New Tools, New Battery! Yay!

I finally found a company (American) who gave me a straight answer on my computer battery compatability. I ordered the battery they were selling, they tossed in the tools and shipped it free.


The Macbook Air 13 Battery

I get the battery today. GREAT response time.

So I power down my computer, then using their tool I unscrew 5 of the 10 screws on the bottom of my computer. On the sixth screw the tool rounded off the splines and was no longer useful to remove or re-install the screws I’ve got neatly sorted on my counter.

$%^#@$%^$@!!!! I hate cheap tools!

This tool is fairly specialized so it’s not like I can run to the local Radio Shack and buy it. The tool they sent is obviously made in China, it’s got the battery company’s logo on it and is made with some kind of metal that I could probably melt with a match.

The Screw


I don’t want to use my computer with half the screws removed, primarily because I started on the end of my machine where the board, network card, and SSD hard drive are mounted.

I didn’t know if the screws I’d removed were intergral to holding those components in place. (Turns out they weren’t but I wasn’t sure.)

The Tool
The Tool

So I grab my iPad and start searching for the tool. Hmm, Frys carries it. My ususal store didn’t have one. I expand the search and am fully prepared to drive to El Segundo or the San Fernando Valley, if necessary. As luck would have it, the Frys in Industry had ONE, only one.

A sonic boom was heard as I left my home. Actually this is neat, it’s the first time I’ve ever had reason to go to this particular Frys.

Some of you may not know this… I love tools, (no, that doesn’t convey it, I’m a tool WHORE.)

I love having the “right tool” for the job. What this means is that I left Frys with more than just the Pentalobe driver I actually needed.

Years ago I had an absolutely awesome tool kit. I lost that kit in a fire and have been slowly rebuilding a new kit with good quality tools.

(I had great quality electronic tools in the kit I lost. I built that kit over about 3 years, by keeping a list of, “Gee it’d be nice to have a blank”.)

My current kit is built much the same way and while not complete yet, has a decent collection of good quality tools in it.

After spending way too much time shopping in the tool aisle I’m on the freeway heading home. 3 hours later I arrive. LA traffic is unbelievable 24/7 nowadays.

With the proper tool in hand, (a nice case hardened steel affair with a comfort grip,) the remaining five screws came right out.

Inside a Macbook Air
Inside a Macbook Air

The bottom of my machine came off, exposing the battery and components of my machine.

Five more screws, this time Torx; one last connector and the old battery was sitting on the counter.

While I had the computer open, I cleaned dust out of the fan, and cleaned the intake vents. A little Preventative Maintenance never hurt anyone!

The new battery was a perfect fit. So again, using my nice new tools I screwed everything back into place.

Now I’m in a twelve hour battery charge cycle, tomorrow I’ll discharge the battery fully and then we’ll see how much longer this new beast will last. The capacity is slightly larger than the original battery. I have no idea how that will affect the run time on my machine.

The old battery had gotten to the point that I was only getting about 1.5 to 2 hours on a charge.

When the machine was new I’d get 6 hours before needing to recharge.

All told, replacing the battery probably cost me almost $200 bucks. (I could have had Apple do it for $129) But I got new tools (Yay!) And when I get ready to upgrade my hard drive it should be a snap!

I’m counting it as a win.