Battery needs to be replaced every year?!?! - General Hardware - Laptop - Dell Community

Battery needs to be replaced every year?!?!


Laptop computer Forums (Audio, General Hardware, Video)

Battery needs to be replaced every year?!?!

  • Okay.  I am soo fed up with Dell!  They recently told me that a battery is a "consumable product," meaning basically that, based on the time it took this battery to die, I will have to replace my battery at least once a year.  I have NEVER, EVER heard of ANYONE having to replace their laptop battery.  I understand if you don't plug it in and keep it charged, it will die...but I always kept it plugged in.  They then proceeded to compare it to a cell phone battery which I told them I have never had to replace a cell phone battery (nor has anyone I know) because it gets charged!!!  I know one thing for sure, I will never get another Dell product and as soon as I can, I will get something else (alhtough for the time being I am stuck with this piece! because I am in college and cannot afford to buy another laptop...this one should've lasted me a long time).  Has anyone ever had their battery die?  Has anyone ever replaced their battery every year? or at all?
  • With heavy use you can expect the battery to last about a year -- it will likely last longer but you'll probably find the amount of time you can use it diminishing.  I've had mine for 3 years now -- it certainly still works but it only lasts reliably for around 90 minutes (much less than when I first got it).  I'd also add that I've almost never used mine.

    Dell isn't trying to cheat you -- that's just about the best lithium batteries can do right now.  Unless it completely discharges or otherwise fails, it should last past a year (with less run time).  Never completely discharge the battery.

    Most computer makers give a 1 year warranty on batteries -- it's pretty much standard

  • No notebook manufacturer will guarantee a battery for more than 12 months, even if the system warranty is 3 years or more. Not all batteries will last just one year - on average, a lithium battery has a lifespan of about 18 months-2 years before it will no longer hold sufficient charge.

    I've got two 5-year old batteries from an Inspiron 5000e that still work acceptably, but I've seen a lot newer systems with batteries that failed at just over a year - and not just from Dell -- from Apple, Sony, Toshiba, and Gateway. My suspicion is that the newer systems run quite a bit hotter - heat being the #3 killer of lithium batteries (behind deep discharges and aging), which kills the batteries.

    Batteries are considered consumables by ALL notebook manufacturers.
  • If you never use the battery power and never let it run down and recharge, it will actually die faster. Your next battery should be used occasionally until it needs some recharging. It will last much longer. Kind of like muscles--Use it or lose it. You should not leave it plugged in all the time while off, too. Best protection against surges and storms is to unplug it.
  • Li Ion batteries have two quantifying factors for their lifespan. First, they are good for a certain amount of charge/discharge cycles. This varies from battery to battery - check the specs for the machine you want to buy. Secondly, time is an enemy. They only last a certain amount of time, whether or not you use the charge/discharge cycles. You will very likely get way more than a year unless you discharge/charge constantly. Also, some of the low end computers still have NiCad batteries. These are low end, and will not last as long or work as well as the Li Ion batteries. Batteries are a consumable in any manufacturers machine.

    Message Edited by parkerti on 08-20-2005 05:00 PM

    Message Edited by parkerti on 08-20-2005 05:01 PM

  • Unforunately, time kills Lithium(-Ion or -Polymer) Batteries. It is true that older laptop Lithium batteries are in a usable condition even after 5 years, but most newer batteries loose their capacity faster. As already posted, heat lets batteries age faster.Then, todays Lithium batteries have a much higher energy density than older batteries. This is the main cause why they degrade faster; the structures in the battery cell is finer.
    From my experience, a Lithium battery should be usable 2 to 3 years (you will be noticing a significant capacity drop after 2 years). If you have to change it every year, there is something wrong, unless you use the battery very often.
  • I'm having the same issue.
    I have an Inspiron 600m, bought  Sept 2003.  I have changed batteries Last August 2004.
    My current ones are dead again and  look almost one year.  Trust me! It's the quality. Dell has really started using low quality to save US money; problem is, we end up spending more replacing things.
    Things are not what they used to be.
    ps.  I sell computers for a living...:-)
  • Thank you everyone for responding.  I'm glad that I'm not the only one experiencing this and I got some info from y'all that I didn't know.  I will try using my next battery more i guess???  It just seems to me like $130 every year for a battery is ridiculous...but I guess that's just how it is.  I have a 600m by the way.  I still wonder why some people's batteries have lasted 3 yrs when mine barely lasted a year and why i never heard of this before.  Anyway, thanks again
  • I believe it's all in how you take care of the battery.  And a  little about what type of battery you have, some have longer lifespans that others obviously.  I wouldn't consider it completely
    unrealistic needing to replace a battery yearly.  It's normal for their power time to dwindle, to the point that they're essentially useless.
  • Check these guys out...

    The reading sometimes gets a little thick, but this should help maximize everyone's battery.


  • What's the cost of a battery module? I hope the whole module needs replacement
  • Well, for my laptop (6000), it seems to be in the $180 range from Dell.  I would go to eBay and get one there for about half price... has anyone done this, and are those batteries good?  I would recommend one thing - check the production date.  Remember, L-Ion batteries start to die the moment they're made.


  • Batteries don't last long, especially if you use them constantly.  I'm a student, and I bring my Inspiron 1150 to class with me every day.  When i got my laptop 14 months ago, I could get 5 hours on a battery, now I get 1.5 hours.  I went to ebay and bought a battery for $75 brand new (identical one from Dell was $230) and I get 5.5 hours on this battery.  Basically if you want long battery life, you are going to have to replace your battery every few years.  Now, with the two batteries I'm hoping ot get 6-7 hours of battery life.