How to check the battery health of a Chromebook

With just two commands you can learn more about your Chromebook battery than what the system tray indicator tells you.

How to check the battery health of a Chromebook

If you're Chromebook user you probably enjoy a fairly significant daily life from that battery. I for one, often opt to use my Pixel 2 over my MacBook Pro, because 12 hours of battery life beats six hours any day.

As you use Chromebook, you can see the battery indicator ever so slowly trickling down (ever so slowly being the operative phrase). But that system tray indicator is really only an estimate of how your battery is fairing. What if you wanted to really know the health of your Chromebook battery?

SEE: Hardware decommissioning policy (Tech Pro Research)

Two tools

Fortunately, the developers thought to include a couple of tools in the operating system to help you. Said tools are commands that will report back the true health and other information about your battery. The first command immediately indicates the health of the battery (in a percentage) and then runs a five-minute battery discharge test.

The second command reports a good amount of information about the battery, but more importantly, the cycle count. This will tell you how many charge cycles your Chromebook has gone through (understanding most batteries have around 500 charge cycles).

Run commands

How do you run these commands? First, you must open the Crosh tool by hitting the [Ctrl]+[Alt]+[T] key combination. From the Crosh terminal, type the command battery_test to view battery health and run the discharge test.

The second command (to view the battery information, including cycle count) is battery_firmware info. With this information, you can get a better understanding of how long that battery might have left before it won't charge as expected. Putting those two bits of information together, know that the battery health percentage is the amount (out of 100%) that your battery can currently charge. So if your battery health is 98.63%, and your battery has 210 cycles, that means the highest your battery will charge is 98.63%, and you have roughly 290 full-charge cycles left.

Keeping tabs on Chromebook battery health helps you get the most out of your hardware.

Also see

Image: Jack Wallen

By Jack Wallen

Jack Wallen is an award-winning writer for TechRepublic, The New Stack, and Linux New Media. He's covered a variety of topics for over twenty years and is an avid promoter of open source. For more news about Jack Wallen, visit his website jackwallen....