The battery life of an Apple MacBook is something that PC laptop users dream about. It's normal for MacBook Air users to get 12 hours on a single charge, and MacBook Pro users should get several hours, even if the laptop is a few years old. But, the battery life will get worse over time. There is nothing that anybody can do to prevent that. The issue comes when it is time to replace the battery. They are not designed to be replaceable by members of the public, which makes some people think that they are not replaceable at all.
That's not true. The battery in a MacBook, whether it's a MacBook Pro or Air, can be replaced with a new model and many more years use can be had.
How to tell if you need a new Mac battery
The fastest way to check if your MacBook is in need of a new battery is to open System Profiler. This is located in Applications > Utilities and can also be accessed by going to the Apple menu > About This Mac > More Info. Click on the Power section in the list and you’ll find information like the cycle count and condition rating. The condition rating can be "Normal", "Replace Soon", "Replace Now", or "Service Battery". If your battery is listed as anything except, Condition: Normal, then you should replace your battery.
How to access information about your Mac battery:
Your first step will vary depending on which version of the Mac operating system that you are using:
- OS X Snow Leopard v10.6.8 or earlier: Open Apple System Profiler by choosing "About this Mac" from the Apple Menu. Then, click More Info.
- OS X Lion v10.7 or later: Open System Information by choosing "About this Mac" from the Apple Menu. Click System Report.
- macOS Sierra 10.12 or later: Open System Information by choosing "About this Mac" from the Apple Menu. Click System Report.
- Click Power in the Contents list (under the Hardware section as shown below).
Use of your MacBook battery is counted in the form of charge cycles. A charge cycle means using all of the battery's power, but that doesn't necessarily mean a single charge. For instance, you could use your MacBook for an hour or more one day, using half its charge, and then recharge it fully. If you did the same thing the next day, it would count as one charge cycle, not two, so it may take several days to complete a cycle.
Batteries have a limited amount of charge cycles before they are considered to be consumed. Once consumed, a replacement battery is recommended. You can use your battery after it reaches its maximum cycle count, but you may notice a reduction in your battery life. Knowing how many charge cycles are on your battery and how many are left can help you determine when a battery replacement is required. For optimal performance, replace your battery before you reach the maximum cycle count.
Identify Your MacBook
If you are not sure which type of MacBook you have, we have some information pages which can help. Or you can send us the serial number of your Mac using our contact form and we can let you know what type of Mac you have, and what your optons are for a battery replacement.
Locate your serial number, model identifier, and part number
You can find the serial number and other identifiers for your MacBook in macOS, on the computer's surface, and on its packaging.
In the About This Mac window
With most versions of macOS, you can find your computer's serial number and model information in the About This Mac window.
Choose Apple () menu > About This Mac. The window that appears lists your computer's model name — for example, MacBook Pro (13-inch, 2016, Four Thunderbolt 3 ports) — and serial number. Your serial number can really help SimplyFixIt to offer you personalised advice on repairs or upgrades for your model.
You can also use your computer's model identifier to get more information. In the About This Mac window, click System Report. In the System Information window that opens, find Model Identifier in the Hardware Overview section. Then use the identifier to locate your MacBook below.
On the surface of your MacBook
Close your MacBook and turn it over. The serial number is on the underside of the computer, near the regulatory markings.
On the original product packaging or receipt
If you still have the original packaging for your MacBook, you can find the serial number on a barcode label on the box.