17-inch MacBook Pro Battery Expansion (literally)

We’ll it seems my 9-month old MacBook Pro battery has suffered a fate similar to that of others.

About two weeks ago I noticed it randomly shutting of after a few minutes on battery power (not shutting down but rather completely losing power as if the battery died). This situation was rather scary as I’m currently working on my second book and a computer that loses power without notice isn’t a good thing while writing.

The battery indicator in the title bar read fully charged and the little green lights on the battery also indicated fully charged. iStat Pro indicated about 85 charge cycles and a battery health of 95%. This was strange. After a power failure, the battery indicated it was totally dead until it began to charge at which point it was full again. After trying this a few times, iStat Pro indicated a battery health of 3% – not good.

I searched the web for similar problems and began to fear the worst or at least I thought I would have to purchase a new battery. It seems there is a recall for batteries but it wasn’t for the 17-inch model that I have. First however I though I’d try 1-800-SOS-APPL – and it worked!

After briefly describing my problem, the Apple service rep – no questions asked – politely offered to send me a new battery at no charge! Sweet! I now have a new battery but while waiting for it to arrive I had left the bad battery in my MacBook to fill the gaping hole in the bottom. After only a day, I noticed that it wasn’t sitting quite so level on the desk and flipping it over revealed the problem:

still charged?

still charged?

still charged?

still charged?

It’s only grown bigger in the last few day. The funny part is the lights still indicate it’s charged! I guess It’s time to ship it back.

Defective products are never fun but congrats to Apple on not hassling me. I’ve only had a few issues with Apple products over the years and every time it’s been dealt with fairly and quickly.