Very, very strange as I've had the same problem as has one of my friends. Couldn't be bothered to go on a hunt for a hair dryer so I rubbed it for about 20 seconds between my hands and it came back to life so thanks for the advice!
I'll pass this on to my friend who has the same problem on the original MacBook and see if it works.
The blowdryer trick is a great find and all but it is ridiculous it has to come to that. It's clearly a hardware problem related to either the battery or the Magsafe board. I have the same issue in both Holland and Thailand. I have the same issue using an original Macbook pro 85W adapter (recently bought to power my 2007 model) an original White Macbook adapter AND the macbook air adapter that came with it.
This is definetly a production issue and I have a feeling each and everyone will run into this problem sooner or later, frequent and critic users like people here will notice it earlier, casual users and people who don't really care enough to post onto a forum (like me) will run into it but never reach out.
Going to the store to have G(lorified hip sales people)eniuses look at at it will only lead to BS like 'it's not common' and 'weird' but usually never to the truth.
It takes a lot for Apple to admit to their mistakes it even takes legal charges sometimes. I used to work in techincal support back in Holland back when there were no official Apple stores but only Premium and Authorised resellers and literally hundreds of people came with their macbooks (both black and white) with top casings being damaged and torn. It was clearly the shape of the screen and the magnets that caused this damage and I pointed it out in official meetings with Apple representation but they denied it. An even bigger number of people came back to the shop with those macbooks not booting, the problem was the lubricant used while inserting RAM modules which dried up and became powder which prevented it from making proper contact, simply removing them and cleaning them solved the issue each and every time. I literally did it hundreds of times. Yet still they refused to admit this was the case.
Apple should fix each and every unit that has this problem but the only way is to make Apple do it, then maybe they'll offer extended warranty so we can all have them replaced without having to pay for a thing.
How to make them I don't know, but that's the way to go, if anyone has legit info on how previous extended warranties were ignited that would really help. ...please don't mention Applecare because it's the biggest mistake one can make.
Same deal here. MacBook Air purchased in late 2011 in Beijing (from the official Apple Store). Problems started summer 2012, but moving the connection around into different positions until finding one that worked did the trick until a week ago. It gradually got harder and harder to find a position in which it would charge, and eventually it quit charging altogether.
Bought a new brick, charged for a few days without problem or incident. It's been back again and getting progressively worse the past few days... now nearly as bad as the old one was - in some ways, worse (it's easier to get charging, but quits charging randomly and sometimes without the computer being touched, which it wasn't doing with the old charger). Blowdrying doesn't seem to make any difference (the brick's already pretty warm anyway). Only thing that seems to work is spending a few minutes trying different connections until this thing charges. Move the computer a little bit and it quits charging, and you've got to get to work connecting and disconnecting the power again until it starts up again.
This is my first Mac product. I switched to it because Macs were supposedly higher quality and I'd get more bang for my buck - I work on a computer 14 hours a day for work and need something reliable. Thing isn't even 18 months old now though and it's become a pain to use... real shame. Seems like there are no quality computer manufacturers left (Lenovos overheat and slow way down, Toshibas have trackpad problems that require you to use a mouse, Acers don't last, and Macs won't charge - the search for a functional laptop that lasts longer than a year goes on).
Having the same issue on my 2011 MBA 13"
It happened once before a few months back and don't know what I did to stop it from happening but it started again yesterday. Only noticed it while working because I am getting interferance with my external speaker that is connected and the screen is dimming every now and then when it switches between battery and charging.
Charger is original, had no issues with it and seems in perfect working order. Problem for me seems to be when the MBA gets to 96% charge. The machine thinks the battery is full and then starts switching between battery and charging again.
if I remove the charger and let the battery drain for a while then plug the charger back in it's fine until the charge level gets back to 96% and then the issue starts again.
Was thnking it was a software issue with something I had running (Flash, CITRIX) but don't think.
I am having the same problem for a few weeks now.
What does the trick for me is following: Try sockets multiple times. Even if they did not work when you tried first time, keep trying until you find one which works (for me, sometimes i just try the same socket after 10 minutes and it works fine).
Once you find the right socket on which the charger start charging, you can switch to any socket and it will be charging as well.
It is frustrating and I have no clue why it happens, and first time it happened I was in panic because I was travelling in the morning, but now I just don't loose patience and keep trying the sockets and all goes back to normal (if it can be called normal ) .
Apple support in my country is completely useless so you no point going to them...
This is a "me too" adding some hopefully useful elements.
I'm experiencing the problem with my MBA 13, initially once in a while, now constantly.
After a number of attempts I found a way to (temporary) fix the problem:
1. Situation: MBA charger (output: 14.5 Volt) not charging - light can be randomly either green or red or off. Please note that I've 2 MBA chargers, one brand new. When my MBA stops charging nothing changes whichever of the two chargers I use. Furthermore: the behaviour of the light is the same at the same time for both of them: it demonstrates that the problem is related to the MBA and not to the charger.
2. I plug in a MacBook charger (appearenty identical to MBA's but output: 16.5 Volt): my MBA wakes up and its battery starts charging again
3. I then plug back one of my MBA chargers: they both work!
This could explain also my frustrating experience at Genius': I was there 4 times and everytime when they plugged their charger in my MBA eveything was fine. And afterwards also my charger was working fine. My idea is that - having to deal with any kind of Apple devices - the Genius' chargers are the most powerful ones (16.5 Volt). This would also be a good explanation of the "heating effect": when the charger is warm/hot, the voltage is a little bit increased, at least at the beginning. This "unlock" the MBA charging, obtaining the same effect of giving the MBA a little shock with a 16.5 Volt charger.
...I had a really, really good examination of the problem. I used the hair-dryer trick and that worked..for a short time. Then I noticed a weakness in the cable where is joins the charger block.
After much fiddling I think the problem is to do with where the cable joins the charger block. I think there is an inherant weakness there that gets worse over a long period, when the cable is pulled accidently or curled to store away. Mine eventually gave up and I noticed the cable in that area had crumpled...the cabl just isn't sturdy enough or the 'join' is too flimsy/weak to deal with being stored as a curled cable or if it gets tugged or pulled...as it invariably will.
Hope this helps.
It could be the cable in your case, but it is not the problem in general. I have had the problem with the macbook pro charger and the macbook air charger, the latter even had to be replaced after the cable melted due to the unstable flow of electricity caused by the port. The problem in this topic is most definitely caused by the 1/0 logic board that connects to the charger.
Okay, I'm back. Took my machine to the Apple store and was pleasantly surprised to have the tech type its number in and tell me they'd replace some parts and it'd be covered under warranty. Most companies go out of their way to avoid covering anything under warranty, even if you're still within the warranty period... I assumed I was out of it, and didn't have my receipt anymore.
Anyway, they took my MBA in the shop for about 3.5 days, then called me down, I went and picked it up, and it's working fine now. They replaced the I/O board.
This was about 2.5 or 3 weeks ago... the power supply has briefly faded out maybe 3 times since then (and my computer is ALWAYS on), but a quick wiggle would get things working again.
I noticed at the Apple store all the newer MBAs have much bulkier adapter connectors (where the cord connects to the computer's port)... not likely Apple would go to a bulkier connecter unless there were too many problems with the older, sleeker variety. My guess is the company realized the problem and quietly changed to something chunkier but less problematic, while fixing faulty parts under warranty among those who brought them in.
Well, I'm annoyed I spent a year jiggling the adapter for increasingly longer periods of time just to get a charge, but I'm impressed that Apple declined an opportunity to make more cash and instead fixed the problem on the house. Looks like I was too hasty in writing the company off... Apple, I continue to be your customer.
I'm happy for you that your problem is solved without being charged for it. Can you estimate when you bought it? Was it a 2010 or 2011 model? I had noticed they changed the size too. This is most likely because there were problems with the 1/0 unit and the charger connecting to it but it could also just be another way to sell chargers and disable the chance of using old chargers from other notebooks ...similar to the iPhone stunt.
I wonder because if it's outside the warranty that means they offer extended warranty on a frequently occuring problem. The shop you brought it, was it really an Apple store or an Authorised reseller? Your info could really help me because here in Thaialnd the staff in (obviously not real) Apple stores are a bunch of knuckle heads who have no idea what they are selling or what the insides of the machines look like.