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iPhone 4S battery dies with 19% left. Why?

19639 Views 28 Replies Latest reply: Mar 23, 2014 6:49 PM by Lawrence Finch RSS
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dtshimizu Calculating status...
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Feb 27, 2012 6:05 PM

After not being able to delete a TV episode video I had bought from the iTunes store (support file 192020713), I restored the phone as the only way left to wipe it. I restored from back up, no problem. Out yesterday shooting photos, the alert that the battery was down to 20% came up. A minute later, the phone turned itself off as it does when the battery is dead. Took it home. Plugged it in. When it came back on the battery percentage read 19%.


Same thing happened today. Was shooting photos. The last I saw, I had about 25% left. A few minutes later, dead. Again, after plugging in at home, 19%.


Before the restore, I had no problems with the battery life or phone apps.


Latest iOS, latest iTunes. All up to date.

  • Thunstrom Calculating status...
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    Feb 28, 2012 8:07 PM (in response to dtshimizu)

    The EXACT same thing has just happened to me tonight, although I have not restored the phone ever, or added any new apps in the last week.

    The battery less than 20% warning came up, I took a picture, then the phone shut down. Would not turn back on and the icon appeared saying it needed to be charged. Plugged it in to charge, and when it came back on I had 19% battery.

  • Richard London Calculating status...
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    Jan 9, 2013 12:43 AM (in response to dtshimizu)


    Has anyone managed to find a fix for this?

    My 4s has started shutting down with 20% battery left.

    I have ios 6.0.1 installed.



  • Streefkerk Calculating status...
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    Jan 24, 2013 1:04 PM (in response to Richard London)

    Same problem here.. My 4s dies with various levels of battery left. It shuts off, cant turn it on unless I plug it in to the net, and then once it is plugged in it shows a percentage of 10 - 20%. Tonight I turned it on after another shut down and it said it had 23% left, which seems plausible as I didnt use it so long for today; cancelling the possibility that it was actually on 0% but indicated a higher level. Ill do a reset in a minit, see if it works.

  • ClaireLucyJ Calculating status...
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    Jan 25, 2013 3:00 PM (in response to dtshimizu)

    If you manage to resolve the problem please could you tell me how. Never had a problem with my 4S then suddenly on Monday it started shutting off just after it reached 20% , it showed the warning then I continued to use the phone and it powered off and has done so several times since. Have made an appointment for Thursday as the device is still under warranty but wondering if it could be something easily resolved?



  • srettie Calculating status...
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    Jan 25, 2013 5:29 PM (in response to ClaireLucyJ)

    my iphone 5 has had similar issues trying a restore to new  fingers crossed

  • mxbaig Calculating status...
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    Mar 8, 2013 6:45 AM (in response to dtshimizu)

    Try this first

    1. Try draining the battery all the way till it doesn't turn on again (Keep trying to turn it on when the charge icon comes on the screen)

    2. Then charge it all the way to 100% (Do not use your phone as it is charging)

    3. Then drain all the way back down to 0% again and do the same as step 1.

    4. Charge all the way back upto 100% (Do not use it as it's charging again) and report back here if that help's the problems


    <Link Edited By Host>

  • ClaireLucyJ Level 1 Level 1 (5 points)
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    Jan 26, 2013 12:13 AM (in response to mxbaig)

    Thank you, I'm in the middle of trying to drain the battery now, just a couple of questions... What do I do if it shuts off just after 20% again? Do I continue the process as if it had shut off at 0%? When you say 'drain it completely' will the battery indicator eventually disappear from the screen when I I keep trying to turn the phone on? Do I need that icon to fully disappear before charging? Also I have read some advice to do a hard reset of the phone when I originally plug the phone back in... Will a hard reset erase the data from my phone? Sorry for all the questions, I just want to ensure that I do this correctly as I don't really want to waste anyone's time taking the phone back if its something I can rectify myself.


    Thank you.

  • ClaireLucyJ Level 1 Level 1 (5 points)
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    Jan 26, 2013 12:15 AM (in response to dtshimizu)

    I am going to try the suggestion that has been made, did you ever try this? Just with you still having the issues from time to time...



  • ClaireLucyJ Level 1 Level 1 (5 points)
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    Jan 26, 2013 12:16 AM (in response to srettie)

    Please let me know if it works!



  • Richard London Level 1 Level 1 (15 points)
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    Jan 26, 2013 4:22 AM (in response to ClaireLucyJ)

    I had this issue, I backed up my phone to my mac. Then did a restore, when it asked me if I wanted to restore from backup I selected the backup I had just done. Battery drained all the way down to 0 last night. This morning it has charged as normal.

  • ClaireLucyJ Level 1 Level 1 (5 points)
    Currently Being Moderated
    Jan 26, 2013 2:29 PM (in response to Richard London)

    Thank you, just tried to calibrate the battery and reset the phone so going to see how it goes over the next few days.



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