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Battery life dropped considerably on Mountain Lion.

522022 Views 3,396 Replies Latest reply: Oct 28, 2013 5:38 AM by CT RSS Branched to a new discussion.
  • woooter Calculating status...

    A quick update on my situation on an early 2011 15" MacBook Pro.

     

    Battery health was quickly deteriorating. I had it replaced, but after that and after not using a single cycle, battery health dropped to 99%, and my uptime did not improve. I got 2 hours if lucky.

     

    I backed up all my files onto a Time Capsule, booted in recovery mode, checked and erased the disk, installed a fresh copy of Mountain Lion with 10.8.2. I selectively restored my data, reinstalled all my programs I needed at this moment and still got indications of 2 hours of possible uptime on my battery.

     

    I reinstalled the latest SMC update for my Macbook Pro (8.2). A few hours later, my battery's health was back at 100% and over factory spec on maximum charge. I worked more than two hours on battery power and had 46% left and an indication of 2h18m left on the battery, before I went to bed.

     

    Something was wrong with a process though in my Mountain Lion, because although I had set the machine up to go to sleep after half an hour on external power, the machine was always on. After reinstalling, this has disappeared.

  • weeasle Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    Hi richsadams and good peeps of this forum,

     

    I am back to give a brief report of my progress so far as promised.

     

    I upgraded my late 2010 13in macbook air around 22 sep... I did not get to start testing until today (10 days later). My MBA was shutdown and sitting at work during this time and when I booted today had 96% battery life showing.. No real issue/ nothing much different there..

     

    As mentioned I upgraded from SL 10.6.8 to 10.8.2 using the App Store. I didn't have power nap in Sys Prefs and it appears my SMC firmware was not upgraded (also confirmed by the fact that it is now offered in software update).

     

    My current ver is:

    MBA31.0061.B01

      SMC Version (system):          1.66f54

     

    So far I have been running for 3 hours and have 45% remaining on the est. meter on the top finder bar.. I believe this is slightly under what I had with SL and the rated 7hrs (max) so far but I have been downloading the ML installer again, using safari and firefox so some reasonable network usage so really I consider things roughly on par with SL battery life so far...

     

    I will use a full cycle to confirm total runtime before updating firmware and then report back with post SMC and EFI firmware update battery life performance.

     

    Briefly I do feel a certain percentage of problems may be from some macbook users not being aware of and following guidelines for battery maintenance (using proper cycling - I won't go into it here but I did post the link around p.160). Also some people may not be aware there is inbuilt battery calibration routine/procedure for macbooks that can help recover battery life estimation (also linked around page 159/160).

     

    However, I do feel there are some bugs/issues at play for a certain percentage of people. From my research so far my hunch and bet is on 3rd party kernel exentensions possibly maxing out system processes while on battery. It is worth bearing in mind that SL was a 32bit kernel and Lion and above is new 64bit kernel architecture - so while I am sure Apple is doing its best to chase down bugs, there are hundreds of possible interactions with 3rd party software...

     

    I will provide two links below - the bottom of the page on the first link has a link to a free 3rd party utlity for discovering what 3rd party kernel extensions are installed/running on a macbook system.  The second link show a fix which seems to have helped some Lion users that had the kernel_task system process consuming excessive cycles.

     

    You can view what processes may be consuming CPU cycles by running Activity Monitor, pressing Command-1 and selecting "all processes" in the drop-down near the top-right.

     

    There are good technical explanations on the pages linked below but BE WARNED - tinker with your Mac OSX AT YOUR OWN RISK - If you aren't comfortable tinkering and accepting the risk that goes along with OS kernel tinkering my advice is DONT (I am not). Lets let the good folks at Cupertino do their job and discover what may be at play for a certain percentage of macbook users... However the links are here to at least empower people to discover what may be the cause of their battery drain - If these fixes do help you - Please do report to Apple using bugreporter.apple.com

     

    https://discussions.apple.com/thread/4181616?start=0&tstart=0

    http://www.rdoxenham.com/?p=259

     

    Best,

     

    Wezley

  • jasenfrombaldwinsville Calculating status...

    I reinstalled the OS X 10.8.2 combo update after reinstalling Mountain Lion, performed an SMC and PRAM reset and the battery seems to be lasting longer now

     

    1. Reinstalled OS X 10.8.2 Combo update

    2. Prior to the Macbook Pro rebooting after the screen turns black press the power button to turn the Macbook Pro off. Then perform both the SMC and PRAM resets prior to the Macbook Pro booting back into OS X Mountain Lion

     

    It appears at this time the time remaining on the battery is more accurate and is performing better than prior to reinstalling the update again.

     

    I am on a Macbook Pro 17" mid 2009 (standard factory build)

     

    Battery specs from Mini Battery Logger:

     

    Cycle Count: 82

    Voltage: 8057 with 89% left on battery with 6:13 minutes remaining and on battery

    Max Capacity: 11869

    Original Capacity: 13000

     

    Diagnostics stats:

     

    Ratings:

     

    Overall: Very Good with (4) stars

    Age: (2) stars :-( Yes I know it's older

    Max Capacity: 11869/13000 (91%

    Cycle Count: (4.5) stars on 82 cycles

    Battery Manufacture Date of 11/04/2009

    Battery Manufacturer: DP, Model bq20z951

     

    I hope this helps!

     

    Prior to doing this I was getting horrible battery readings and very fast battery drain. Only (4) hours and right now after writing this the battery is at 86% with 6:03 minutes remaining :-)

  • richsadams Level 1 Level 1 (70 points)

    weeasle wrote:

     

    Hi richsadams and good peeps of this forum,

     

    I am back to give a brief report of my progress so far as promised.

     

    I upgraded my late 2010 13in macbook air around 22 sep... <snip>

    Hey there Wezley.  Good to hear that things are more-or-less back to normal for your Late 2010 MacBook Air. Mine is still behaving itself as well.

     

    Curious...your MBA should have come with Lion 10.7, but you mentioned Snow Leopard.  I can't recall, did you just try downgrading to SL to see if it would help?

     

    Also, FWIW, the SMC version listed in Hardware Overview will not change once you update.  It's a little confusing to be sure.  The SMC version for a specific MacBook always remains the same even though the core version of SMC (1.5, 1.6, 1.7, etc.) may be updated by Apple.  So don't expect a different number to appear in your Hardware Overview once you update.

     

    Thanks for the follow up and keep us posted!

  • richsadams Level 1 Level 1 (70 points)

    woooter wrote:

     

    A quick update on my situation on an early 2011 15" MacBook Pro.  <snip>

    jasenfrombaldwinsville wrote:

     

    I reinstalled the OS X 10.8.2 combo update after reinstalling Mountain Lion, performed an SMC and PRAM reset and the battery seems to be lasting longer now...<snip>

     

     

    Sweet!  Nice to know your MacBooks are coming around.

     

    Jasen...that sounds pretty good for an (almost) three-year old battery.

     

    Fingers crossed that'll do it.

  • weeasle Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    Hi richsadams,

     

    My late 2010 MBA 13in was purchased here in Australia in late 2010 (when they first came out and boy was I infatuated with the beautiful design - Apple won a new enthusiast that day in the showroom    Anyways, the little beasty came with a USB Drive with SL 10.6.4 and iLife... 

     

     

    After the above posting I went through a full cycle getting about 5hrs (maybe a bit under what but not surprising considering I had not performed a full cycle or inbuilt calibration for a few months as I hadn't been using my MBA as much lately).  So last night after letting it go to 0% battery I left it off for another 6+ hours and then recharged with lid down and 2hrs over full charge to complete inbuilt calibration.

     

    So far sitting here typing this I am connected to airport Wifi with safari 6 running and have been running for 30 mins and meter is showing 92% with 7:02hrs remaining, so if the meter is accurate than I am a bit over what I used to get with SL

     

    Re. the SMC Ver. not changing in Hardware Overview means theres not much point looking at the version number here I guess. I am a little hesitant to upgrade the SMC being offered as 1.7 in Software Update but so far my impression of ML 10.8.2 has been positive and I am OK with the battery life so far so I will go ahead after another battery cycle and report if I notice any change in batter life on the newer SMC and EFI updates being offered...

     

    You were totally right in one of your previous posts when you said if not careful it is easy to develop an OCD over this battery life stuff   I hope I am not developing a nervous tick about my MBA's battery   I do feel for the minority of people who are affected by lower battery life so I posted a couple links and suggestions here - If people are willing to do some research & digging usually things can be rectified.  For those less willing to commit time/expertise they can always sit tight and wait for more OSX updates.

     

    Best,

     

    Wezley

  • richsadams Level 1 Level 1 (70 points)
    Currently Being Moderated
    Oct 2, 2012 11:51 PM (in response to weeasle)

    Sweet Wezley, glad to hear it!  Interesting that the AU model came with SL and the U.S. Lion.

     

    If you're happy with the battery life, etc. there's really no need to update the SMC IMHO.   You'll get the Power Nap feature, but otherwise, if it ain't broke and so on.  If it's working okay now you might as well enjoy it and let Apple work through the rest of the bugs and have another look at it in a few months once the dust has settled. 

     

    My two pence. 

     

    Enjoy and cheers mate!

  • rumo_von_zamonien Calculating status...

    it lasts two hours in real time.

  • rumo_von_zamonien Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    Csound1 wrote:

     

    rumo_von_zamonien wrote:

     

    the battery lasts the 2 hrs estimate the battery calculator shows when running down and looking after the clock.

    And how long does it actually last, not the estimate?

    it lasts two hours when looking after the clock. so the estimate is accurate for me.

  • John Scott1 Level 2 Level 2 (300 points)

    Just to throw my thoughts into the ring. I have a Macbook Pro 2011 13". After updating to 10.8.2 I would say battery life is much better most of the time. I say most of the time because I have found that certain tasks like playing a Hulu video or a Netflix video rapidly drain the battery. Now I know playing video increases battery drain but in my opinion this is a exceptional drain increase and not typical. So now I am just beginning to wonder if Apple tweaked Mountain Lion a bit in certain areas to better hide or diminish the battery drain issues but in reality it has not fully addressed the issues? Kind of like a car getting bad gas miliage. Did they tune up the engine or just over inflate the tires? Its not just the video issue that seems to increase battery drain. I have times where I see the percentage go from 100% battery charge to 87% in just a matter of 15 minutes? When I start to really keep track of battery life, I begin to realize that the OS X estimates of battery life displayed are very misleading.

    Again, is this more of a mind over matter of fact? Because while I see a little better battery life, I also see my battery status showing something that also looks to be better. But upon a closer look maybe the battery life is not so much better.

  • raymondfromco Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    My experience with 10.8.2 is that the initial battery reading may be 6 hrs, but it rapidly drops, and can bounce around plus or minus by hour increments. In the end, I'm still getting only 4 hours of life by the clock.

  • richsadams Level 1 Level 1 (70 points)

    10.8.2 Suplemental Update 1.0 released.  No mention of battery issues...but you never know.  Interested to hear if this one makes any difference for anyone still having problems.

     

    http://9to5mac.com/2012/10/04/apple-releases-os-x-10-8-2-supplemental-update-off ering-fix-for-safari-parental-controls-and-japanese-character-support/

     

    Screen Shot 2012-10-04 at 10.27.22 PM.png

     

    64GB of RAM?  Wow!

  • muuzmuuz Calculating status...

    Updated with the 10.8.2 supplemental patch, no change in battery life. Still just 3-4 hours of usage on Mountain Lion when I had 6-7 on Lion real time. The battery reading is now starting from around 4:30 - 5:00 compared to 8:30-9:00 on Lion. And I even waited for the 10.8.2 for upgrading because of the battery problems Mountain Lion is causing. Wish I had never considered it at all :/

  • wullewuu Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    Hey,

     

    back on ML again after 3 weeks Lion... And it is the same **** as before... With Lion i had 7-8 hours, gave ml another chance and it has 3-4 hours. What now?! Called the Apple Support but told me they had never heard of this problem... lol... How stupid they think i am??? So what to do now?

  • Sulaiman.K Level 1 Level 1 (10 points)

    They're just stupid (even this happend to me)! It won't help if you called AppleCare or Apple Support as they don't know what's the resource does it caused the issue.

     

    Only the way to do is we need to complain this issue and publish to all other media so Apple will mention the issue it would be shame if this goes to publicly and newspapers will also show the result of this issues so none will consider buying MBP or RMBP until this case gets resolved by Apple.

     

    This issue was caused us since it's on Beta version of Mountain Lion and i have already reported Apple that the issue is still didn't fix and i still didn't get any words from them.

     

    At least now i'm still on your side and i have tried everything including calling AppleCare, trying the SMC resets and doing the Clean Installation nothing changed sounds like the OS isn't yet fixed properly for portable devices.

     

    Anyway for now i'm getting 4-5 hours of battery life and it should be normal use 6-7 hours.

     

    Hopefully if Apple didn't fix this issue in 10.8.3 we should give a shout out to Media

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