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Okay, so the date on my Powerbook 3400 is occasionally messing up, so I assume the onboard battery (I call it a PRAM battery, but there is likely a more official name for it) is slowly dying. Not too surprising considering its age after all.

So I decide to go to the local Apple dealer and order one in. After phoning one guy several times and playing phone tag with another, I finally got one ordered. Kinda pricey (~$50), but such is the price of old powerbooks I guess.

Now it is in, but now they inform me that they can't sell me the battery alone. I have to bring in my computer and they have to install it (about an hour's worth of labour). Now I work in a business that has 2 computer technicians that keep over 80 Macs and PCs running smoothly and one of them has agreed to install the battery for me. As well, I bought the PB used from my workplace when they were clearing out some old equipment, so they should know what they are doing.

Anyway, maybe it is just my cheap side showing up, but why can't they just sell me the battery? According to them, Apple won't let them do it. Is this true? Why?

Just for interest, the PB3400 actually has a G3 (kanga) motherboard in it, so it isn't technically a 3400 anymore. Would that make a difference to the type of battery it requires?

Any insights would be useful. Thanks.
 

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I have previously purchased a pram battery for an old Powerbook 540c. I think I got it from MacWarehouse a few years ago. I doubt there would be any reason to prevent someone from buying a battery only.

I do know that in some Powerbooks this battery is hard to get at and you could do some serious damage if you screw it up. Maybe the store is afraid to sell you such an expensive battery unless they install it themselves. Expensive battery and dead laptop = very unhappy customer.

Try some of the mail order places in the U.S.

The real question is, why does this battery cost $50? This is pure gouging. These are items that Apple knows will have to be replaced. There is nothing special about them. They are usually just standard button batteries with wire leads.

It's the built in obsolesence mentality. Make that battery so expensive that it doesn't make any sense to replace it. Throw the computer away and buy a new one. So much for Apple customer service. The Apple iPods are another famous example of this battery scam.

This must be rant day at ehMac!! Macspectrum has a good one going too. I love this stuff and I hate listening to the Apple apologists. Apple will only get better if we shame them into it.
 

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if the unit is no longer covered by warranty the dealer is "mistaken" for you telling they "have" to install it
note - "mistaken" is a more legally accepted euphamism for another word which could get me into legal trouble
yeah, same old pee pee ka ka

it is a personal pet peeve of mine to be lied to

[ December 16, 2003, 06:47 PM: Message edited by: MACSPECTRUM ]
 

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Somewhere in a box I have a new PRAM battery for a 3400. I'm pretty sure its the same as one would use for a Kanga motherboard.

It can be yours for postage if:

1. I can find it...

2. It will work for you...

3. You can return the one you bought for a
refund.

Let me know in a pm.
 
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