I have an iPhone 3gs 32gb. As they do, my battery was noticeably depleting as well as conflicted with the device having been slightly water damaged (dropped in quickly but immediately turned off and dried out. Works "fine"). I decided to replace the internal battery with a factory OEM version but even after doing so my battery life is awful. I am talking about losing 10% during one 4 minute phone call or 30% in the first hour or less or simple standby.

Are there things I should look for or perhaps additional parts which could be causing the depletion?

For reference: I charged the phone to 100%, turned the phone off, then 3 days later (with phone off) the battery was completely dead. Something else seems to be constantly running or draining the battery.

  • 2
    OEM replacements are notoriously inferior to the ones Apple supplies. By the sounds of it, you received one in poor quality. No other part could affect battery life in this way.
    – user10355
    Commented Oct 18, 2011 at 22:05
  • @cksum - unless I've been wrong for years, OEM implies it is an Apple original battery (Original Equipment Manufacturer).
    – JM4
    Commented Oct 18, 2011 at 22:06
  • 1
    An OEM part is not the same as an OEM "replacement" just like 100% real fruit juice is not the same as fruit drink. The former is indeed the same part used in the manufactured device. The latter is often used to confuse consumers, selling them inferior parts by cleverly wording the item. That is of course assuming you did receive a genuine OEM part (did you compare the part number and build quality to the original? was it missing any parts, like the connector cable? etc.). Additionally, you don't know who the battery was stored, nor do you have any guarantees it is new (date on item?).
    – user10355
    Commented Oct 18, 2011 at 23:02
  • 2
    You are also dealing with knock-offs (just like those fake LV purses and sun-glasses) galore. The point is, the net is full of fake crap and people looking to swindle you. Did you buy from a reputable place (e.g., iFixit) or some eBay or chinese supplier? But from what you describe, it couldn't be anything other than a bad battery. Like I said, there's no other part in the phone that affects battery life. I would visit an Apple Store and ask them to run diagnostics on the battery. They'll be able to tell you the battery's health at least. Then you'll know definitively.
    – user10355
    Commented Oct 18, 2011 at 23:06
  • @cksum Useful comments - worth posting as an answer, I think. I'd upvote it. :)
    – Dan J
    Commented Jan 11, 2012 at 23:31

3 Answers 3


It is a common issue for an iPhone to have premature battery life draining, I can't speak to the self replacement, but generally the fastest and best course of action is to follow the steps for syncing your information to a personal information management software(address book, ical, etc) and restoring the device as new.

The step by step instructions are listed in: How to back up your data and set up as a new device

Again just to reiterate, you do not want to restore from a backup in iTunes, but restore the device into a factory default state. If it isn't fixed by that, it's likely a permanent hardware problem.

  • thanks for the help. I originally thought malalgned files and document structure from previous backups was causing the conflict. Unfortunately, I have tried this a few times with no luck.
    – JM4
    Commented Oct 18, 2011 at 21:57
  • Double butts. And you are sure it is 100% wiped when you startup the new device? If so you are probably beyond my help, I haven't done physical work in iPhones before. :( Commented Oct 18, 2011 at 23:09

There´s a lot to do when problem is battery not lasting, mostly it´s user´s fault. 5 hints that may double your battery:

  • close all unused app - You hit home, but app is still running! use an app to free mem and close them up, or close 1 by 1, in multitasking bar;

  • set you brightness lower, and smaller time on autolock - Screen leds are one of the items that uses more bat power. with low brightness, lower power consumption;

  • only activate 3g when you´re really using it! The same with WiFi, Bluetooth Etc. Using SBSettings makes it even easier (cydia tweak);

  • why location turned on 24/7? let it on only when you want to use it!

  • full cycle bat once a month - let it drain almost completely, and charge it for at least 8 hours with all apps closed;

  • less notifications, or shut it off - notifications also uses a lot of resources, as run in background most of time.

my iphone4 lasts up to 4 days, so I assure it really makes difference!

  • Just coming around to this answer. Thanks for your suggestions but none of the above were the case. It was primarily from a default OEM battery replacement but in either case using some of the fixes above basically goes against the reason to have an iPhone in the first place. Manually switch on location services every time I want to use an app/take a photo/use a service? no thanks.
    – JM4
    Commented Mar 11, 2013 at 23:05

Here are a few tips:

  1. Turn Off Keyboard Clicks Sound
  2. Disable Background App Refresh
  3. Turn off the Parallax Effect/Animations
  4. Turn off Wifi/Bluetooth/Airdrop
  5. Disable Location Services
  6. Close Running Apps in the Background
  7. Remove the App Garbage Files by CleanMyPhone

Source: http://www.fireebok.com/resource/how-to-improve-battery-life-on-your-iphone.html

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