What Does It Mean When Your Camera Says Battery Exhausted

There are no two words that shutterbugs hate more than ‘Battery Exhausted’. Now, if it’s just a matter of charging and you have an extra in the bag, it’s all good. But what if it’s more than that? Let’s see what you can do about it and find out why does my camera says battery exhausted.

If you are using a Sony camera, battery exhausted means it needs to be charged or that the terminal is unclean. The other reason why the battery is exhausted is due to bad handling. If you have a Nikon coolpix camera battery exhausted message, it could mean that the battery is drained or the door cap needs to be replaced or that the battery settings on your camera need to be adjusted. In some cases, you might just need to take out the battery and memory card and put them back in.

Depending on the brand, there could be more than a couple of reasons why your camera is giving you the ‘Battery Exhausted’ message. What does battery exhausted mean? Once you know what those conditions are, you will not only be able to sort out your existing predicament but also be able to avoid repeating such mistakes in the future. Let’s take a look at the scenarios that lead to this result.

Camera Battery Exhausted: Understanding the Process

In a long run in using your camera, you will receive a message about a warning battery exhausted. You would think this message is self-explanatory but if you switch on your camera, whether it is a DSLR or a digital camera, and see a message saying ‘Battery Exhausted’. The first question that comes to mind is what is the meaning of battery exhausted? There are a couple of reasons why. Now, this differs based on the manufacturer.

In some brands, battery exhausted meaning could be that the door cap of your battery is damaged. In that case, you can take it to the authorized repair center and replace it. Sometimes, it is just as simple as a rechargeable lithium-ion in the camera being seriously low or almost depleted. The battery is dead and you need to charge it. What you saw was the device firing a warning shot. To charge it, typically you must remove the battery from the camera and connect it to the AC adapter and the charging cable to a wall socket. These cables will come with the camera. You can also buy them on the internet. You will also get a USB cable with most cameras which allows you to plug it into a computer and charge it.

The exhausted battery error message is actually quite common in some brands like Nikon. While one possibility is that the battery might have drained, it could also be that you are dealing with a defective battery. So, remove it from the camera, charge it to its full capacity and check it by placing it in the camera again. If you are dealing with a healthy battery that lost charge, all you need to do is charge it and the camera will switch on normally. If it turns on and camera says battery exhausted error message, there are a couple of things you can do. We will talk about it in a minute.

Sony Battery Exhausted

When dealing with Sony cameras, proper battery maintenance is crucial to avoid seeing the “Sony Battery Exhausted” message. Two battery messages to look for are:

  • ‘Sony Battery Level High’
  • ‘Sony Battery Exhausted’

Remember, it takes about a minute for the battery indicator to show up once you switch your Sony camera on. There are some operating and environmental conditions to consider when looking for the Sony camera battery indicator:

Low Temperatures

The performance of a battery is negatively affected when it is exposed to low temperatures. To avoid this, keep the batteries close to your body and warm, and do not keep them exposed when shooting. Place the battery into the camera immediately after taking it out.

High Temperatures

The battery pack also has an adverse reaction to extreme heat. Avoid leaving the battery exposed to heat in a car or direct sunlight. Do not allow the battery to come into contact with water.

Charging and Cleaning

Remember to clean the battery terminal using a soft cloth or cotton swab to prevent error messages and malfunctions. Charge the battery in a room with a temperature range of 50 to 86 degrees Fahrenheit. If charging with a USB cable connected to your computer, remove the camera before switching off the former.

To ensure the battery is safe from external environmental factors, store it properly. Charge the battery and drain it completely at least once a year. Then, remove the battery and store it in a cool and dry place. Avoid storing it in the refrigerator. If you haven’t managed to exhaust the battery completely before storing it, you can keep the camera in slideshow mode and leave it until it dies. During this process and while storing it, ensure the camera is away from metals (like the keys in your pocket) to prevent staining of the terminal and the possibility of a short circuit. Keeping it in a plastic bag is not a terrible idea.

Sony cameras come with an auto power-off function. So, if you don’t use the camera for a little while, it will switch off on its own. Sometimes when it switches back on, it is possible that the battery time is not visible on the screen. In that case, you just need to press the DISP button.

With Sony a6000 battery exhausted cases, try charging the battery and turning on the camera. If this does not help, you may have a defective battery.

What does battery exhausted mean on Nikon Coolpix L810?

When you are dealing with a Nikon battery exhausted, there are a few things you can do.

Battery Settings

You must ensure that the battery settings are the way they are intended. Otherwise, you see the error message. You can fix it by following these instructions:

  1. Switch on the camera and go to ‘Menu’.
  2. Go to Setup and choose ‘Battery Type’.
  3. Select the model of battery you are using and press ‘OK’.
  4. Ideally, this should work.

Replace the Batteries

The second solution is to replace the batteries. This must be done if the batteries are completely depleted and cannot be revived. There was a time when this was a common problem among Nikon users and they chose to go from lithium batteries to alkaline models.

Then you must make sure that the new batteries are properly charged for the recommended amount of time which is typically six to eight hours. But be sure to check the battery capacity beforehand.

With Nikon, you must also ensure that the charger is connected in the right order. This is common to some Nikon Coolpix battery exhausted not charging. Start by connecting the USB cable to the adapter. Then connect the adapter to the wall outlet while making sure that the camera is switched off. And in the end, you must connect the USB cable to the camera.

It is still best to consult a professional for problems like what does battery exhausted mean on a camera brand to get some advice on suitable batteries.


Sometimes, all you need to do is take out the memory card and the battery. After a few seconds, put them back in and charge the camera battery. Remember that these solutions are only for chargers that are recommended by Nikon. There is no guarantee they will work with universal adapters that are not approved by the company.

And finally, of course, as mentioned in the beginning, you must check the door cap.

About the author, Phil Borges

Phil Borges is a battery aficionado. He's written extensively about batteries, and he loves nothing more than discussing the latest innovations in the industry. He has a deep understanding of how batteries work, and he's always on the lookout for new ways to improve their performance.