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Thread: Mysterious battery charging issue

  1. #1

    Member Since
    May 23, 2006
    Mysterious battery charging issue
    So I have a G4 iBook (14" early 2004) which I love dearly. Sadly, a few months after my apple care expired, I started noticing an odd battery issue: an "x" now appears in the upper menu bar battery icon. The message is: 'no batteries available'.

    I know what you're thinking: somehow the battery is not communicating to the computer. Not so! If I unplug the power adapter, the computer stays on! So, it IS actually drawing power from the battery, but Os X (10.4.11 now) doesn't realize that, I guess.

    There are a few other odd (and annoying) related issues:

    1) the battery will drain normally when the power adapter is not plugged in, but I will no longer get the warning about the computer going to sleep to preserve the contents of memory. It simply drains down to empty and then shuts off (requires plug in and restart).

    2) I can get X icon to disappear sometimes by: plugging in the power adapter, removing the battery, putting it back in. Then the display goes back to normal, it tells me the % charge remaining, and the adapter plug turns amber, thus charging the battery. Sometimes I have to remove and reinsert the battery a few times to get it to start charging. Sometimes it looks like it starts charging, and then it goes back to the X again. Sometimes it charges, but the icon doesn't show that it is charging, it says "(0%)", but the lights on the battery show that it IS charging. weird...

    Resetting the PMU and PRAM/NVRAM did not help.

    So, last week, all of the sudden, my logic board starts to fail. It's the dreaded "whirring fans of death"! Luckily, I managed to get my data off the hard disk using the 'press on the computer next to the tracking pad' trick, and then brought the poor thing to the genius bar! Yay Apple! They fixed it for free even though it was out of warranty!

    I didn't even mention the battery charging issue to the Genius, since I assumed that the logic board failure was related, and that the logic board replacement would fix the battery charging problem as well. In fact, they replaced the "inverter board assembly" too. All for free. wow.

    Now the computer is running great....but....I still have the battery charging issue, just the same as before.

    Any ideas?? Thanks!

  2. #2

    idlerat's Avatar
    Member Since
    Sep 19, 2007
    Did you check if it was one of the recalled ones(I know it was ages ago, but personally I never bothered)?

    To be honest though, it doesn't sound like a battery issue. If your local apple store isn't too far away, I'd take it in and ask them to try another battery in it, that way you'll know for sure if it's your battery causing the problems.

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