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  • Advice on new laptop battery

    Posted on Slowpoke47 Comment on the AskWoody Lounge

    Home Forums AskWoody support PC hardware Questions: What hardware should I get? Advice on new laptop battery

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      • #2141578 Reply
        Slowpoke47
        AskWoody Plus

        Not sure if this is the correct forum (mod’s?)- New battery needed for Acer laptop.  OEM battery is 6-cell, Li-Ion, p/n AS10D31, rating 10.8v, 4.15Ah.  Many choices vis-a-vis Ah (or, mAh) ratings, manufacturers, guarantees, as well as price.  After cruising online, looks like this one  https://www.amazon.com/NinjaBatt-Battery-AS10D31-AS10D51-AS10D81/dp/B01KXRT9Z6/ref=sr_1_10?keywords=acer+laptop+battery&qid=1581866748&refinements=p_76%3A1249137011%2Cp_72%3A1248879011%2Cp_n_condition-type%3A2224371011&rnid=2224369011&rps=1&s=electronics&sr=1-10 is a reasonable choice.  Advice appreciated, thanks!

        Linux Mint Mate 19.2

      • #2141689 Reply
        dg1261
        AskWoody_MVP

        Li-ion batteries on Amazon are a lottery. Sometimes you get a good one, sometimes you don’t. It really doesn’t have much to do with the vendor, as they don’t make the cells. I’ve bought two NinjaBatt batteries off Amazon in the past couple years. One is still doing well two years later, but the other one died after about 12 months.

        Beware that there are restrictions on shipping Li-ion batteries by air freight, so it matters where the battery is coming from. You’ll likely need to find a vendor that’s close enough that it can be shipped by ground.

        I’ve bought perhaps a dozen Amazon batteries over the years, and sometimes they last and sometimes they don’t make it more than a year. I’ll make a note of the “good” vendors but when I go back to them for another battery, I get a dud. That convinces me it’s not the vendor, and I’ve got a 50-50 chance of getting a good battery no matter who the vendor is. None of them has a pipeline to the “best” cells, no matter what they say in their advertising.

        I recently bought two batteries from batteriesplusbulbs.com, to whom I was attracted because they have several brick-and-mortar outlets in my area. They’re twice as expensive, but if half the Amazon batteries I get don’t last, the cost difference is a wash.

        I asked the tech (who also does battery refurbishing — though not laptop batteries because of the welded cases) why their batteries should be better than those from the ubiquitous Amazon vendors. He said Duracell makes the cells, so presumably has a hand in quality control. But he said mostly the difference is in the freshness of the cells. Li-ion cells will deteriorate over time and no longer hold a full charge, and with laptop batteries being made with spot-welded cases you never know how long a given battery has been sitting on the shelf — especially for laptops long out of production. B+B moves enough product that he was confident the cells in their batteries had been manufactured more recently than what I was likely to find on Amazon.

        I’ve long used a Nirsoft utility called BatteryInfoView to keep tabs on battery health. Particularly useful is the wear level rating, a measure of full capacity vs design capacity — IOW, what is now 100% capacity vs what was originally 100%. As they age, the wear level will drop and they’ll no longer hold as much charge as they used to. I usually opt to replace mine when the wear level gets down to about 50-60%.

        In 15 years I’ve never had an Amazon battery register higher than 95% when “new”, and some only registered 85% as soon as I took them out of the box. Presumably, those had been sitting on the shelf longer. The two B+B batteries I bought recently measured 100% right out of the box. I haven’t had them long enough to assess longevity, but after a few months they’re still registering 100%.

        2 users thanked author for this post.
      • #2141740 Reply
        MrJimPhelps
        AskWoody_MVP

        I strongly suggest you get the OEM battery, not an off-brand. For example, get a genuine Dell battery for a Dell computer, and a genuine Acer battery for an Acer computer.

        If I couldn’t find the genuine OEM battery, or if it was way too expensive, I would get a name brand, such as Duracell. I would not get a brand that I have never heard of, because it may be a piece of junk.

        Group "L" (Linux Mint)
        with Windows 8.1 running in a VM
        1 user thanked author for this post.
      • #2141845 Reply
        Paul T
        AskWoody MVP

        6-cell, Li-Ion, p/n AS10D31, rating 10.8v, 4.15Ah

        When replacing batteries you need 2 things.

        1. Voltage must be the same.
        2. Amperes per hour (AH) must be equal or greater. Modern cells are generally higher capacity for a given size.

        cheers, Paul

        1 user thanked author for this post.
      • #2141866 Reply
        Slowpoke47
        AskWoody Plus

        @dg1261- Thanks for the writeup.  These batteries are blind items- as Forrest Gump said, “…like a box of chocolates- you never know what you’re gonna get.” This laptop shows a build date of 10/15/2015 and the battery is more than a year older, made in Aug. 2014.

        I’ve long used a Nirsoft utility called BatteryInfoView

        The description says it works on “any version of Windows.”  Last year we moved to Linux due to Win7 EOL.  I could try it to see if it is compatible.

        I strongly suggest you get the OEM battery, not an off-brand.

        Buying OEM parts when repairing anything has been my usual strategy.  But from time to time I have found that the OEM piece is in fact the off brand stamped with the OEM logo.

        Linux Mint Mate 19.2

        1 user thanked author for this post.
        • #2172108 Reply
          MrJimPhelps
          AskWoody_MVP

          The description says it works on “any version of Windows.” Last year we moved to Linux due to Win7 EOL. I could try it to see if it is compatible.

          The only concern I would have for Windows vs Linux is that Windows might be better able to take advantage of some advanced battery functionality than Linux (for example, detecting when the battery gets down to a certain power level might be more precise in Windows than in Linux – I don’t know this to be the case, I’m just suggesting something that might be the case).

          For normal usage, I don’t believe you will find any problem with the battery in a Linux environment if it works for Windows. In my thought, the key is: will the battery work for your particular computer?

          Group "L" (Linux Mint)
          with Windows 8.1 running in a VM
          1 user thanked author for this post.
      • #2141878 Reply
        Slowpoke47
        AskWoody Plus

        Any comment on this review for the battery linked above?

        <i>5.0 out of 5 stars</i> CURE THE BATTERY FIRST FOR BEST LIFE

        July 11, 2017

        Verified Purchase

        The Ninjabatt arrived with a 90% charge. I cured the batt first by putting it in my laptop and running it down to 8%. (took about 4 hrs). Shut off laptop, plugged it in and fully recharged it to 99% unplugged from outlet, worked with it, and ran it down to nothing again. Did this three times, as suggested. Fully recharged and removed it from computer. Put it in a week later to work out on my back deck. Still showing full charge and used it again for aprox 4-41/2 hrs. Fully recharged it and put battery away because I plugged into house current. I never leave the battery in the computer when plugged into an oulet. (I always charge the battery with the computer off, then remove batt until needed. I’ve been told it’s not good for batt cells, (shortens their life expectancy), to always leave batt in while plugged into wall outlet.True or not? Don’t know. My last batt lasted 7 yrs of heavy use. You call the ball. As of now I’ve got no complaints. We’ll see.

        Linux Mint Mate 19.2

      • #2141904 Reply
        Paul T
        AskWoody MVP

        Another fake review, or a genuine one?
        I tend to look at the bad reviews to get an idea of what might be wrong.

        cheers, Paul

        1 user thanked author for this post.
      • #2141910 Reply
        Slowpoke47
        AskWoody Plus

        Another fake review, or a genuine one?
        I tend to look at the bad reviews to get an idea of what might be wrong.

        cheers, Paul

        I do the same.  Recently saw a claim, valid or not I don’t know, that Amazon has for some time run an incentive or reward program for certain customers to write favorable reviews.

        What caught my attention with this review was the procedure outlined for breaking in the battery- any thoughts on that?

        Linux Mint Mate 19.2

      • #2141944 Reply
        Paul T
        AskWoody MVP

        It is a good idea to run the battery to virtually flat and then charge it overnight with the machine off. This allows the laptop / Windows to learn the battery, but you only need to do it once.

        cheers, Paul

        2 users thanked author for this post.
      • #2141950 Reply
        Slowpoke47
        AskWoody Plus

        Acer’s site shows a 4400mAh replacement battery for $35 plus shipping, less capacity than the Ninjabatt above yet greater than the original.  But their warranty is 1 year, same as most of the aftermarket vendors.  I would hope that’s a conservative guesstimate of battery life.

        And, of course, no assurance that their vendor is better than an aftermarket one.  A skeptic could say the two maybe came from the same mfr.

        Perhaps checking the date on whichever one we get wouldn’t hurt- if too old, return it.

        Linux Mint Mate 19.2

        • #2172115 Reply
          MrJimPhelps
          AskWoody_MVP

          If Acer is selling the battery on their website, then that means that they approve of that battery for your particular laptop. For me, that would give me the confidence to purchase that battery.

          I’ll bet most computer vendors sell batteries made by third parties; I doubt that any of them make their own batteries. Likely, they provide the specs to a battery company, then test the final product to make sure it works with their computer.

          Just like with circuit boards. I doubt any computer vendor makes their own boards. Rather they order their boards from someone they trust.

          Group "L" (Linux Mint)
          with Windows 8.1 running in a VM
          1 user thanked author for this post.
      • #2142120 Reply
        Slowpoke47
        AskWoody Plus

        While mulling over which way to go, went back to the Acer site, and in the interim they had instituted a 20% site discount.  So they bought me for $7.  Didn’t let on that that was my choice anyway.  Battery on order.  Thanks to all for the insight.

        Linux Mint Mate 19.2

      • #2169346 Reply
        Slowpoke47
        AskWoody Plus

        New battery received today from Acer.  Snapped into case, machine would not start.  Plugged in charger, machine started, but battery status icon not shown in tray.  Computer works normally with old battery installed- of course, battery does not hold much of a charge but laptop runs as expected, and indefinitely with charger connected.

        Since I never replaced a battery before, I didn’t know what to expect.  But I got the impression that the new battery should have some level of charge.  The new one fits exactly but has a slightly different part number and is marked 11.1v compared to the original at 10.8v and slightly more capacity, 4300mAh compared to 4130.  Just now rechecked the Acer site and the new battery is their specified replacement.

        So- lacking context, I’m here to ask for suggestions…

        Linux Mint Mate 19.2

        • #2169348 Reply
          jabeattyauditor
          AskWoody Lounger

          Since I never replaced a battery before, I didn’t know what to expect.  But I got the impression that the new battery should have some level of charge.

          I would expect it to be discharged, especially if it’s for an older model laptop. Charge the beast up for 24 hours, then check for positive results.

          Btw, you double-checked for packing tape and/or insulating plastic on the terminals, right?

          1 user thanked author for this post.
      • #2169355 Reply
        Slowpoke47
        AskWoody Plus

        Btw, you double-checked for packing tape and/or insulating plastic on the terminals, right?

        Yes.  The new connectors look identical to the old and there is nothing that looks readily removable.

        Based on earlier comments in this thread, my intention was to let the new battery charge overnight with the laptop off.  I was concerned that the battery charge icon was missing.

        Linux Mint Mate 19.2

      • #2169384 Reply
        Paul T
        AskWoody MVP

        Flat batteries often take some time to register a charge. Be patient.

        cheers, Paul

        1 user thanked author for this post.
        • #2169435 Reply
          Slowpoke47
          AskWoody Plus

          Thanks.  No trouble being patient as long as I know I’m not waiting for something that will never happen.

          Linux Mint Mate 19.2

      • #2169707 Reply
        Slowpoke47
        AskWoody Plus

        Back in business- new battery charged and working.  My thanks to all who posted.

        Linux Mint Mate 19.2

      • #2171706 Reply
        Slowpoke47
        AskWoody Plus

        A postscript- The new battery, 4300mAh, just slightly more than the original at 4130, goes from fully charged to 20% remaining in a little under 2 hours with Firefox opened to a website that runs a prerecorded news program, not in full screen mode.  We just left that site open, no other activity.

        Of course, the original battery had been failing for some time, so we’re not positive, but we recall that it ran substantially longer than that when new.  Could be memory is deceiving us. Interested to hear others’ experience on this.

        Linux Mint Mate 19.2

        • #2172118 Reply
          MrJimPhelps
          AskWoody_MVP

          That performance is slightly worse than my replacement Dell-branded battery in my Dell laptop.

          Group "L" (Linux Mint)
          with Windows 8.1 running in a VM
          1 user thanked author for this post.
      • #2171899 Reply
        Paul T
        AskWoody MVP

        Did the replaced battery also drop to 20% quickly? If so it’s probably the charger circuit failing.
        How long does the laptop run before finally giving up?

        cheers, Paul

        1 user thanked author for this post.
        • #2171944 Reply
          Slowpoke47
          AskWoody Plus

          The original battery began to fail gradually a couple of months ago- not able to pinpoint a date, of course. Symptom was very short runtime on a “full” charge- ultimately well less than an hour.

          With either battery, the “fully charged” light on the laptop case as well as the battery icon in the tray both indicate(d) the charging cycle working as expected.  I had attempted to read the voltage on the original battery with a multimeter but couldn’t get a reading because I couldn’t determine just where to take one.  The charger does show the correct voltage.

          I would think, if the internal charging circuitry were failing rather than the original battery, that the new battery performance would mimic the original.

          To answer your question, we didn’t run the new battery completely dead- the message on the tray icon read, charge at 20%, 30 minutes left, after slightly less than 2 hours’ use.

          What sort of runtime should I expect from a healthy battery with the scenario described above?

           

          Linux Mint Mate 19.2

      • #2171968 Reply
        Paul T
        AskWoody MVP

        The replacement may have been old stock so it could already have problems – they don’t like being stored flat.

        Run it until the laptop shuts down, charge it up and if it’s still not happy talk to the supplier.

        cheers, Paul

        1 user thanked author for this post.
      • #2172030 Reply
        Slowpoke47
        AskWoody Plus

        I actually did just that- currently have a query pending with the supplier (Acer).  Battery has a date on it of 5/19.  Still interested to get a range of runtime to expect, for context.

        Linux Mint Mate 19.2

      • #2172698 Reply
        Slowpoke47
        AskWoody Plus

        Update- After unhelpful telephone results with Acer help lines, I sent my tale of woe, in four-part harmony and full orchestration*, via email to their customer service address.  Had a very polite response in less than 1/2 hour with an apology and a promise to send out a replacement battery.  If they follow through, couldn’t ask for more.

        *apologies to Arlo Guthrie, “Alice’s Restaurant”

        Linux Mint Mate 19.2

        1 user thanked author for this post.
      • #2176421 Reply
        Slowpoke47
        AskWoody Plus

        Update- Acer did keep their promise- new battery arrived today.  On installation it was completely flat, no tray icon, just like the first one.  With charger connected, icon did appear after a few minutes.  With laptop off, blue “full charge” light displayed after 55 minutes or so.

        Removed charger, booted machine, tray icon showed full charge- “99%, 5 hr. 45 minutes left.”  Left desktop open with power option set to “never” suspend, etc., object to see how long first full charge would last.  1 hour later- “65%, 2 hr. remaining” then an additional hour later- “40%, 1 hr 10 min. remaining” and after another 1/2 hour- “19%, 10 min. remaining.”  Total elapsed time ~2 1/2 hours all told.

        In truth, I didn’t expect the running assessments to be accurate.  Also- this was just the initial charge/ discharge cycle, and could be that subsequent cycles will be longer.  This is in fact somewhat better than the first replacement, but well short of the original. which IIRC powered this machine for around 3-4 hours when new.

        Acer did all they could to help, but I assume they don’t make their own batteries.  We’ll see how this plays out going forward, and if need be we’ll buy a larger capacity aftermarket battery from a vendor who offers some sort of guarantee.  Worst case, we’ll just plug it in more often.

        Linux Mint Mate 19.2

      • #2176424 Reply
        jabeattyauditor
        AskWoody Lounger

        What sort of power plan are you using? It’s kind of hard to judge battery performance when we don’t know if you have it set to Max of if it goes into power-saving mode at some point.

        • #2176439 Reply
          Slowpoke47
          AskWoody Plus

          Haven’t tried the various choices but the comparison is between the original and replacement batteries, both on the same settings.  One wild card might be that this machine now runs Mint since Win7 is history, but the original battery was failing before the switch, a couple of months ago.  I think Mint actually is easier on the resources than Win7, but it’s not simple to make an apples-to-apples comparison due to differing background services, even on computers running the same OS.

          Another factor with this laptop is that the display is large- 17″ diagonal- which likely eats the battery faster than a smaller machine, but that doesn’t affect the old-to-new equation either.

          Linux Mint Mate 19.2

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