4 Options for Replacing a Dead iPad Battery

You don't have to buy a new iPad if your battery is failing

The inside of an iPhone without a battery

Paul Thompson/Corbis Documentary/Getty Images

The iPad's battery is arguably its most important feature. After all, if your iPad doesn't have any power, all of its other features are useless. The iPad's battery generally has a life of a few years, but if your battery is starting to fail, you've got a problem. You can't easily replace an iPad's battery because Apple designs its products with solid cases that end users can't get into without some real effort and skill.

This doesn't mean you're stuck having to buy a new iPad. Here are four options for what to do when your iPad battery won’t hold a charge and needs to be replaced.

iPads Under Warranty or AppleCare

If your iPad is still under its original warranty, or you purchased an AppleCare extended warranty that's still in effect, you're going to be pretty happy. Apple will replace the battery (actually the entire iPad!) for free.

Apple offers a way to check if your iPad is still under warranty (the article is about the iPhone, but everything in it applies to the iPad, too).

If your warranty is still active, go to this Apple website, click the Start a service request button, and fill in the form. You can also set up an appointment at an Apple Store and take your iPad in. Remember to back up your data before handing over your iPad—otherwise, you might lose all your data. Your repaired or replaced iPad should arrive 3-5 business days after you give yours to Apple. 

There is some fine print, of course: Apple may test your iPad to see if the problem was caused by something not covered by the warranty (if so, your replacement likely won't be free). Also, if your iPad had an engraving on it, the turnaround time can be up to 2 weeks, since they'll need to engrave your replacement iPad, too.

iPads With Expired Warranty

If your iPad is out of warranty, you're not out of luck, though the solution is going to be a bit more expensive. Apple will repair your battery US$99 (plus $6.95 shipping, and tax). The process for initiating this repair is the same as for iPads under warranty: Start a service request on Apple's site or go to an Apple Store.

Even if you have to pay, $99 is a good price for getting your iPad working again. That said, you should consider that cost versus the cost of getting an entirely new iPad. If the iPad whose battery has failed is pretty old, it may be better to put that money toward the cost of buying a new iPad.

Authorized Repair Shops

There are lots of shops that repair iPad screens and batteries. They're so numerous you can even find them in kiosks in many malls. They may charge less for a repair than Apple, but be careful. If you want to use one of these places, look for one that is Apple authorized to provide repairs. That means they're trained and experienced. Otherwise, you could end up with an inexperienced repairperson who causes more problems than they solve, and Apple may not help you fix them.

DIY iPad Battery Replacement

We strongly recommend against a do-it-yourself option ​unless you're very tech savvy and you're willing to risk potentially destroying your iPad. That said, with the right tools and skills, it's possible to replace an iPad battery yourself.

For about $50-90, you can buy all the tools and parts needed to replace your iPad battery. We don't believe it's worth the risk, considering that Apple's replacement only costs $99 and is guaranteed to solve your problem.

Also, be aware that trying to repair your own iPad voids its warranty (if it's still under warranty). If you ruin your iPad, Apple will not help you. You're truly on your own.

If you are still set on replacing your own iPad battery, iFixit has a tutorial on replacing an iPad battery that can help guide you.