Freezing Batteries 101

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doug-doug the mighty's picture
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Freezing Batteries 101

I remember reading how to do this at one point, but I cannot find where it was, just vague references to the process in general.

Here is the deal: My clamshell iBook got a new battery just aboput five months ago. The battery usually gave about four good hours of life while surfing the web at a WiFi spot. Something happened in the last week to confuse the battery and it now does not like to charge. I only ever plug it in to charge, but it has been plugged in for up to two days and my yellow charge light goes green (every once in a while turning yellow for a few seconds and then back to green). My battery does not appear to be getting charged at all. I have tried to charge with the iBook both on and off. I have tried to reset the PMU.

Is freezing right for me?

Should I put the frozen battery back in the laptop or let it come to room temperature first?

What is the exact process for freezing?

Can someone please shed any light on this problem. My last battery died due to old age and my recelling efforts were a waste as I never got it to work. This is my primary Mac.

Help.

TIA

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i would try freezing it, but

i would try freezing it, but my method i used i wouldnt recomend. i took mine apart and manually discharged it. then i got an extra 2 hours of run time.

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Have you tried fully discharg

Have you tried fully discharging the battery and then recharging?

Have you tried Battery Reset 2.0? (originally from Apple's website, but available other places through a Google search)

Have you tried Battery Amnesia? (I don't remember where to find it, but do a Google search)

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read this article http://www.

read this article http://www.macintouch.com/http://www.macintouch.com/laptopbatt.html

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Re: i would try freezing it, but

i would try freezing it, but my method i used i wouldnt recomend. i took mine apart and manually discharged it. then i got an extra 2 hours of run time.

I also manually discharged mine, but by connecting a load to the external pins rather than dismantling. I'm pretty sure that the important part is to cut power to the battery's internal circuitry. Freezing or draining does this by dropping the voltage of the cells inside the unit below that required by the circuitry, but you should also be able to to it by disassembling it and briefly disconnecting the cells. The clamshell's battery doesn't have indictor lights, but on models that do, you'll know you have successfully reset the battery's circuitry because the lights will do a little dance when you plug it back in.

The freezing trick never worked for me (maybe my freezer's not cold enough), but if you are going to try it, you should definitely seal the battery in a plastic bag to protect it from condensation and wait for it to warm up before trying to use it.

doug-doug the mighty's picture
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Re: Have you tried fully discharg

Have you tried fully discharging the battery and then recharging?

Have you tried Battery Reset 2.0? (originally from Apple's website, but available other places through a Google search)

Have you tried Battery Amnesia? (I don't remember where to find it, but do a Google search)

I will download these later tonight. I need to make sure I have enough charge since I have no way to get stuff from work PC (where I am now) to laptop and my laptop is the only personal internet connection I have, so it must download independently (if I have enough charge to do that). If this fails, I will have to actually go inside of a local WiFi spot and plug into AC if it can be found.

Thanks for the tip.

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Re: i would try freezing it, but

I also manually discharged mine, but by connecting a load to the external pins rather than dismantling.

So which pins and how did you do this? What was the load? Tell me more.

The freezing trick never worked for me (maybe my freezer's not cold enough), but if you are going to try it, you should definitely seal the battery in a plastic bag to protect it from condensation and wait for it to warm up before trying to use it.

So in essence, I was right in that I should thaw before reconnecting the battery?

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I suspect freezing the batter

I suspect freezing the battery may just do more harm than good...

I'd suggest having a look at the very reliable Dan's Data... some places to get you started:

http://www.dansdata.com/gz011.htm
http://www.dansdata.com/danletters079.htm
http://www.dansdata.com/danletters080.htm
http://www.dansdata.com/danletters086.htm

He's got a lot to say about batteries, that's for sure.

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Re: i would try freezing it, but

I also manually discharged mine, but by connecting a load to the external pins rather than dismantling.

So which pins and how did you do this? What was the load? Tell me more.


For my 12" iceBook's battery, it was the first and last pins. I took a meter to it and found 12 volts between those pins. I'm not sure of the pinout for the clamshells, the only battery I have for one of those is long dead. I found that the most effective load for discharging it was a 12 VDC motor that I found at the local army surplus store.

The freezing trick never worked for me (maybe my freezer's not cold enough), but if you are going to try it, you should definitely seal the battery in a plastic bag to protect it from condensation and wait for it to warm up before trying to use it.

So in essence, I was right in that I should thaw before reconnecting the battery?


Probably a good idea. It certainly won't hurt to do so, whereas it's possible that the alternative would. I'm not familiar with all of the physics specific to lithium-ion cells, but I know that both charging and drawing power work fine at room temperature.

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Re: I suspect freezing the batter

He's got a lot to say about batteries, that's for sure.

Unfortunately, he just does not give it to you in the nutshell, does he?

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Re: I suspect freezing the batter

He's got a lot to say about batteries, that's for sure.

Unfortunately, he just does not give it to you in the nutshell, does he?

Actually, there's a single "everything I can think of about batteries" article somewhere, but I couldn't find it when I went to post.

doug-doug the mighty's picture
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little luck

Tried the Reset app, nothing changed.

Tried Amnesia, it did discharge over 182 minutes from 30% (the OS indicated 30% and 9 minmutes life, BTW).

I plugged it in to charge up this morning. The light still cycles green (about a minute) to amber (~20-30 seconds) and then back to green. The OS battery indicator is not usually in synch with the light. It will immediately change the icon from battery to battery with a plug on top (but no lightening bolt - charge indicator) when I plug in, even if the light goes amber. Sometimes it does indicate this when the light is actually green. I have not been able to discern any delay or mirrored pattern to the green/amber cycle of the light (but there may be).

doug-doug the mighty's picture
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a full charge

it finally finished charging during the night, last night. Over the weekend, I will try to use and charge it as much as I can and see if it does better. It is not that the battery was not holding a charge, just that the laptop went from charging in about 2-3 hours to over a day.

I am crossing my fingers.

Jon
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If it would always finish cha

If it would always finish charging in 2-3 hours then it was probably not getting the ramp charge and the final trickle to top it off. It should do a "fast" carge up to 70% or so, then trickle charge the rest up. Then it shoud "float" the charge level between 95-100%. Sometimes it take my iBook several hours to finish the fast and then the final trickle charge. It gives me 3+ hours and it's the original battery from mid-2002.

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