Forum Thread

Dell Latitude 3340 Battery Life

pamplemousse 53 14 January 10, 2016 at 05:51 PM
I recently bought this laptop from the Dell Factory Outlet, it was certified refurbished.

I get around 6-8 hours of battery life that I tested by having a 10 hour youtube video playing in the background and sometimes doing some light browsing and stuff alongside it.

Mine came with the 6 cell battery, 128gb ssd, touch screen, and its advertised battery life is like 13 hours. I don't know if the battery barely serving half its expected life should be a reason to return it... since that was literally the main reason I purchased the model, an "educational" laptop for school.

So I was wondering what kind of battery life other owners experience. This was my first time purchasing a refurbished laptop so I'm not sure if that's normal. I'm kind of bummed because everything else seems fine, no scratches or dents, just a disappointing battery life.

20 Comments

1 2

Sign up for a Slickdeals account to remove this ad.

Joined Aug 2005
L10: Grand Master
12,661 Posts
4,824 Reputation
Pro
#2
Dell refurbished machines direct from Dell have a very good reputation. I would not be worried the machine is defective because of this. The refurbished machines are often orders that are customized and then the order is canceled or an order that's shipped out and then returned unopened. Yes there are traditional returns in there too but they are more rare. They are thoroughly tested (probably more so than new) and then sold at a discount.

Without the full specs of the machine you bought it's hard to say but I would say your battery life is average ish. Playing video isnt usually a low power thing. You also would have had the wifi card working hard etc. The way battery life calculated isn't usually very real world.
Reply Helpful Comment? 0 0
Vague questions receive vague answers . . . . . .
Joined Jun 2005
Let Sleeping Dogs Lie
5,847 Posts
2,388 Reputation
#3
battery test is at 50% brightness, I would contact Dell right away and see if it is bad battery warranty is usually pretty short so if by chance you got a bad one you want to get a call into them right away.
Does you battery report how much is left by % or by time?

It's worth noting that the Latitude 13 was tested at 100 nits, which translates to 52 percent of its full brightness. We tested the VivoBook, Satellite and Yoga at 40 percent of each device's max brightness using our old battery test - See more at: http://www.laptopmag.com/reviews/...WuFaz.dpuf
Reply Helpful Comment? 0 0
Joined Sep 2015
L2: Beginner
53 Posts
14 Reputation
Original Poster
#4
Quote from LiquidRetro View Post :
Dell refurbished machines direct from Dell have a very good reputation. I would not be worried the machine is defective because of this. The refurbished machines are often orders that are customized and then the order is canceled or an order that's shipped out and then returned unopened. Yes there are traditional returns in there too but they are more rare. They are thoroughly tested (probably more so than new) and then sold at a discount.

Without the full specs of the machine you bought it's hard to say but I would say your battery life is average ish. Playing video isnt usually a low power thing. You also would have had the wifi card working hard etc. The way battery life calculated isn't usually very real world.
Specs:
- Processor: Intel Core 4th Generation i5-4210U Processor (1.7GHz, 3M cache)
- Windows 8.1 Pro (Free Upgrade to Windows 10 Pro)
- 128 GB Solid State Drive
- 4GB DDR3L at 1600MHz (I'll be upgrading to 8gb if I keep it)
- 13.3 Inch HD (1366x768) LED-backlit Touch LCD Panel
- Intel HD Graphics


Ugh, I just needed a strong battery life. One can surely assume they're advertising 13 hours of battery life while doing light documents and browsing since the series is called "educational". Even a solid 10 hours would've been sufficient Frown Er I've tried using an automatic webpage refresher for every 30 secs. The battery gets used up faster. I only have like 2 more weeks to mess around with it.
Reply Helpful Comment? 0 0
Joined Sep 2015
L2: Beginner
53 Posts
14 Reputation
Original Poster
#5
Quote from komondor View Post :
battery test is at 50% brightness, I would contact Dell right away and see if it is bad battery warranty is usually pretty short so if by chance you got a bad one you want to get a call into them right away.
Does you battery report how much is left by % or by time?

It's worth noting that the Latitude 13 was tested at 100 nits, which translates to 52 percent of its full brightness. We tested the VivoBook, Satellite and Yoga at 40 percent of each device's max brightness using our old battery test - See more at: http://www.laptopmag.com/reviews/...WuFaz.dpuf
Yes it reports by both time and percentage. The crazy 12 or 13+ hour time expectations in the beginning feel great until they're no where near lived around it. I calibrated the battery twice by fully draining it since it apparently helps with more accurate reads. It's a headache finding an article with the best battery maintenance and extended life technique. For instance, is it healthier to wait until there's 10% battery life (says over 1 hour remaining) left before charging the laptop? Or at 30% (says like over 2 hours remaining)?

Hmm I may have tested it around 60 brightness but thank you for that note. Ugh like I mentioned above, the automated page refresher just decreased my battery life. So I find it crazy they managed to squeeze out 13 hours from web surfing alone. I'll definitely be contacting Dell. Hopefully their replacement batteries aren't worse, I always have a fear of getting something worse and having to deal with multiple replacements when the end result ends up being insignificantly better than the original.

I also noticed the McAfee virus protector it came with was junk and used a lot of CPU so I uninstalled it and got like a solid one or two hour of battery life increase.

Also are 128gb ssds supposed to come with only 83gb usable space left? Kind of annoying but not a big deal if that's normal. I only see like 83gb free out of 108gb.
Reply Helpful Comment? 0 0
#6
You can run a battery report for your latop (Win8+) by running from a admin command line: powercfg /batteryreport - then open the created battery_report.html

This also has some good info: How to Improve Battery Life with Windows 10's New Power Settings [howtogeek.com]
Reply Helpful Comment? 1 0
Joined Dec 2008
L10: Grand Master
6,316 Posts
1,470 Reputation
#7
Quote from boboli View Post :
You can run a battery report for your latop (Win8+) by running from a admin command line: powercfg /batteryreport - then open the created battery_report.html

This also has some good info: How to Improve Battery Life with Windows 10's New Power Settings [howtogeek.com]
Thanks for that report command. Pretty cool, I never new this.
Reply Helpful Comment? 1 0
#8
Quote from PiratePenguin View Post :
Thanks for that report command. Pretty cool, I never new this.
On windows 7 it's powercfg -energy but it includes a lot of info other than the battery stats
Quote from pamplemousse View Post :
Also are 128gb ssds supposed to come with only 83gb usable space left? Kind of annoying but not a big deal if that's normal. I only see like 83gb free out of 108gb.
You loose some space for installed software/windows, page file, hibernation file, possibly a recovery partition, and a little to the file system, so that sounds verry reasonable. Windows 8 is taking up 22gb on my computer right now.

There are lots of thing that effect battery life, but generally the mfg's inflate the battery life estimates as much as possible eg. turned on, display minimal brightness or not on 100% of the time, wifi & Bluetooth off, and doing nothing but stare at your desktop.

Batteries have a certain capacity measured in watt-hours. A 60wh battery would power a computer that draws 10w for 6 hours. Your power consumption varies a lot. Over time the battery's capacity is diminished. The battery report or energy report will contain information on the design capacity and the last charge.

On a windows 7 machine you'd see something like this in the battery section of the report:
Design Capacity: 62100
Last Full Charge: 48320
Which would mean the battery has 77% of it's original capacity (sometimes referred to as the wear level). The total number of charge cycles is also relevant.
Another tool that can display this info is NirSoft's Battery Info view: http://nirsoft.net/utils/battery_..._view.html

If your battery is less than 90% of it's design capacity you might want to return it. I think it's simply a matter of your expectations and an inflated run time estimate. Some of your better review sites will include actual real world battery run times.

You should experiment with power management stettings and profiles, they can have a big impact.
Reply Helpful Comment? 1 0
Last edited by jkee January 11, 2016 at 07:18 PM

Sign up for a Slickdeals account to remove this ad.

#9
I would recommend that you run the Dell Diagnostics Tool [dell.com] 1/2 way down the page.

The 3340 is a highly rated laptop for educational users; [Good Choice, grats].

Back in the day the company I worked for allowed me to choose which computer manufacturer to buy from. For various reasons I decided that I liked Dell more than HP etc.

The refurbished laptops in those days came with a new battery. Dell preferred to avoid support issues regarding batteries, I would think that this is still to policy today but you could call and a
Reply Helpful Comment? 1 0
Earth 1st! We'll mine the other planets later. Biker

Did you know?

If it can't be grown its gotta be mined
EEK!

The best meal I ever ate was Spotted Owl fried in Exxon Oil! Yumshake head

Expand your horizons. Explore something new. Get a RasberryPi and learn something.
Joined Sep 2015
L2: Beginner
53 Posts
14 Reputation
Original Poster
#10
@boboli Thank you so much for introducing that command and providing that article!

@jkee Looks like I'm at 93%. So I guess replacing it wouldn't do me any better. Tbh I'm not sure how accurate it is. I did the command on my Windows 7 3-year-old HP laptop's battery which has problems of shutting off when the battery's down to 50%, the results said its last charge capacity was equivalent to its design capacity -__-

Here's my Dell's:




Oh gosh, why is its last full charge capacity decreasing (I got the laptop on January 6). Was it because I let my battery drain all the way to 0% twice? Did it do damage? Erg.

Here's how Dell likes to troll:




@dale_101798 Thank you so much for that link! It'll always come in handy Smilie

I grew up hearing bad things about Dell, and people being disappointed when Dell bought Alienware, but honestly it's proving much, much more reliable than HP.
Reply Helpful Comment? 0 0
#11
so many experts here congratulation
Reply Helpful Comment? 0 0
#12
Quote from pamplemousse View Post :
@boboli Thank you so much for introducing that command and providing that article!

@jkee Looks like I'm at 93%. So I guess replacing it wouldn't do me any better. Tbh I'm not sure how accurate it is. I did the command on my Windows 7 3-year-old HP laptop's battery which has problems of shutting off when the battery's down to 50%, the results said its last charge capacity was equivalent to its design capacity -__-

Here's my Dell's:

Oh gosh, why is its last full charge capacity decreasing (I got the laptop on January 6). Was it because I let my battery drain all the way to 0% twice? Did it do damage? Erg.

Here's how Dell likes to troll:.
That screen showing estimated battery life is part of windows, not dell's design. The estimate varies depending on your power consumption. It can fluctuate significantly as you've observed.

Fully depleting the battery can re-calibrate things as you know, but it also counts as a full charge cycle. That re-calibration is why you saw a sudden drop in capacity. Batteries are usually rated for a particular number of charge cycles usually at least 300. If you recharge before you fully deplete the battery, you will generally extend it's life. I'd say it looks like you didn't get a brand new battery, which shouldn't be surprising. I'd guess your battery has less than 6 months of use. If you had a brand new battery you might get another 30 minutes of run time, but in a few months you'd be right back here.
Reply Helpful Comment? 1 0
#13
The bottom of the generated battery_report.html will have your Battery Life Estimate, which is probably the most interesting section for most users. Here you can see what the OS is predicting for your computer's battery life with regular usage. This feedback tends to be more stable and accurate than the live estimate found by clicking the battery icon.


Like all data sources, the more information this tool has, the more accurate the report. If you just installed a new OS, you need a few power cycles and a few days for the Battery Report to have enough data for it to be valuable. The longer you use the OS and the more you keep the laptop off of AC power the better the estimates are for the long run.
Reply Helpful Comment? 1 0
Joined Sep 2015
L2: Beginner
53 Posts
14 Reputation
Original Poster
#14
Quote from jkee View Post :
That screen showing estimated battery life is part of windows, not dell's design. The estimate varies depending on your power consumption. It can fluctuate significantly as you've observed.

Fully depleting the battery can re-calibrate things as you know, but it also counts as a full charge cycle. That re-calibration is why you saw a sudden drop in capacity. Batteries are usually rated for a particular number of charge cycles usually at least 300. If you recharge before you fully deplete the battery, you will generally extend it's life. I'd say it looks like you didn't get a brand new battery, which shouldn't be surprising. I'd guess your battery has less than 6 months of use. If you had a brand new battery you might get another 30 minutes of run time, but in a few months you'd be right back here.
Less than 6 months of use?! How'd you come to that?
Reply Helpful Comment? 0 0
#15
Quote from pamplemousse View Post :
Less than 6 months of use?! How'd you come to that?
Just a guess.
Reply Helpful Comment? 0 0
Page 1 of 2
1 2
Join the Conversation
Add a Comment
 
Copyright 1999 - 2016. Slickdeals, LLC. All Rights Reserved. Copyright / Infringement Policy  •  Privacy Policy  •  Terms of Service  •  Acceptable Use Policy (Rules)  •  Interest-Based Ads
Link Copied to Clipboard