am

          Half-assed? I’m sorry you feel that way. By the comments I’ve been getting I can see that these three videos have already been of value to many people. I knew they would be because I have been asked about them so many times. If you only like my tutorial videos, then just watch those. No need to watch every one.

        Delmar Knudson
        7/19/11 @ 12:53 pm

        Most of enjoy this too (maybe your tightly woven dissertations from your studio just a tad more). Anyway, don’t stress about it :-) Del from MacinTech.org

        Selina
        6/21/12 @ 10:52 am

        Gary, your videos are so informative and exceptional!
        All of them!
        Can’t believe someone would leave a comment such as that about “filler videos”. I was uncertain about battery usugae for my iPad and this cleared that concern for me totally.
        Thank you for all of your efforts.
        Greatly Appreciated.
        Love the view from Maui! are you video taping using an iPhone? Great clarity! Stopping now…….lol!

    Mehdi
    7/22/11 @ 1:49 am

    The Videos are perfect, people stop complaining, these videos, specially the batteries were always a question for me…
    tanx a lot Gary for the videos
    Have Fun

    Richard24
    10/23/11 @ 12:17 pm

    Well said again. Thanks Gary…you need to work for Apple…..we need you their..

    Me
    4/7/12 @ 6:52 pm

    Well. If you have money to buy a MacBook Pro battery a year then DON’T STRESS ABOUT IT. That’s around $150/year. If you want your battery to last more than a year, You’d better not plug it in all the time and you’d better “condition” it AT LEAST once a month. When I first bought my MacBook Pro, I carefully did all that and I didn’t have to buy a new battery for almost 3 years. Then I thought I overdid it and also I probably grew tired of watching my battery all the time. So I left my new battery plugged in all the time and calibrate it once in a very long while. The result? The new battery WENT KAPUT in just a lil over a year. I just bought another battery and now I’m back to carefully not letting plugged in all the time and letting it run down completely every chance I got. So, If you have money to throw away on 2, 3 MacBook Pro batteries every year, don’t stress about it. But if you don’t have money to do so, YOU’D BETTER BE!

      4/7/12 @ 10:26 pm

      I just want to point out that keeping your MacBook plugged in does not wear on the battery. Your MacBook is smart enough to know that it shouldn’t damage the battery just by being plugged in. I believe that your second battery didn’t last as long (results always vary) but I’m sure it had nothing to do with keeping it plugged in. In fact, only plugging it in to charge it, and then running it off the battery (extra cycles) when you don’t need to, should lead toward shorter battery life, not longer.

Comments Closed.