batteries

Tesla Launched the Model 3, Starting at $35,000

Episode 1403

On Friday, Tesla launched its more affordable $35,000 car, the Model 3. The thing that's been keeping these cars so expensive is because of the batteries it requires. Teslas have a long range of 200+ miles, which means it needs bigger batteries. Tesla has put batteries in the chassis for this, which is a good place to put them because it gives the car more stability and keeps it out of the way. The price of these batteries has been dropping considerably, though.

Learn more about the Tesla Model 3 at tesla.com.

Why can't I turn on my MacBook Air?

Episode 1393

Nabeel from Gardendale, AL
MacBook Air

Nabeel has a first generation MacBook Air and he can't turn it on, even when plugged in. Leo says that it's likely that the battery has died and that it blocks the current going to the computer. He can remove the battery and use it as a desktop, but to replace the battery is only about $99. So why not just get more use out of it by replacing it? Apple can do it.

Can I replace the battery in an iPhone?

Episode 1393

Ed from Upland, CA
Apple iPhone 4s

Ed gave a friend his old iPhone and it's stopped working. He suspects it may be the battery. Can he get a replacement? Leo says yes! Apple can replace the battery, and it's about $99. Third party shops could also do it. It requires a good toolset and it will void any warranty the phone has left, though.

Image By Kzar (Own work) [CC BY-SA 4.0], via Wikimedia Commons

Dick DeBartolo, The Giz Wiz

Episode 1388

Dick DeBartolo

If you have a pile of batteries, this gadget from the Giz Wiz is for you. Ohuhu® Battery Storage Case keeps all your spare batteries organized and easy to see. It holds up to 72 batteries with a handy removable battery tester to quickly see if a battery still holds a charge. Hang it on a wall or slide it into a drawer or on a shelf for easy access. It's a nice deal at $10.99 (as of 5/20/17) and Amazon Prime, so free 2-day shipping for Prime Members.

How can find out if my iPhone is part of the battery recall?

Episode 1367

Igor from North Hollywood, CA
Apple iPhones

Igor has been hearing about battery issues on the iPhone. How can he find out if his is part of the recall? Leo says that Apple has a site that he can check here. Chances are, it may not be part of it. In the end, batteries do fail. They wear out after 500 full recharges. Also, he won't want to run them down and then recharge every time. He should plug it in when he's not using it.

Is it harmful to use an external battery with my iPhone?

Episode 1254

Kenny from Temple, TX
Apple iPhone Battery Case

Leo says it isn't harmful at all, and Apple even sells an external battery for the iPhone 6/6s. In general with these charging cases, when you charge the case it will also charge the phone. On the Mophie cases, there's a switch for when you want to switch to the battery. When it comes to Lithium Ion batteries, though, the best thing to do is keep it charging. The battery will last longer if it stays charged vs charging and discharging. It's definitely not good to let it fully drain.

How could I charge my old HTC Resound phone?

Joe from Santa Monica, CA

Episode 1233

Joe's HTC Resound phone is about 5 years old now, and it no longer will charge. He's wondering what he should try next. Leo says he should probably get a new phone at this point. These phones aren't meant to be kept for as long as 5 years. With computers, we expect to keep them 5 years, but with phone manufacturers expect people to upgrade every couple of years. It could just be that the battery has reached it's limit for charge cycles. If he wants to get a new battery, Leo definitely suggests getting the battery from HTC.