Canon S100 battery pack error
July 1, 2014 8:17 AM   Subscribe

My Canon S100 is just two years old (so out of warranty). I bought 2 batteries with it, and two more generics a year later. Now when I put any of the four into the camera I get a black screen with white text saying, "Change the battery pack."

All batteries are fully charged and I've scuffed up the contacts with no results. Google tells me to try a brand new battery, but I'm not in a hurry to spend more money on this camera if it's really done for. Is there any way to, I don't know, reset the batteries? Reboot the camera? What to do next?
posted by acorncup to Technology (5 answers total)
Lithium batteries undergo chemistry changes beginning the instant they are manufactured. After two years they can be pretty much useless (though some can last a bit longer). This chemistry change is not related to any use pattern; it happens if the battery is in constant use and it happens if the battery is not used at all.

Your batteries are all dead of old age, and the only solution is to buy new, young ones.
posted by Chocolate Pickle at 9:34 AM on July 1, 2014

Go to amazon and buy a 3-pack of generic batteries from Random Vendor for $5. At least one of those should work decently.
posted by disconnect at 10:04 AM on July 1, 2014

How did the problem first manifest? Did all of your batteries start failing at the same time?

If they all started failing at exactly the same time, I would suspect something other than the batteries is at fault.

However, if you have a decent camera store nearby, you might be able to ask them if they have a battery you can put in to test with. If a known-good battery produces the same symptoms then you have to look to the camera for your explanation.
posted by Nerd of the North at 1:13 PM on July 1, 2014

Did you check the voltage at the packs? I'd do that first to see if it actually is the batteries.

Unfortunately I've had more than one Canon behave in the way you are describing, including our S100 which did it sporadically. The S100 which was put out to pasture after its second lens error issue about a month ago. I have some batteries and chargers for it you could have though....
posted by Big_B at 4:15 PM on July 1, 2014

I borrowed a voltmeter. These batteries are 3.7v. Using the voltmeter's 3v 1mA Lithium setting, all 4 are way over into the green "good" range. The camera quit accepting them all in the same week. I'm going to order a battery from amazon just to be sure, but it looks to me like the fault might be with the camera.
posted by acorncup at 7:22 PM on July 1, 2014

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