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Question: Dead battery and strange behavior, need advice!

Left PB 15" on sleep while on vacation for 10 days, no power cord attached (don't tell me it was dumb, now I know...) The battery is about 1 1/2 years old (my third) purchased from Apple store, lasting a little over an hour when fully charged.

When I got back the battery was completely dead, of course, and not charging. Tried to power with cord attached, unsuccessfully. Reset PRAM and PMU, got the computer to turn on, but:

1) only turns on if I take the battery out, disconnect the cord for a while, then connect the cord always leaving the battery out

2) doesn't wake from sleep mode, need to disconnect from power and restart

3) if I put battery back on, the charger light goes amber for a 3/4 minutes, then green but no charge
Battery is recognized on Profiler, charge is 0% and says "not charging"

4) don't know if related, but doesn't retain network WPA password anymore

any ideas?
would a new battery restore normal functioning?

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Apr 6, 2010 2:38 PM in response to renpar61 In response to renpar61

Welcome to the Apple discussions.

Well, this is quite a pickle! When you remove the battery and power adapter, reconnect the power adapter and boot up, does it start up with some 19xx last century date? If yes, then your PRAM battery, which is a round lithium cell battery inside the Powerbook, needs replacing. I think you'll find that also affects retention of the WPA password and ability to wake from sleep, since having a functional PRAM battery is what keeps memory intact during sleep. If the date is 19xx with booting after all power is removed, I'd replace the PRAM battery first, then continue debugging.

There are only 4 components in the charging circuit: Power adapter, DC-in card, battery, and logic board. Sounds like your power adapter is working, and the DC-in card is likely working too. Without seeing battery stats, battery is suspect (there have been a number of Apple batteries, especially those replaced for free, that have been failing after a year or so ... just not lasting). And then there's the logic board. Either the battery is failing or your logic board could be suspect. I would want to test it with another battery to see if the symptoms change.

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Question marked as Helpful

Apr 6, 2010 2:38 PM in response to renpar61 In response to renpar61

Welcome to the Apple discussions.

Well, this is quite a pickle! When you remove the battery and power adapter, reconnect the power adapter and boot up, does it start up with some 19xx last century date? If yes, then your PRAM battery, which is a round lithium cell battery inside the Powerbook, needs replacing. I think you'll find that also affects retention of the WPA password and ability to wake from sleep, since having a functional PRAM battery is what keeps memory intact during sleep. If the date is 19xx with booting after all power is removed, I'd replace the PRAM battery first, then continue debugging.

There are only 4 components in the charging circuit: Power adapter, DC-in card, battery, and logic board. Sounds like your power adapter is working, and the DC-in card is likely working too. Without seeing battery stats, battery is suspect (there have been a number of Apple batteries, especially those replaced for free, that have been failing after a year or so ... just not lasting). And then there's the logic board. Either the battery is failing or your logic board could be suspect. I would want to test it with another battery to see if the symptoms change.

Apr 6, 2010 2:38 PM

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Apr 7, 2010 7:56 PM in response to renpar61 In response to renpar61

These instructions explain how to replace the PRAM battery: http://www.ifixit.com/Guide/Repair/Installing-PowerBook-G4-Aluminum-15-Inch-1-1- 5-GHz-PRAM-Battery/224/1 and is applicable to >1.5Ghz systems too.

If you decide to do it, buy yourself a new phillips head screwdriver size 00 and you'll need a small allen hex wrench where the directions call for a torx screwdriver (at least mine does). Suggest using cups to keep track of the screws by each step of the instructions. And double check any cables touched, as it's not unusual to complete what you're doing, buckle it all back up, and not be able to start up, because the keyboard to logic board cable isn't on entirely.

Apr 7, 2010 7:56 PM

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Question: Dead battery and strange behavior, need advice!