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What is a battery cycle- Introduction, Mac Book, and Cycle Life Counting
In Today’s technological era, most of our electronic devices and vehicles depend on a battery to function fully. Most people assume that as long as they have charged their battery after a low battery warning, they are good to go. They do not consider battery charge cycles or life cycles. So, it always comes as a shock when your battery underperforms or discharges faster after a certain duration of time. Most people will start questioning the battery's quality and originality, forgetting that it has used up all its cycles. It should not be the case. Your battery may still look new but still fail to hold a charge. Your battery life is usually measured in the number of cycles and not how long it has been used or how it looks.
Note that any person’s battery that has reached its maximum number of cycles calls for a replacement to avoid inconveniences of abrupt dead batteries and devices.
The article below will discuss what a battery cycle is, what the Mac Book battery cycle is, and ways of counting battery cycle life.
Let’s get started.
What is the battery cycle?
The term battery cycle is used to refer to the battery's expected life of the operation. When we talk about battery cycle, we mean the number of complete charges or discharge cycles that your rechargeable battery can support before the charging capacity falls under 80% of its original charging capacity. For example, a lithium-ion battery may have a cycle from 500 to 5000, while an AGM battery has about 300 to 700 cycles. It is important to note that each battery is affected differently by charge cycles.
According to Apple Inc, a charge cycle means using all the battery's capacity but not necessarily by discharging it from 100% to 0%. In short, a complete charge cycle is measured when you discharge an amount that equals 100% of your battery's capacity. For example, with a fully charged battery, you end up using 80% of it before recharging your battery. The next day you use 20% of your charged battery. Therefore, it will sum up to 100% discharged, indicating a completed one-charge cycle.
A battery cycle life depends on the condition of your battery. Factors such as high or low temperatures will affect the battery cycle and its performance, shelf life, and voltage control. Frequency of use also affects the cycle life of a battery, whereby the harder your battery works, the sooner it will fail (it is due to a higher capacity withdrawn from the battery). For example, 100% drawn power from a Gel battery gives it a typical life cycle of 450, while an AGM battery is 200. A 10% capacity withdrawal for a Gel battery leaves about 5700 life cycles, while an AGM battery is about 3200. Note that such a difference occurs due to their different brands.
What is the battery cycle on Mac Book?
Every electronic device battery discharges while in use and charges when connected to a charging power source. Such a case is the same when it comes to Mac Book batteries. When using a Mac Book, its battery goes through a charge cycle. A Mac Book cycle refers to the period over which the battery is charged and discharged again. These cycles determine the health state and longevity of your battery. Therefore, in Mac Book, we measure one battery cycle count as 100% discharge of the battery. The discharge can either be in a single charge or multiple battery charges.
Currently, the battery in a new Mac Book is rated to approximately 1000 cycles. But that cycle seems small. What if I need to reset the cycle count? Is it possible? These are some of the concerns people have when buying a Mac Book. The 1000 cycles may seem small, which is not the case as these cycles can be equated to 5 years at most before you reach the limit. It takes this long as Mac Books use Lithium-ion batteries known to charge faster, hold power for long, and have a long life cycle. Furthermore, you cannot reset the battery cycle count in your Mac after reaching the maximum limit as the cycle logs are inside the battery. The only way to increase the cycle is by replacing the battery.
Please note that it is highly recommended for any Mac user to keep track of their device's battery cycle and replace it once it reaches its maximum limit. Even though you can still use the battery after it has reached its full cycle count, it is not advisable as continuous drops in battery backups may affect other hardware parts of your Mac in the long run.
How do you count battery cycle life?
It is possible for a person who uses a battery to check the battery cycle life in their device. Generally, the battery count cycle is measured and calculated based on the current rating in Milliampere (mA) and the battery's capacity in Milliampere Hours (mAh). But when talking about the battery count cycle of a Lithium-ion, we mean the number of times the battery discharges and charges before it comes down to 80% of its initial capacity.
We count the battery cycle life by looking at its charge cycle. A full charge cycle occurs at 100% of a complete discharge. As stated above, on day one of a fully charged battery, you might use up to 80% of the charge before fully charging your battery. On day two, you end up using 20% of the total charge. Both the two days' charges equate to a sum of 100%, which represents a one charge cycle. And not two cycles. In short, we count battery cycle life when a single charge cycle happens, but that doesn't necessarily mean a single charge as it can be two or multiple charges.
A battery that has reached its maximum cycle count will experience an overall decreased battery life and performance. To avoid reaching such a situation, a user can check how many charge cycles the battery has and how many are left. To check the count on windows, here's what to do;
?Right-click on the start button and select the command prompt.
?Type this command and hit Enter. powercfg /batteryreport
?Next, head to your computer user folder and look for battery-report.html at this location.
?Double-click on this file to open a default browser. Here, look at the Installed batteries section to see the Design Capacity and the Full Charge Capacity.
I hope you have a very clear picture of what a battery cycle is and how to count the cycle life of your battery from the article above. We have also shown you steps to take when checking the cycle count of your laptop's battery. Despite all this information, do not fret a lot about battery cycle lives. Batteries can still be replaced, and you will always get to use your laptop.