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Shopping.com Tip: On the average, Apple MP3 players have a battery life of 12 to 18 months.
If your iPod is only holding charge for 2-3 hours before needing a recharge, chances are you need a new battery. The best way to tell if you need a new battery is to plug it in to an AC source using the included power cord. If it works perfectly when plugged in, and then stops immediately after you take away the power, you definitely need a new battery.
The good news is that there are many sources for replacement batteries that include tools and detailed instructions.
It is recommended that you back up all your music and data stored on your Apple MP3 player before swapping out the battery.