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Buying a Replacement Battery for Your Laptop

6 of 9 in Series: The Essentials of Buying a Laptop and Accessories

When you buy a replacement battery for your laptop, you need to consider several factors, including price, warranty, compatibility, and capacity.

  • Compare price range and warranty details. Prices for laptop batteries usually range from $50 to $150. Start with your laptop manufacturer’s Web site or telephone sales department. Get a price for a replacement, and make sure you find all the warranty details.

  • Check the Internet for third-party battery suppliers. You may find the identical name-brand battery for less. And you may also be offered Brand X replacements at a significantly lower price; some of the third-party batteries even promise to hold a larger charge. However, pay close attention to the warranty; what happens in the one-in-a-million-or-so situation where a battery overheats or otherwise damages your laptop?

  • Meet the specifications. You can’t squeeze a 3-inch battery made for a Dell laptop into the 2-inch slot on a Toshiba. It’s physically impossible, and even if you could squeeze it in, the electrical connectors probably wouldn’t line up.

  • Match the voltage. If your original battery was rated at 14.8 volts, that’s the ticket for the replacement model. Don’t go over or under the specified power.

  • Consider going high capacity. Within the manufacturer’s specifications, you may be able to replace your original battery with one with a higher watt-hour or amp hour rating. This allows you to work longer.

  • Get fresh. You’ve no good reason to buy a used battery (or an unused model that has been collecting dust on a shelf somewhere). Check the date of manufacture; anything older than about 18 months should be suspect.

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