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Archived - iPod's battery doesn't charge

This article has been archived and is no longer updated by Apple.

iPod's battery doesn't charge

Several things could keep your iPod's battery from charging. The major causes are listed below in logical order. Check each one to see if it's what's keeping your battery from charging.

Low-powered USB port

iPods that connect to USB ports require a high-power USB port. Keyboards and some USB hubs will not charge iPod. Connect iPod directly to the computer or to a USB AC power adapter. Click here for more information.

Connect directly to computer

If you connect iPod to something that connects to the computer (like a USB hub or FireWire drive), connect iPod directly to the USB or FireWire port on the computer.

FireWire port on a Windows PC

The FireWire (IEEE 1394) ports on some Windows-compatible computers may not be powered, and consequently won't charge iPod when you plug it in. Check here to see if the FireWire port on your PC can charge iPod.

Your computer goes to sleep

Your computer can only charge iPod when it's turned on and not asleep. Make sure your computer is on and not set to go to sleep when you want to charge iPod. Tip: Some Macintosh computers can charge iPod even though they're asleep. If your sleeping computer doesn't charge iPod, don't worry, just wake it and let iPod charge.

You are using Windows 2000

If you use your iPod with a computer using Windows 2000, see document 304801 "iPod: Proper charging procedures for Windows 2000" for steps on how to keep iPod charging.

There are too many devices in the FireWire chain

Your computer can provide power to FireWire devices that don't have their own power sources, such as hard drives and cameras. If there are too many of these kinds of devices connected to your computer, iPod may not be recognized.

  1. Disconnect all devices from your computer's FireWire port(s).
  2. Connect iPod to the computer's FireWire port using the FireWire cable that came with iPod.

If this resolves the issue, consider purchasing a powered FireWire hub to connect your nonpowered devices to. These hubs are available from the Apple Store.

iPod is locked up

If iPod is locked up it will not charge, reset iPod. When you reset iPod all your songs and files are saved, but some customized settings may be lost. Tip: iPod will not wake automatically if you connect to a 4-pin FireWire port. Press the Select button (center of wheel) to wake iPod.

Faulty cable

If something is wrong with the FireWire or USB cable that came with iPod, it may not supply any power to charge the battery. Note: Only iPod models with a Click Wheel can get power from a high-powered USB port using the supplied cable (includes iPod mini, iPod (Click Wheel), iPod photo, iPod with color display, iPod nano, and Fifth Generation iPod).

  1. Make sure you are using the cable that came with iPod. Some third-party cables may not work properly with iPod.
  2. Make sure nothing is in or blocking your computer's FireWire or USB ports.
  3. Check the connections to make sure the cable is completely plugged in.
  4. Try another known-good FireWire or USB cable if available.

If this resolves the issue your FireWire or USB cable needs to be replaced. You can arrange for replacement at the iPod Service Website.

Faulty port on the computer

If something is wrong with your computer's FireWire or USB port, it may not supply power to iPod. Note: Only iPod mini can get power from a high-powered USB port using the supplied cable.

  1. Check the connections.
  2. Try another known-good FireWire (or high-powered USB) port on a different computer if available.
  3. If you do not have access to another computer, use the Apple iPod Power Adapter.
  4. Plug in one end of the FireWire cable to the Apple iPod Power Adapter and the other end to your iPod.
  5. Plug the Apple iPod Power Adapter into a working electrical outlet.
  6. If you have an iPod (with Dock Connector) model, connect the FireWire end to the Apple iPod Power Adapter and the dock connector to iPod. Warning: Never plug the dock connector end of the FireWire cable into a computer's FireWire port.

If this resolves the issue, consult your service and support guide to see how you can have the computer's port repaired.

Faulty Apple iPod Power Adapter

If something is wrong with the Apple iPod Power Adapter, it may not supply power to iPod.

  1. Try another known-good electrical outlet.
  2. Make sure all the connections are good. Try disconnecting and reconnecting all connections to make sure they are snug.
  3. Try another Apple iPod Power Adapter if one is available.
  4. Try connecting iPod to a computer's FireWire port using iPod's FireWire cable.

If this resolves the issue the Apple iPod Power Adapter needs to be repaired. You can arrange for repair at the iPod Service Website.

You might consider additional troubleshooting steps for the Apple iPod AC Adapter before having it replaced.

Faulty dock connector or FireWire port on iPod

If something is wrong with iPod's FireWire or Dock Connector port, it may not supply power to iPod.

  1. Make sure nothing is in or blocking iPod's FireWire or Dock Connector port.
  2. Check the connection to make sure the FireWire or Dock Connector cable is completely plugged in.

If this did not resolve the issue iPod needs to be repaired. You can arrange for repair at the iPod Service Website.

Related Terms: charged, dead, die, dying, drained, draining, drain, drains, frozen, freeze, freezes, freezing

Last Modified: Feb 18, 2012
  • Last Modified: Feb 18, 2012
  • Article: TA44551
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