N3DS XL battery replacement

Discussion in '3DS - Console, Accessories and Hardware' started by AyanamiRei, Nov 1, 2018.

  1. AyanamiRei
    OP

    AyanamiRei GBAtemp Fan

    Member
    2
    Sep 24, 2015
    France
    Hello and sorry for the disturbance.

    My EU n3DS XL battery (SK-003) inflated around a month ago but I kept using it until a few days ago without a problem (despite the obvious problems to close the back completely). Now, it can't retain power for more than two dozen minutes i, the best case.

    Does anyone has a model / product to advise ? I first tried to check Nintendo's websites but there is no battery to buy on them, so I guess I'm stuck with unofficial batteries, right?

    PS: living in France.

    PPS: thanks in advance.
     
  2. KleinesSinchen

    KleinesSinchen The Backup Reminder

    Member
    8
    Mar 28, 2018
    Germany
    Nintendo of Europe has a questionable policy about replacement/spare parts. They do not send them to the customer in general (with some exceptions on the German website one can order touchpens (YEAH!) and a complete Wii U gamepad)
    They do not send batteries anymore. This is so bad. So dangerous. The end user should not do such a thing!! Send your device in.

    I just searched amazon.fr and got a lot of these cheap batteries with very high mAh (fake!) ratings. Like here. These batteries are mostly bad.

    On this German Nintendo site is a price list:
    https://www.nintendo.de/Hilfe/Ninte...turpreisliste/Reparaturpreisliste-246860.html
    A battery replacement costs only 7,74€ but you have to pay for the shipping in both directions, too.

    I did not find this list on the corresponding French site. But it’s worth a try to contact them. Maybe you can convince them to send a battery to you. (Or send the inflated battery with a non hacked unit to them).
    https://www.nintendo.fr/Assistance/...-garantie/Reparations/Reparations-244741.html
     
  3. AyanamiRei
    OP

    AyanamiRei GBAtemp Fan

    Member
    2
    Sep 24, 2015
    France
    @KleinesSinchen Thanks !
    To send back my unit is the last thing I want to do (not only is it modified but I don't have the money to pay the double postal fees). Plus, the french service (or rather belgium french-speaking service) can only be contacted through a special phone number. ^^"

    @TurdPooCharger Are those generic batteries bad in terms of charged time, durability or effects on the console itself? Any "good" brand?
     
  4. KleinesSinchen

    KleinesSinchen The Backup Reminder

    Member
    8
    Mar 28, 2018
    Germany
    Sorry, I didn't see that at first. They are not normal, are they? They want 0,40€ per minute?! In the German version of the site they also have e-mail and chat support and the phone number is a normal number. I just used the chat and asked for a new battery.
    It was really funny: no chat protocol but similar:

    Me: "My SPR-003 battery from the old 3DSXL has gone bad. I need a new one."
    Support "No, we don't have single batteries. You have to send it in. We replace it."
    Me: "That's a little overkill to send the device in for changing the battery."
    Support: "Could be a faulty mainboard if it discharges so fast."
    Me: (after waiting a little to stop laughing. Thankfully I did not use the phone support) "No. I tried the battery from my new 3DSXL and it has no problems." (It's true. I did not lie to them. I need a new battery for the O3DSXL and the device has no other problem at all.)
    Support: "Then you're probably right. But you can't get a battery. Send the 3DS in."
    Me: "Yeah. I will think about it. Thank you."

    I just don't understand Nintendo. In the USA and Canada you can order batteries on the website. In Europe: nothing. Germany has good support via phone, chat and mail. France not. But the bigger (official) battery for the Wii U gamepad was never sold in Germany. I had to order it from France (amazon.fr).

    Why? Seriously, why??
     
    TurdPooCharger and AyanamiRei like this.
  5. AyanamiRei
    OP

    AyanamiRei GBAtemp Fan

    Member
    2
    Sep 24, 2015
    France
    Sounds like they absolutely want to get a taste of your device.

    Well, I'll keep playing plugged on for a few more weeks whle I search, if I can TOo bad I was using it for my morning clock too.
     
  6. TurdPooCharger

    TurdPooCharger Meh

    Member
    12
    Jan 1, 2018
    United States
    @AyanamiRei,

    :!: Read this about the dangers of using and keeping a bloated li-ion battery.

    (Substitute Australia for France / your country of origin or living.)
    Generic li-ion batteries vary in quality from OEM-like to total shit. 3rd party battery manufacturers have differing standards than that of officially licensed Nintendo produced batteries. You're basically playing the lottery when it comes to buying batteries. Sometimes you get lucky if you know what you're buying and from who. Most people get an okay battery that's not as good as their original. Others still get duds.

    Generic batteries can range anywhere from:
    • Perfect or near perfect from a batch that was rejected for too many failed test samples. (ie: 1 of out every X number)
      • These could have been real Nintendo batteries but were instead relabeled as generics. These are your "bad" batteries where most are still good enough to use.
    • Fakes that are cut down in li-ion material or have falsely stated mAh capacity.
      • You may find batteries that are promising the impossible. A real Nintendo o3DSXL / n3DSXL SPR-003 battery has a stated capacity of 1750 mAh while a generic brand like this TOMEE says it's a 2500 mAh. It is impossible to squeeze 43% more juice with today's li-ion battery technology for the same given size.
    • Middle of the road; you get what you pay for.
      • Your typical generic batteries may be labelled with a reasonable mAh capacity but have somewhere around 90% of actual usable capacity.
    • Counterfeits.
      • Very common for cellphones, your worse offenders label their batteries as genuine first party brands like Samsung, LG, Nokia when they aren't.
        • I don't know if this the case for 3DS batteries, but it's worth noting that it happens in this market segment.
    You might get a battery that has a great capacity but short lifespan due to imperfect or defective manufacturing. These tend to swell overtime even when not exposed to extreme heat, but this doesn't always happen. You won't know if yours a dud until it's too late. Bloating occurs because of gas buildup from overcharging and from oxidation of poor quality electrolyte. A puffed battery = ticking time bomb. ← Don't use it; get rid of it.

    As far as concern goes for using a generic li-ion battery safely on your 3DS, as long as that battery supplies the correct voltage (~3.7 V) and a steady amperage (dunno the figure for the 3DS), it will work fine and not harm your handheld. Hell, it is better to use a generic battery that has a crappy duration of charge than a bloated official Nintendo battery with intact battery life (for safety reasons). If your battery can't properly deliver power and the 3DS shuts itself off due to it, that battery should not be used as this can corrupt your SD card during read/write.

    Another thing to keep in mind is that li-ion batteries begin deteriorating the moment they leave the factory. Even if you bought a brand new Nintendo battery today straight from the press line and left it in a dry, cool storage unused for over a year from now, that battery will not keep a charge as good at its freshest when you first got it. As the clock ticks, all li-ion batteries sitting in warehouses across the world are slowly degrading.

    Estimating how a generic battery compares against an official battery (in terms of battery life).

    If you can't afford or can't obtain an official Nintendo 3DS battery from a legitimate store, your only option left is either to scavenge for a good condition used or go with a new generic battery.

    Other than testing a fully charged, replacement battery by measuring the time how long it lasts in a typical game play, there's a way to quickly gauge the maximum possible battery life of your generic battery. Using a kitchen scale, the math formula is:

    (mass of generic battery) ÷ (mass of official battery) × (mAh capacity of official battery) ≈ mAh of generic battery
    n3DS battery, (g) and (oz)

    n3DSXL battery, (g) and (oz)

    Assuming my digital kitchen scale is accurate and that there are no major variations in official 3DS battery manufacturing,

    SPR-003 battery (metric unit):
    Code:
    generic mass (g) ÷ 37 g × 1750 mAh ≈ generic capacity (mAh)

    KTR-003 battery (metric unit):

    Code:
    generic mass (g) ÷ 31 g × 1400 mAh ≈ generic capacity (mAh)
    This formula is useful if you're able to refund purchases with a short return period, examine generic batteries in-person before purchasing, or cross comparing for acceptable charge duration versus money spent.


    Shopping for generic batteries.
    This is a subject like buying anything else online. I can only give a few pointers:
    • Find sellers with high ratings but also read their negative feedbacks. Watch out for some wholesalers that thrive on bait & switch listings, drop shipping, Ponzi-like schemes. They stay in business because their business host won't suspend what is their cash cow.
    • Find items that are popularly bought. Read the reviews of what others wrote about them.
    • Know that the internet can lie you to. Ignore feedbacks and reviews that don't go into details.
      • Comments like "Good.", "Great item. :)", "Fast shipping. A++" etc are either lazy buyers who don't check their purchases or paid shills to upvote a seller's reputation.
    • Avoid eBay sellers that have weird names, have good feedback ratings but not that many (like between 20 to 100), have been a long time member, and are selling one or a few wholesale items. These are the "amass suckers' money and close PayPal account" sleeper scam artists.
    • If you have the time to research, cross compare commodity items between eBay, aliexpress, Amazon, and whatever big retail e-stores. Check what are the going prices in other countries so you know what's reasonable cost.
    • I don't know if your country France does price matching for goods sold in-store and online. In other countries, especially those with outdoor bazaars and stands, they do bartering.
    • Sometimes you're not given any favorable shopping options. :(

    Try contacting these three* US sellers if they're willing to ship to France. If they're willing to, you're looking around US $30+ per battery.

    If US $30 is too expensive, it looks like you'll have to take the settle for the next best. You'll need to bundle shop for other stuff to meet the €25 free shipping if you don't have Amazon Prime.

    Lastly, if you're super broke, are willing to wait, and just need a battery that won't ka-splode on you:
     
    Last edited by TurdPooCharger, Nov 2, 2018
  7. AyanamiRei
    OP

    AyanamiRei GBAtemp Fan

    Member
    2
    Sep 24, 2015
    France
    Thanks to my chance, I ended up with a very short-lived chinese (I guess) battery. When I let my console to rest (packed) in my room at school during summer, it didn't survive the successive heatwaves and a month later, the machine's back was forced opened by the obese batterypack.

    Anyway, it's not something interesting for people who could find this thread. The interesting thing is that after "wrestling" through telephone and e-mail with the customer service and aftersales department of Nintendo FRANCE, I finally got an e-mail ("SAdministratif") to contact in order to buy console "parts" without returning my n3DS XL ! I simply had to fill in a formular then make a telephone call to pay (using a bank card).

    I doubt it woud have made any difference between it staying in the dark in the city or coming with me in the country, when we were suffering in both places of 30-37°C every day during several weeks. I mainly wrote that because I was already annoyed by then by its poor capacity (from 3h to 20-30mn unplugged in 4 four months, when I only used it a 4-8hours every week).

    What I meant with chinese battery was more like "obscure brand". Sorry for my poor expression.
     

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    Last edited by AyanamiRei, Sep 18, 2019
  8. TurdPooCharger

    TurdPooCharger Meh

    Member
    12
    Jan 1, 2018
    United States
    You can't blame the battery because Li-ion batteries are highly susceptible to high heat damage. The mistake is on you for leaving behind your 3DS at school... Or, if you want to blame people in general for contributing to global warming.

    Also, all official Nintendo 3DS batteries are made in China by Wuxi Hitachi Maxell Co., Ltd.
     
    AyanamiRei likes this.
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