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How do you Solve Service Battery Warning

I am getting the "service battery" warning in the battery drop down menu on my MacBook P. It comes on with all three batteries that I use. The battery seems to have a much shorter life now. They were purchased at different times and one just a year ago so I am kind of surprised they would all die at the same time. Do I just need to replace them or is this a sign for a power management problem?

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I had the Service battery alert last year on my MBP early 2011, and after a few months the battery died. It even inflated after I noticed it reached 0% of the design capacity (informed by coconut battery).

I took the battery off the MBP and bought another here in iFixit like 6 months ago.

This week this new battery reached 2.5% of the design capacity.

Today I took the MBP to the local apple authorized support.

I'm very pessimistic, and I think they'll charge me even though I think this is a design problem.

Any ideas?

Matt's Static Discharge solution below was the only one that worked for me. Kudos to him!


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Download Coconut battery and check it:

This issue has a discussion thread in the Apple Forum but so far is unanswered. You might subscibe to the issue.


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If it happens to be covered under Apple Care get it in and/or extend the warranty. Since this is a known issue, they might even fix it if it's out of warranty.

Good research + Ralph

The simultaneous "service need" of three batteries bought at different times makes me think of "the light bulb conspiracy". An interesting documentary about industries making sure products doesn't last too long.

One example was built in malfunction alert after a certain number of copies for an Epson printer (the exact model that I have. LOL). Someone had found out how to reset the counter which removed the "problem".

Thanks to Mayer for the link. It seems my battery is fare from exhausted even though I get the "Service Battery" too.


There is only two ways to fix this:

SMC - Static discharge

1. Take out the battery and disconnect MagSafe cord

2. Hold the power button for 30 seconds (static discharge)

3. Plug-in power adapter & MagSafe cord, wait until the cord LED is green

4. Put the battery back in

If that doesn't work ...

'Recalibrate the battery (takes a long time)

1. Charge your battery up to 100% until the MagSafe cord LED is green

2. Disconnect the MagSafe cord and run the system all the way out of batteries

3. Put the computer to sleep (5 hours) to finish discharging the batteries charge

4. Charge it back up all the way

Anything else is pointless, it's the SMC services within your system, it's not a software problem.


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thank you ...

the "1- Static discharge with specific directions"

its work well on my Macbook Unibody 2.4 Ghz

This is just a more aggressive method in resetting the SMC. It is not technically removing static, just removing all power & charged logic capacitors power (creating a null state) so the SMC goes into a reset condition.

The static discharge worked on my 13" MacBookPro (with a 3.5 year old battery). I had originally removed the battery to fix my track pad. Then I noticed a month or so later the service battery warning. (I wasn't using the mac a lot, so not sure if the warning happened right after and I just didn't notice.) I went back in, disconnected the battery (did not remove), held power button down for 30 seconds, reconnected power cord, and then reconnected battery.

I though it was kind of stupid to be reconnecting the battery while power cord was connected since these batteries are not designed to be replaced by end users and have a wired connection. But it did the trick (where as resetting the SMC did not).

Hi! for the static discharge, do you plug in the power cord while holding the power button after 30 seconds or you release the button and then plug in the power cord??

SMC reset not static discharge. And you want to remove the power cord from the system when you do it, then you plug it in as you hold it.



I followed Matt's reset instructions and it worked. Thanks

BTW, I found the same info on the Apple Support Communities site, with more detailed info on

Resetting the SMC (system management controller).

One difference I noted: Matt said hold down power button for 30 seconds. Apple said 5 sec.

For the record, I did 30 seconds.

It did more than remove that battery service light.

My fan used to also run excessively, and now that is fixed too!

Worth checking out:


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It's Worked for me!!! ... THANKS A LOT !!!


Try resetting the SMC.


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Resetting the SMC (according to the instructions above by removing the battery) did in fact work for a while, but then the service battery error came back.

A friend and I have the same problem and I noticed that we also had something else in common--our AC adaptors had fraying at the strain point where the adaptor cord meets the connector. Perhaps the fraying was causing a discharge issue?

Sure enough, once I got a new AC adaptor, the service battery message went away all on its own, and hasn't come back.


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Good point on having a healthy charger! Yes, it does make a difference. You could also damage your system if the data signal line gets shorted it will blow the charging control logic which is an expensive repair! Always make sure the cords are not damaged and when your wrap them up just loosely making a simple 6" circle with a Velcro tie-wrap, don't use the built in wrap pins on the charger! We glue them down so our employees don't use them.


probaly a current sence / current flow problem in your mac. Not consistent values of current can damage your hardware. Like its happening more ofthen, ist for sure this problem.

1 )Check the current sence resistors from the battery next to the u7000 (current sense chip)

2) measure the voltage comming in the battery and comming out..


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Try taking it to an AASP (Apple Authorized Service Provider) and have them run a battery test on it to see if it is failed prematurely or if it's just exhausted.


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all problems with warning battery service appeared after an upgrade. everything get stacked and i used Onyx to be cool again. I have a macbook pro(8,2) early 2011 with 10.8.5 and battery health was 88% (430 battery loads - 30 months macbook). After the upgrade (2 weeks now or a month i cant remember) i have 60% of battery health and 436 battery loads. I tested recalibration for the battery (without leaving my pc sleeping for 5 hours) and of course i opened from behind to get out the battery and making the trick with the 30sec... but nothing happened except than when i reconnect power cord fans started....Dan any advise about this?i need a step by step guide doing the work rightly..and then i will go to an AASP...or not? haha




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Thanks mumu0007, your procedure worked for me. I re-calibrated the battery using your steps as indicated. thanks.


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You get that notification majorly due to prolonged storage of the mac.

Best thing to do is to charge in off position for 5hours. power on and use up the battery totally. Repeat this cycle two to three times, the notification will clear. You might notice your battery sometimes remains on 97% even when fully charged, thats just by the way, it will still last more than 3 hours.

But in a situation your battery barely crosses the 2hr mark, it might need replacement.



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