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Archived - iPod battery frequently asked questions (FAQ)

This article has been archived and is no longer updated by Apple.

Read below answers to the most frequently asked questions about iPod's battery. For additional information, see the Apple Batteries website.

Questions answered in this document:
  1. What kind of battery does iPod have?
  2. How long does the battery last?
  3. How long does it take to charge the battery?
  4. How do I charge my iPod's battery?
  5. Do I need to "prime" my iPod's battery by letting it charge for 24 hours before I use it the first time?
  6. Do I need to completely empty the battery before charging it, and does doing this prevent the so-called "memory effect"?
  7. Should I leave iPod connected to the charger or in the dock whenever I'm not using it?
  8. Is it better to empty the battery before charging it, or can I charge it whenever it's convenient?
  9. Can I charge the battery when traveling abroad?
  10. How long can iPod's battery keep a charge without being used?
  11. Why does iPod stop playing even though the battery indicator says there's power left?
  12. How can I tell if my iPod's battery is working correctly?
  13. Why doesn't my iPod's battery last as long as it should?
  14. Does the battery ever wear out?
  15. What is a "charge cycle"?
  16. Can I get the battery replaced?

  1. Question: What kind of battery does iPod have?
    Answer: iPod and iPod mini have built-in, rechargeable lithium-ion batteries. For more information about this battery technology, see the Apple Batteries website.

  2. Question: How long does the battery last?
    Answer: When new and fully charged, the battery provides up to 8 or 12 hours of battery life, depending on your model. For additional information see "Tips and tricks to get the most out of your iPod's battery".

  3. Question: How long does it take to charge the battery?
    Answer: Fully charging the battery takes about 4 hours. You can also fast-charge the battery to 80 percent capacity in 1 hour (2 hours for iPod (Click Wheel)). Charging the battery may take longer if you're using iPod as it charges.

  4. Question: How do I charge my iPod's battery?
    Answer: The easiest way is to connect it to the Apple iPod Power Adapter. You can also charge it by connecting iPod to your computer or putting it in its optional dock. For additional information, see "Charging iPod's internal battery"

  5. Question: Do I need to "prime" my iPod's battery by letting it charge for 24 hours before I use it the first time?
    Answer: No. Just charge the battery until the indicator says the battery is full.

  6. Question: Do I need to completely empty the battery before charging it, and does doing this prevent the so-called "memory effect"?
    Answer: You don't need to empty the battery before charging it. Lithium-based batteries, like those used in iPod, have none of the memory effects seen in nickel-based rechargeable batteries.

  7. Question: Should I leave iPod connected to the charger or in the dock whenever I'm not using it?
    Answer: The battery stops charging when it's full. Leaving it connected won't charge it any more. It's perfectly OK to leave it connected so it can charge overnight, for example.

  8. Question: Is it better to empty the battery before charging it, or can I charge it whenever it's convenient?
    Answer: You can charge iPod's battery whenever it's convenient.

  9. Question: Can I charge the battery when traveling abroad?
    Answer: Absolutely. The Apple iPod Power Adapter can accommodate the common electrical standards used throughout the world. To make it easy, consider purchasing the World Travel Adapter Kit so you'll always have the right set of plugs for the many outlets you're bound to encounter. The kit also works with most iBook and PowerBook G4 power adapters.

  10. Question: How long can iPod's battery keep a charge without being used?
    Answer: The standby time is 1 month when fully charged. After a month of not being used, the battery will likely be fully discharged. You may find that the battery is empty before then, and that's normal. Even when it's not being used, iPod uses a small amount of battery power.

    Lithium-ion batteries need to be used for maximum performance. If you don't use your device often, be sure to complete a charge cycle at least once per month.

  11. Question: Why does iPod stop playing even though the battery indicator says there's power left?
    Answer: The battery indicator is only an approximation of the amount of power that's left. For more information, see "iPod's battery indicator is approximate".

  12. Question: How can I tell if my iPod's battery is working correctly?
    Answer: You can perform a simple test to tell if your battery is working properly. Follow the steps in "iPod's battery indicator is approximate".

  13. Question: Why doesn't my iPod's battery last as long as it should?
    Answer: See "Tips and tricks to get the most out of your iPod's battery" for information on how to extend your battery life.

  14. Question: Does the battery ever wear out?
    Answer: Rechargeable batteries have a limited number of charge cycles and may eventually need to be replaced. Battery life and number of charge cycles vary by use and settings. As with other rechargeable batteries, you may eventually need to replace your battery.

  15. Question: What is a "charge cycle"?
    Answer: Lithium-ion batteries can be charged a finite number of times, as defined by charge cycle. A charge cycle means using all of the battery's power, but that doesn't necessarily mean a single charge. For instance, you could listen to your iPod for a few hours one day, using half its power, and then recharge it fully. If you did the same thing the next day, it would count as one charge cycle, not two, so you may take several days to complete a cycle. Each time you complete a charge cycle, it diminishes battery capacity slightly, but you can put your iPod's battery through many charge cycles before it will only hold 80 percent of its original battery capacity.

  16. Question: Can I get the battery replaced?
    Answer: Yes. All models of iPod are covered by the Out of Warranty Battery Program. See the iPod battery service FAQ.

If you think you need iPod service for something other than the battery, click here.

Last Modified: Feb 20, 2012
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  • Last Modified: Feb 20, 2012
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