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My Macbook Pro lasts me about 1.5 to 2 hours max on a single charge. This feels ridiculously low.

What can I do to increase the battery life on Macbook Pro?

Battery Information:

  Model Information:
  Manufacturer: SMP
  Pack Lot Code:    0000
  PCB Lot Code: 0000
  Firmware Version: 0201
  Hardware Revision:    000a
  Cell Revision:    0157
  Charge Information:
  Charge remaining (mAh):   6079
  Fully charged:    No
  Charging: Yes
  Full charge capacity (mAh):   6930
  Health Information:
  Cycle count:  3
  Condition:    Normal
  Battery Installed:    Yes
  Amperage (mA):    2139
  Voltage (mV): 12492
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Can you post what System Profiler says in the Power section? Specifically, the age and number of cycles your battery has. –  Kyle Cronin Jan 13 '11 at 0:21
    
@Kyle - I am one day old on the Mac. How do I open System Profiler? –  Raj More Jan 13 '11 at 0:44
    
@Raj It's under Applications/Utilities, or you could click the Apple logo in the top left, then "About this Mac", then "More Info" –  Kyle Cronin Jan 13 '11 at 0:47
    
@Kyle, I found it! Question edited to show additional info –  Raj More Jan 13 '11 at 0:53
    
Probably the info in apple.stackexchange.com/questions/3455/… can help you –  Aragorn Jan 13 '11 at 0:55

3 Answers 3

up vote 5 down vote accepted

Make sure there are no processes hogging your CPU (this eats battery).

Open Activity Monitor from /Applications/Utilities.
Set the Show menu at the top right to All Processes
Click the %CPU column head so the triangle faces down.
Which processes are at the top? How much are they using?

This may reveal what's going on.

Also, you can check the health of your battery to make sure it's not a hardware problem.
Download the free coconutBattery app and see what it has to say about your batter's capacity.

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thank you, i was missing the "All Processes" part of viewing activity manager –  dhaval Sep 11 '13 at 12:02

I've just gone through two brand new MacBook Pro Retina 15's, "fresh" from Apple Store, both of which were giving me only 3-4 hours on a fresh charge.

After resetting NVRAM and SMC, I now get 5-6 or more hours.

If you buy a new MacBook -- and are getting less than 5 hours per charge -- try resetting your NVRAM and SMC.

How to Reset NVRAM:

  1. Shut down the computer.
  2. Locate the following keys on your keyboard: COMMAND , OPTION, the letter P, and the letter R.
  3. Turn on the computer
  4. Press and hold the COMMAND - OPTION - P and R keys before the gray screen appears and before you hear any chimes.
  5. Hold the keys down until the computer restarts and you hear the startup sound for the second time.
  6. Release the keys.

Reset SMC:

  1. Shut down the computer.
  2. Plug in the MagSafe power adapter to a power source, connecting it to the Mac if its not already connected.
  3. On the built-in keyboard, press the (left side) Shift-Control-Option keys and the power button at the same time. The OPTION key is also known as ALT.
  4. Count to 5 then release all the keys and the power button at the same time.
  5. Press the power button to turn on the computer.
  6. Note: The LED on the MagSafe power adapter may change states or temporarily turn off when you reset the SMC.

References:

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Use the laptop plugged in as much as possible. Any time you drain the battery at all, and then charge it, the drain + charge is counted towards 'a cycle', where 'a cycle' means the battery has drained, and been charged, 100%.

So if you drain it half way and charge it fully, twice, that counts as 'a cycle'. These batteries will last a certain number of cycles. There are utilities out there that will check your cycle count, I often use one called "Pow!".

Other than that; run as few applications as possible. Turn off any sensors (ambient light sensor, keyboard backlighting, etc). Run the laptop with as dim a setting on the screen as possible.

Also, try to know what's running in the background. If you've got processes you don't need doing stuff, that will drain your battery faster.

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See note 2, in this article: support.apple.com/kb/ht1519. A cycle is a full discharge and recharge of the battery capacity, but you can have recharges in the middle of the cycle. So, it isn't necessary to use the battery to the end every time. But it is good to exercise the battery, so keeping it plugged all the time will diminish its life. –  lpacheco Jan 13 '11 at 0:54
    
@Ipacheco - yes, that is Apple's official stance. In real-world use, though, and as an IT tech, my experience (which may not reflect your experience..) has been that reducing cycle count by leaving it plugged in as much as possible, reduces battery fade over time. With regards to the cycle itself; yes, I know what the definition of a cycle is. I was merely pointing out that a cycle is not necessarily something that happens all at once. You can drain and charge 50% twice (equaling 100%...) and still be reduced one cycle. Doesn't have to be in the same sitting... –  Harv Jan 13 '11 at 1:29

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