Take the 2-minute tour ×
Super User is a question and answer site for computer enthusiasts and power users. It's 100% free, no registration required.

I have received a new laptop battery as my old one became useless. In the instructions provided by the shop I got the battery from (not from the instructions provided by the battery manufacturers), they have said that before using the battery for normal use, make sure to discharge the battery fully, then recharge it full. Do these 2 steps 5 times to get the best out of the battery.

Is this true, or is the shop keeper just trying to reduce the life of the battery so I buy another one from him sooner rather than later?

share|improve this question

1 Answer 1

up vote 4 down vote accepted

Almost all batteries used in laptops these days have an internal sensor keeping track of the charge level that's designed to keep you from overcharging or undercharging them (which can cause damage). This procedure of doing a full discharge and recharge usually helps to recalibrate the gauge, which depending on the battery may or may not be so accurate out of the box. Many laptops include a utility that will do this for you (force the machine to run on battery even while plugged in until empty, and then recharge) just for this reason, and in fact it can be a good way to get more life out of an older battery that the gauge may have gotten miscalibrated on.

Doing it five times is overkill, though, and I think once should be sufficient (unless it's an incredibly lousy gauge). The battery should be good for hundreds of cycles, so it's not going to dramatically reduce the life, it's just pointless effort.

share|improve this answer

Your Answer

 
discard

By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.