Battery is "not available" suddenly, often can only restart with a SMC

Hi everyone,

I was hoping someone could give me some advice on my problem as I've read every message and am stuck. For completion sake I'll list the symptoms as I noticed them:

  1. Recently I noticed my battery status said 'not charging' when on charge
  2. Late this week I noticed that my magsafe charge light was a very dim, hardly noticeable green when charging. Then suddenly the battery status changed to 'not charging' even though I didn't need to have the magsafe charger plugged in to run the MBP
  3. On Friday the MPB simply wouldn't start, nothing would get it running, the magsafe charge had no light indicators at all. Pressing the battery indicator button I got one flashing button on the left
  4. This morning I've been finding with it, tried SMC, PRAM, opened the macbook to try remove battery but this wasn't possible as I don't have the special screw driver. I put it all back together
  5. In desperation I tied SMC once more but this time held it for over 50 seconds and then suddenly my MBP booted (with magsafe charge plugged in). The fan is very noisy but everything starts. Initially the batter said 'not charging' but then after a short while it now has 'X' displayed. On looking at the profile of the Power I get the stats at the bottom of this message.
  6. Magsafe never shows a light
  7. Magsafe works properly as I tested with another identical version and get the same results
  8. Pressing the battery indicator button shows no lights at all
  9. I can restart my MBP if I keep the magsafe plugged in.
  10. If I remove the magsafe the only way I can restart my MBP is if I reset the SMC again.
  11. It's interesting to note that my 'About this Mac' message doesn't show a serial number. I simply get: "Serial Number System Serial#" and in Hardware tab I get "Not Available"
  12. To add one more relevant bit of info, about 14 months ago I had my MBP repaired by Apple in the UK. Wine had been spilt on it and it caused major damage, I ended up paying around £500 for repairs, I'm 80% sure it was a logic board replacement. This might be relevant, but I hope it means it isn't the logic board.

I'm very stuck now and living in South Africa it's not possible to take it to a mac store as ours are premium resellers, they don't have Genius bars. I would really need to send it in to someone and get ripped off.

I am inclined to believe this is a batter problem however I am cautious to buy a new battery when it could be a more fundamental problem, like with the logic board. Is there anyway I can test this?

Please let me know if I can provide any additional information.

Battery Information:

Charge Information:

Charge Remaining (mAh): 0

Fully Charged: No

Charging: No

Full Charge Capacity (mAh): 0

Health Information:

Cycle Count: 0

Battery Installed: No

Amperage (mA): 0

Voltage (mV): 0

System Power Settings:

AC Power:

System Sleep Timer (Minutes): 60

Disk Sleep Timer (Minutes): 0

Display Sleep Timer (Minutes): 10

Wake on AC Change: No

Wake on Clamshell Open: Yes

Wake on LAN: Yes

Current Power Source: Yes

Display Sleep Uses Dim: Yes

PrioritizeNetworkReachabilityOverSleep: 0

RestartAfterKernelPanic: 157680000

Battery Power:

System Sleep Timer (Minutes): 10

Disk Sleep Timer (Minutes): 10

Display Sleep Timer (Minutes): 5

Wake on AC Change: No

Wake on Clamshell Open: Yes

Display Sleep Uses Dim: Yes

Reduce Brightness: Yes

RestartAfterKernelPanic: 157680000

Hardware Configuration:

UPS Installed: No

AC Charger Information:

Connected: Yes

Charging: No

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Thanks to both who added comments and sorry for not responding in a few days. Since posting this have got worse, to the point it doesn't now turn on most of the times, only very rarely can I get it on.

I tried the hardware disc but my mac wasn't able to accept discs. You would push it in an nothing would happen, no 'acceptance'. I tried to start up in the diagnostics mode but couldn't get in for some reason, it's as if it was disabled.

For weather question: we do live near the coast, but it's winter and so all doors are closed, no humidity so really no reason for this to happen now. I've tried cleaning parts and simply have no luck.

It's like it's simply failed but with a few error indicators pointing in different directions.

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Jason - Sorry to hear its getting worse. Not much more we can offer here. Sounds like your going need that friend going north or you'll need to buy a new system (Ouch!)

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2 Answers

Chosen Solution

I would first check to see if you have something stopping the Magsafe power cord connector to fully seat into the system. You may want to use a damp Cotton Swab using isopropyl alcohol to clean the plastic recess and the contacts on both sides.

You may have another part that was damaged by the wine that is now failing. What is odd here is your symptoms point to both a power/battery issue and a main logic bd issue.

Are you is a humid/wet area or traveled to such an area. Sometimes the old spillage gets re-hydraded so the acids in the wine start up again causing corrosion or oxide build ups that cause a short across a component or two.

Without close inspection it will be hard to tell if the logic bd. is OK or not.

For now focus on the power system, can you get it work after cleaning the contacts? Once you can get the system to be stably powered you can run Apple diags to see what it points to Apple Diags Good Luck

You may not have a choice here, Do you have a friend going the Europe that could carry your system to an Apple store for repairs?

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Run your Hardware diagnostic disk.

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Yea - seems like you have logic board, maybe power ciruit failure. At this point with it not working if a reliable electronics shop (or your self if you feel comfortable) might need to clean and examine the DC-in and battery connector board under a magnifier for shorted components. BTW replacing components is a very advanced DIY - desoldering and re-soldering logic board components requires lots of skill, special irons and solder. -- good luck.

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Jason will be eternally grateful.
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