One problem every laptop owner can relate to would be that of a fast draining battery. It’s sometimes funny to see your laptop battery holding up for just an hour when couple of months back it could last for up-to 14 hours straight.
According to research, we have come to realize that laptop battery are being misused, hence the reason why they don’t live up to expectation. In other to get the best out of your laptop battery, here are 11 tips to help you maximize your laptop battery life.
Tips on How to Improve Your Laptop Battery
Reduce the screen brightness
The brighter your screen, the more battery it consumes. Dimming the screen brightness can add 30 minutes or more to your battery life. Virtually all laptops have keyboard shortcuts to adjust the brightness. Typically, you’ll hold the Fn key and press one of the function keys in the top row, or one of the cursor keys labelled with a sun symbol.
If not, hold the Windows key and press X. This will open up the Mobility Center where you can change the brightness, and this works in all versions of Windows.
Disable Wi-Fi and Bluetooth
Leaving your WiFi and Bluetooth on often consumes the battery. If you’re not using them, disable Wi-Fi and Bluetooth. Both radios can use a fair amount of power, so it makes sense to turn them off when you’re on battery power. Most laptops have a switch or key combination to disable Wi-Fi, but Bluetooth can be trickier.
Some manufacturers provide a utility (often obvious in the Start menu) for enabling or disabling Bluetooth, but if in doubt, you can head to the Device Manager in the Control Panel, scroll through the list of hardware until you find the Bluetooth adapter, right-click on it and choose Disable. (Double-clicking on it when disabled should enable it again.)
Unplugged unused peripherals
According to PCMag, using external devices on your laptop while on battery can make the laptop battery drain faster. They also recommends you unplug any peripherals attached to the laptop. Says any external hard drive or webcam connected while using battery power should be removed. In addition to transferring data between your device and your laptop, that cable is also drawing power to the peripheral itself even when you’re not using it. That’s an obvious drain on your laptop battery. Also, Leaving a disc in your DVD drive is a sure way to reduce battery life, as it might spin up whenever you launch a Windows Explorer window or access the Save option in an application.
Don’t Overcharge your Laptop Battery
Except you are using a Lithium-ion battery, then you shouldn’t leave your laptop battery on plug all day. However, Some manufacturers (including Sony and Lenovo) provide a utility which limits the battery from fully charging. This helps to prevent battery degradation and means you can leave the laptop always connected to the mains. When you want to use your laptop on battery power and get maximum battery life, disable the limiter and allow the laptop to charge to 100 percent.
Upgrade from HDD to an SSD
Although you won’t see a huge improvement in battery life from this upgrade, it will have the extra benefit of making your laptop load quicker.
Switch to internal graphics
If your laptop has an AMD or Nvidia graphics chip, there’s a good chance it will also have integrated graphics (usually Intel). In theory, it should be set up so the powerful graphics chip is only used when playing games or running demanding applications, but you should check whether this is the case.
As with Bluetooth and Wi-Fi, manufacturers sometimes offer a utility to manually switch between graphics chips. You may have to reboot, but most modern designs allow you to switch on the fly.
We’ve seen such laptops last twice as long on battery power when the integrated graphics chips is used instead of the Nvidia or AMD chip.
Get a spear battery
Just like cars have spear tyre, your laptop should also have a spear battery just in case the main battery fails. Spare battery are available for many laptops, and you might even find that your laptop can accept a higher-capacity than was supplied originally.
But unfortunately, not all laptops has removable batteries. So if your laptop doesn’t have a removable battery then consider buying a universal laptop battery (laptop power bank) that comes with a variety of ‘tips’ to suit just about any laptop. You simply charge it up, choose the appropriate tip and connect it to your laptop’s power socket when the internal battery runs low. The external battery charges the internal battery or, if you remove the internal battery, powers the laptop directly.
Replace the battery
Batteries where not designed to last the lifetime of the laptop, and that’s why if you check the small print on the warranty statement – you’ll probably find that the battery isn’t covered, or is guaranteed for a shorter period than the laptop.
Over time, batteries degrade and after several years of hard use, you’ll probably find the battery only has 50 percent of its original capacity and lasts only half the time.
While some laptops don’t have user-replaceable batteries, most do and you can buy third-party replacements for considerably less than the cost of the equivalent from your laptop manufacturer.
Manage your memory
Just like every other machine, when you over load them, they will break down quickly and won’t last up to its lifespan. Same goes for laptops. Running too many app at a go means you overloading it’s memory. and the more memory it uses, the more power it drains fro the battery. This not only slows your computer down but also decreases battery life. One quick fix is to install more memory in your laptop, but keeping the bare minimum of programs and tabs open is another way.
Change the power settings
By default, your laptop might be set to Windows’ ‘Balanced’ setting rather than Power Saver. In the Control Panel search for Power Options and check which Power Plan is selected. Don’t forget that Windows uses different power and performance settings depending on whether it is running on mains or battery power.
You should find a battery saver option, and it’s simply a case of selecting it and closing the window. If not, click on ‘Show additional plans’. If there’s still nothing, you can customize a power plan by clicking Change plan settings next to a profile
You should set the screen to turn off after a couple of minutes, and set the laptop to sleep if nothing appears to be happening after five or 10 minutes as the case may be.
If you delve into the advanced power settings, you can tweak things to your liking, setting when the system hibernates and which components should use their maximum power saving profiles (including, on some laptops, the graphics card and Wi-Fi adapter).
In Windows 10, there’s a new toggle button to enable battery saver mode. This works like a phone’s and limits background activity such as push email.
Either click the battery icon to find it, or click the icon in the bottom right corner of the screen to bring up Action Center: you’ll see the Battery Saver tile near the bottom. It will be grayed out if your laptop charger is connected. To find out which apps are draining the most power, click the battery icon near the clock, then click Power & sleep settings. From the left-hand pane click Battery and then on the Battery usage by app link. You can also make this mode turn on automatically by ticking the box and adjusting the slider.
Keep your laptop out of heat
Extreme temperatures cause your computer to work harder, which in turn drains the laptop battery faster. Too much exposure to these extremes can also damage the battery itself so always use your laptop in a cool and dry environment.
How long should a good laptop battery last?
This varies depending on your usage,and the type of laptop. But the average laptop battery is good for around 500 recharges. After that, it starts to lose its capacity to hold a charge. That’s why the battery that once gave you, say, 5-6 hours worth of run-time now gives you just 1-2 hours
How many years should a laptop battery last?
A laptop battery should last between two and four years, or around 1,000 full charges. The total lifetime of a battery is dependent on several factors. These factors include battery type (NiCad, NiMH, or Li-ion), how often the battery is used, and its age.
What Laptop has the longest battery life?
- Dell XPS 13 9360 (15:14) hrs
- HP Envy x2 (Qualcomm) (14:22) hrs
- Lenovo Yoga C630 (12:14) hrs
- HP Spectre x360 (12:07) hrs
- Dell XPS 13 9370 (11:59) hrs
- Apple 15-inch MacBook Pro (11:57) hrs
- Dell XPS 15 (11:53) hrs
- Lenovo ThinkPad T480s (11:29) hrs