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Battery / Power problems

When my Pi-top is charged I'd unplug it from the wall but immediately the pi top would turn off. For a while all i'd have to do is try to remember to shut down when its charged then unplug it. However, perhaps i forgot to do that one to many times now I get no indication of battery charge, nor does the pi top power up without being plugged into the wall. Its become highly inconvenient and Im not sure whats damaged or how to fix it, what can be done?Thank you very much

22 people have this problem

To everybody, I will test the PiTop teams willingness to replace this now terminally discharged battery system as unusable for the purpose for which it was purchased as a software and LoRaWAN dev system as advertised by the vendor xS components UK to see if they will honou r the UK 6 year warranty period for electrical goods ' built with a substantial service life in mind.

So now to raise a ticket politely speaking. they may require me to go to the original vendor, fair play, but do they see the unit with an accurate report of the mode of failure¿

Hi Alexandra. Have you checked out the $99(USD) Pinebook at There are 2 models: 11.6 inch diag screen for $89(USD) and 14 inch diag for $99(USD). I think they’re based on pine64 board, similar to Raspberry Pi 3b. ZDnet ran a recent review. Specs are similar to Pi-Top but much cheaper & fully built. I doubt it’d run Raspbian, but does run a Linux distro and has 2GB RAM. May be useful to look at. I’m certainly interested as 2GB RAM and 10 hour advertised battery life make it a potentially useful alternative.
Hi Ian, yes I have been searching for an alternate and with HD screen and I found something on AliX press that offered hi-res touch screen 12" and accepted a range of SBCs with Pi i/o. The total package appears to offer the continuity of a decent work surface with an upgradeable processor package similar to the Pi series and this remains my desired pathway. But for now my investment in a group supported project is my first and only choice as long as the loyalty of the initial investors is honoured by the the company that asked us all for help. Until such time as they make the fatal mistake of alienating people by simple bad manners I will continue to comingle with the comments and contributions of goodwill, present company included of course, learning from others good example I feel each minute is worthwhile. Thank you for reminding me to look again. P.s. I have subscribed to a couple of YouToobers who specialise in maker products so there are currently several "Pi-killer" boards that have to in some way conform at least in part to our beloved Pi but if only to find something superior which I don't think is possible because the Pi has genetically filled a functional gap in species developmental psychology (doh!) Allowing many of us to talk to one another about loads of stuff where we would otherwise be doing godz knows what out of sheer boredom! Most likely in isolation and without dialogue. No? Did I really hear that or have I finally lost the plot? (Smile) Thanks for bothering to read this far anyhow.
Hi Alexandra, I was wondering how well the ASUS Tinkerboard would slot into the Pi-Top. It too has 2GB RAM, is of the same form factor as the RPi3 and has exact same GPIO pinouts. So at first glance it would seem to provide a substitute that could turn the Pi-Top into a proper laptop. At $99(USD) it’s more expensive, but it is more powerful. Again not sure if it would run Pixel. I did build a mini-Mac portable out of foam card, hot glue, vinyl wrapping paper, RPi3, 2.5amp rechargeable battery pack and 7inch lcd screen(not touch screen but can be done for few dollars more) with Logitech wifi keyboard/mouse combo. Works quite well and I get around 5 hours. The battery’s 2 USB ports are used to,power the Pi3 (2.5 amps) and screen (1.0 amps). And all this is simply. Plug in. No wiring required - unless you need sound.
Hi, For me the number 1 issue is the unreliable battery pack.
I want to see a solution at zero cost.
How can we get there?
1) someone representing our user group should get in contact with pi-top and find out what pi-top offers and for how long, or,
2) pi-top sells the Battery business to a well established 3rd party, or,
3) pi-top puts on GitHub all things battery, or,
4) no more Unlocking Keys nor SHA1.
5) lowering the capacity and number of cells is no solution. Then you could take out the battery and run on mains.
6) we look ourself for a Second Source.
What does the user community think?

yeah the battery problem with v1 of the pi-top is getting worse.    I left my pi-top unused in a backpack for a couple weeks. when I went back to it,  the battery was drained.  I plugged it in , it wouldn't charge.   I ran the firmware patch a number of times  maybe as many as twenty times, before the battery would start charging.  No answers from the team on this is definitely not a good thing.  I want to wait until someone tests the battery of version 2 of the pi-top before i commit ta purchase of that one.  for me though versioon 1 is done. 

hmm. yeah my battery seems right now to be trashed.  it is woring, but not charging past 95%.  so it is starting to fail.    I'll keep an eye on the forums for pi=top V2 issues, but at the moment I cannot see doing anything more with my pi-top Version 1.  As the battery isn't really my only issue,  I have another issue that I haven't detailed anywhere in the forums and it isn't battery related so I don't want to discuss it here. 

HI, Jesse and others,
Strange that running the Firmware Patch leads you to the conclusion that your Battery Pack is near its end.
I would think that the correct conclusion is that you fell victim of crappy firmware.
The Firmware Update does a reset of the TI BQ40z60. That's all it does.
Each Reset followed by an attempt to load, if tried multiple times, can break the Fatal Error loop if you're lucky.
On condition that the pi-top still runs on mains power, send me your Smart Battery Module and the Hub and I diagnose and repair them free of charge, No Battery cells please.
That's my Black Friday contribution.
Ivo J. L. A. Van Ursel

running the patch sucessfully before yesterday, the battery would charge to 100% . Running the patch yesterday and rerunning it a few times until it finally took, would only let the battery charge to 95%.  that with my other issue that isn't battery related has pushed me to decide to disassemble the pi-top version 1.  i will wait for reports of  no battery isses before purchasing pi-top version 2. 

Ico, you were right when you said crappy firmware.

I went to try and start the pi-top  from battery a few minutes ago. it woouldn't start up.  s o I plugged it into mains and started it. I ran the patch once. I unplugged it battery was at 95% capacity.  I let it drop to 93% then I plugged it back in and the dashboard is now showing the proper time to charge and it is charging.  no real way to tell if i will have to run the patch again tomorrow. this battery or hub or firmware is very flaky and i am not sure that I want to trust it at all.  I really hope that thiis issue has been solved with the newest hardware. I iwll document my unmentioned issue in another post real quick..

Hi Jesse,
Glad to hear that.
If needed, my Black Friday offer still stands.
Ivo J. L. A. Van Ursel


Hi Ivo, what blacked out Pi-day offer do you have please?

Thank you,


Hi Alexandra,

pi-top users who happen to have an out-of-warrantee pi-top that only boot and run from mains power and not from battery power can send me their Smart Battery Module AND Hub, for diagnosis and repair.

No batteries please.

No mix of Smart Battery Module and Hub, both from the same machine.

Shipping not included.

I'm not affiliated with pi-top.


Ivo J. L. A. Van Ursel


Hello Ivo,

I would like to take you up on your repair offer please.

How can I contact you direct?

Best regards,




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