There’s nothing quite like a brand new laptop battery—it seems like they stay charged for days on end, but they don’t usually stay that way for long. Like a car’s value depreciating the second you drive it off the lot, your laptop battery starts losing its power to hold a charge the second you turn it on. Before you know it, you’re running to find a charger every two or three hours.
You don’t always have to be slave to the charger, though. If you’re careful and take certain steps, you can be back to wireless freedom in no time.
- Don’t plug anything else in.
Plugging anything into your laptop is going to zap the battery. If you’re trying to conserve your laptop’s battery life, never use it to charge your phone, camera, etc., as that will only drain it faster. Additionally, using anything with your laptop requires extra power, so using external microphones, webcams, or earphones will also drain the battery faster.
- Adjust your settings.
Ensuring your computer is doing as little as possible is key to improving your laptop’s battery life. Many computers offer low-power settings, which makes it easy to ensure your laptop is running as efficiently as possible, but you should still make sure your computer is set to consistently use minimal power. First, check that the screen lighting is as low as you can comfortably manage, then turn off keyboard backlighting. If possible, also completely mute your laptop.
- Turn off background apps and programs.
Every program on your laptop requires the use of power, so leaving programs running in the background of your computer will only drain the battery. Make sure to completely close out of all programs and apps, and try to avoid multitasking. If you can run only one program at a time, you will use less power and prolong your laptop’s battery.
- Disable Bluetooth.
Even if you’re not connected to anything, your laptop will be searching for Bluetooth connections any time Bluetooth is turned on. The same is true for Wi-Fi, so if you’re not trying to connect to the Internet, turn off Wi-Fi as well, if you want to save your battery.
- Stay out of extreme temperatures.
Using your laptop or leaving it in extreme heat or cold can cause it to work harder, which drains battery. Not to mention, heat is always bad for a laptop battery. Be sure to pay attention to your laptop’s temperature, because as you use it for long periods of time, it will start to overheat. Using your laptop on a hard surface provides better ventilation than your lap or the couch, and running as little programs as possible will help to prevent your laptop from heating itself too much.
- Don’t keep your laptop plugged in.
Laptops plugged in at all times have been found to have fewer cycles than laptops that are only plugged in when charging. Keeping your battery between 20% and 80% is considered the “magic number” to keeping your laptop battery lasting as long as possible.
Start Improving Your Laptop’s Battery Life
Whether you’re working from the office, home, or a coffee shop — and your primary workstation is a laptop — it’s important to know these helpful tips and tricks to improve your laptop’s battery life. Want more tech savvy tips on creating a successful and secure workplace? Check our IT blog.