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All About Laptop Batteries
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Home | Laptop Support | All About Laptop Batteries

All About Laptop Batteries

Thinkpad Supplement

Common Battery Questions???

Q: Why don't some notebooks charge the battery while the unit is on? 

A: Some laptops have this "feature" was taken out as it can cause memory effect on batteries. It is always best for the unit to be off in order for the battery to be charged fully.

Q: When my computer runs from battery it starts beeping after 10-15 min ?

A: Condition your battery by following these steps:

1. Plug your AC adapter in, and power on your system. Go to the CMOS setup by doing hitting the F1 key. Remove the AC adapter and let it discharge here. ***IMPORTANT: DO NOT CHANGE ANY SETTINGS WHILE IN THE CMOS. IF YOU DO YOUR COMPUTER MAY NOT FUNCTION PROPERLY AFTER THAT! ***

2. Your battery icon will start to blink when the % gets low. Hit ESC or the FN or Alt or Ctrl keys. Try to get the battery to the lowest possible it will go. Once this is done, then power off your computer.

3. Plug the AC adapter in and let the system charge the battery. The charge should take any where from one to two hours. Once the charge light goes off then remove the AC adapter and power on your unit. Go into the CMOS settings as in step 1 and verify the charge % on the battery is 100% or close to it. If it is not then exit out and power off your system and plug your AC adapter back in and let it charge further taking note how long the charge light remains on.

4. After doing all of this please power on your unit and re-verify your %. You battery should be charged and you should get one hour of time from the battery.

Q: How to condition the battery to get a better charge.

A: Please do the followings:

Full charge the battery.

Power on the system.

Go into the CMOS setup by hitting "F1" on power up.

Run the battery down while staying in the setup screen until the unit completely dies.

Repeat the process at least 3 times, to get better battery performance.


Q: My battery does not seem to be charging. How long does it to take to charge my battery?

A: Normally it takes two hours to charge the battery if you are not operating the system. If the battery does not seem to be charging, cycle the battery. In other words, discharge then recharge it. The 700 Series battery can be charged in either media bay. Try both bays. If the charging function stops, which is indicated by the battery icon on the status panel, and the battery has still not fully charged, unplug the AC-adapter then reconnect it. If it still does not charge, you may need a new battery, as the old one may be shot.

Q: Does my notebook accept Lithium or NiMH batteries?

A: It depends on the model. Newer systems will accept Lithium Ion batteries. Earlier models use Nickel Metal Hydride type batteries.

Q: How long does the battery last, is there a lithium battery available? (Any notebook)

A: Battery run time will vary depending on usage. A typical high-drain usage is when the CD-ROM and hard drives are being accessed. Check your User's Manual for tips on improving battery run-times, but common is 2-3 hours.

Short Battery Life and Memory Effect

After being fully charged, the main system battery will only last for 10-20 minutes.

Battery will not charge at all

  • Suggestion: Allow the battery to completely discharge and then charge the battery until the charger indicates that a full charge has been reached. Repeat this process three times and see if the battery functions normally. Replace the battery due to memory effect.
  • Technical Tip: Compaq Computer Corporation uses the latest in battery technology to provide our customers with a dependable and stable power source. There are several factors that affect how long a battery will last for any particular user. This technical tip will cover what those factors are and will hopefully provide you with enough information so that you can customize your settings to find the combination that works best for you.


  • Battery Life: The amount of time a battery will supply power starting from a full charge and can range from 30 minutes to over 7 hours. The amount of time that a battery can used until it will no longer take a charge, usually 2-5 years or more.
  • Short Battery Life: A condition that occurs either as an inherent defect or through improper maintenance of rechargeable batteries where battery life is greatly reduced.
  • Memory Effect: A condition that occurs when a battery is charged to the same level several times consecutively. The battery develops a chemical "memory" of that level and will not allow a charging past that point.
  • Power Conservation: Measures taken by computer users to maximize the battery life of there systems. This is done through the use of power conservation utilities and regular battery maintenance.
  • Deep-Cycle Discharge: A process by which a rechargeable battery is totally discharged and then charged to its fullest capacity.

BATTERY Deep-Cycle Discharge

Batteries should be periodically (once or twice a month) deep-cycle discharged. This is one of the most effective means for prolonging battery life. The factors that most affect battery life are : Display brightness/contrast settings Hard drive activity Internal and External options ( PCMCIA cards, etc. ) Power Conservation settings. There is no magic combination of Power Conservation settings and battery maintenance procedures that works best for all situations. Power Conservation settings are very personalized and the values used depends greatly on the type of work being done. The best way to find out what settings work best for you is to experiment with the available options and regular battery maintenance.

Battery Step Charge (Alternate Method to Condition your battery):

1. Unplug the computer from the AC adapter and turn it on. Let the computer run under battery power until the computer turns off, indicating that the battery is fully discharged. (Tip: You may want to “temporarily” change your power settings to allow the system to remain on longer to discharge the battery faster. Remember to adjust them back afterwards.)
2. Remove the battery pack.
3. Using a soft cloth, wipe off the battery packs connectors and the AC adapters connectors.
4. Re-insert the battery pack.
5. Plug the computer into the AC adapter and check the wall outlet, making sure the connection is firm.
6. With the PC turned off, let the battery charge until the battery status light or icon glows green.
7. Unplug the AC adapter.
8. Remove the battery.
9. Wait 30 seconds and re-insert the battery.
10. Plug the AC adapter back in.
11. Let the battery recharge until the battery status light turns green or the icon displays 100%.
12. Now your battery should be fully charged. Unplug the computer from the AC wall outlet and turn on the
PC. You should notice longer battery life and stronger bootup.
13. All batteries hold less charge as they age. Over time, if you attempt to charge a battery and the battery
indicator does not show a full charge, you may need to purchase a new battery.



Ballas Associates, Inc.
To contact us:
Phone: (203) 792-2300
Fax: (203) 312-0151

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