Early 2011 model, A1278 / 2.3 GHz i5 or 2.7 GHz i7 processor.

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Slow charging and sudden battery life loss

After putting off the upgrade for about a year and a half, I finally swapped out the battery in my early 2011 MBP with new stock from iFixit. The initial result was good: 6,058mAh through the first 3 cycles, per Coconut Battery. I did notice that it was taking longer to charge the computer, but I attributed that to the new battery's size - I was working with 3,528mAh (61% of original capacity) on 1,616 cycles before this new battery.

Couple days later, and I noticed two things. One, my battery capacity has already dropped off to 5,252mAh (91% of factory capacity) after 5 cycles. Two, my computer had charged maybe 20% over the course of 4 hours while on power adapter. Coconut Battery reported it was charging with about 3.66 watts. I have noticed this issue from time to time.

Do you guys think it's the new battery? The power adapter and cord? Or perhaps the MagSafe power port? My power adapter and cord is not as aged; I had to buy a replacement about 4 years ago. The MagSafe port is showing its age somewhat; it definitely doesn't look very clean. When I reset the connection, sometimes it'll jump to a higher wattage for charging (like around 12 watts). One last time I noticed recently was that the LED would slowly dim out once in a while - weird!

Answers greatly appreciated!!

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Wound up taking my computer to the Apple Store since they had an opening. They will spend quite a bit of time giving you their disclaimer that they won't do any repairs for you since you've installed 3rd party parts into the system - ignore this. The battery replacement is a ridiculously easy job, and you don't want to be paying them to undo a couple screws anyway.

Anyhow, they ran a test that confirmed the problem was with the battery. It took maybe five minutes, and the same test also verified that everything else was in good working order (logic board, MagSafe port, charging adapter, etc). I also wound up getting my replacement battery on warranty from iFixit later that day, and the early returns on this new battery are encouraging so far.

Lastly, I want to add that I learned it's supposed to take about 4 hours for your MBP to fully charge from empty. The first 0% to 80% is done via "fast charging", and is supposed to take about 2 hours. The last 80% to 100% is done via "trickle charging", and is supposed to take another 2 hours. The whole point of this trickle charging is to avoid damaging the battery with overcharge once it's near capacity, and is a logical explanation why you'll have much lower wattage when charging during those conditions. I've verified this with constant observation using CoconutBattery, and my MBP now takes 4 hours or less to charge.

Hopefully this info helps everybody who came to this thread with a similar issue. Don't assume it's the logic board right away - that's a PRICEY part, and a hard fix, if I'm not mistaken. The Apple Store won't charge you anything to diagnose the problem, so take advantage of that if you can.

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Review this Apple T/N Apple Portables: Troubleshooting MagSafe adapters see if your MagSafe adapter is the correct one and the connector interface is clean and in good working order.

Update (03/05/2018)

Sadly, it sounds like you have a charging logic issue within the system. Lets see if we can isolate the fault. Follow this IFIXIT guide MacBook Pro 13" Unibody Early 2011 Logic Board Replacement for the first four steps, once you disconnect the battery jump down to Step14 disconnecting the battery charge indicator ribbon cable place a piece of tape across the connect so the ribbon stays disconnected. See if that changed anything.

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I know the adapter is the correct one, because I purchased it from Apple. The interface also looks fine based on the pictures.

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So you didn't double check to be doubly sure ;-} Even the Apple sales folks make mistakes. Which is why you really should check.

In case you missed the link in the first Apple T/N heres the follow through: Find the right power adapter and cable for your Mac notebook

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Actually, I did double check. I wound up getting an appointment to the Genius Bar at one of the Apple Stores in my area, and they confirmed it was the battery. The test they ran also showed that everything else was working fine.

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Dear, I'm experiencing the exact same problems on my MBP early 2011 with iFixit battery replaced some day ago, mainly:

1) very Lowe charging time (I reach the 100% full charge after 4/5 hours of continuous charge

2) the battery drain more or less uniformly but at a certain moment suddenly pass from 30% to 7% in a second

3) after few cycles of charge (<10 times) the battery capacity is already at 94%

4) iFixit change my battery because I encountered these problems, with this second battery replaced I'm encountering the same problems.

5) obviously I tried NVRAM and SMC resets but nothing changed.

In my opinion iFixit macbook batteries are not good at all.

Please let me know if you found a solution.

thanks!

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I wound up ordering one from a different store. So far im at 20 cycles, and its still holding strong at about 50 mAh above factory capacity. If you go with them, make sure you follow their battery calibrarion instructions; its not hard.

https://eshop.macsales.com/item/NewerTec...

I should update this post; the replacement battery iFixit sent to me also wound up having the same issues just a few cycles in. Bad batch of batteries in my opinion, and I got a full refund. Among other things, I noticed it was from the same batch (Coconut Battery will tell you the manufacturer name and date it was made).

Good luck.

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I also had exactly the same issue. Charge dropped from 50%>6% and capacity lost at the same time. Down to 91% within a couple of cycles.

I reported it and they instantly sent out a replacement so the customer service was excellent if not the battery.

The new battery is better in that it has not lost capacity yet but I have has some strange unexpected power-down/power-off events. As I am only a couple of cycles in I am still monitoring the battery to see if it settles down.

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When was your battery manufactured? Was it around the 12-03-2018?

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I am so angry with ifixit batteries. I spent the time to take apart my computer three times because I got 3 WARRANTY BATTERIES. Every single battery was sh*t! All of them jump around in percentage and take forever to charge! My last one was so bad that it would jump from 80 percent down to 6! I cannot say that I will not buy ifixit parts again but I will surely not be buying their batteries as I have seen a lot of people have issues with theirs. I had the exact same issues with all THREE of my batteries that I tried out and when I asked for a replacement battery from a different manufacturer they automatically sent me a refund form and nothing else.

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i dont think its ifixt problem, I bought 3 separate batteries from 3 different providers, the last one is original apple battery and the problem is the same - this is because Apple doesnt want people to fix their old laptops but buy a new one! it is called greed. now, you cant even replace the battery as everything is glued to the board, its only to stop people from upgrading their equipment. read more on "planned obsolescence apple" - the OS is managing the replacement battery this way and its been programmed within their systems.

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Yup, it's true. I've had the same problem with my 2011 MacBook Pro. Swapped the original battery for two aftermarket ones, all with the same problems.

Apple will not allow their computers to recognise any aftermarket batteries save for the OEM ones, and after seven years attempts to make obsolete any of its products.

I think this will be the last Mac that I own and I will not buy a newer model, which has everything – including the battery, RAM, and hard disk – soldered to the motherboard. If I wanted that kind of product, I'd just look for a tablet, but can't justify spending £1599 on a costly, intransigent cheat courtesy of Tim Cook.

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Exactly the same problem here, but my Mac has been unlucky even before since I already got my logic board replaced in 2015 for graphic flicker.

Last spring I started to have first issue with my original battery and I bought 1 spare battery (suppose to be an original), from a local store in Germany, after a few cycles of battery charging it would fall below 90% . I had this battery replaced 3 times and last is 21% now of design capacity, after 5 cycles !!!

I had another brand battery online and this is also dropping very fast, from now on 91% after 4 cycles and 4 days in my macbook (early 2011). In my opinion this is clearly a logic board problem ... again!

I went to the Apple store and they did a test, the results shows that I have a battery problem, but the rest is fine. Of course there is something else, but they don’t care when you have an old style macbook from 2011.

In any case, as I was told, it is not possible to solve the problem since any part of this mac is no longer manufactured.

Do I have to follow the step shown on the iFixit guide on "replacing the logic board" and put the tape on the battery sensor?

Do you somehow solve this problem? Any brand-name batteries suggestion?

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I have actually the 15 inch early 2011.

Should I disconnect the connector on this pic?

Block Image

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did you fix your problem?

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Eureka!

Thank you! You save my old but working fine mac and I save the money to buy a new one.

thanks thanks thanks thanks!!!!

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Same problem here. You disconnected the connector in the pic and....? What? How did you solve the problem?

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