One of the benefits of using a laptop over a desktop computer is the mobility you get. The reason laptops can move around with you is because they have a battery, and if that battery goes out, your laptop becomes anchored to an outlet. Laptop batteries can burn out for a number of reasons, but mostly it comes down to improper care and use. There are lots of little things you can do, which will protect your battery, extend its life, and increase the amount of time it keeps your laptop charged. Here are three simple methods to make your battery last.
- Optimize your power settings. You laptop isn’t automatically set up in a way to protect and save your battery. Starting out, it will run itself much like a desktop computer, which isn’t exactly efficient for running on a battery. All you need to do is go into your windows control panel and look at the settings you can control. Some examples of power-saving techniques are setting up sleep mode after a few minutes of activity, reducing screen brightness to something still visible, but less than normal, and turning off your wireless if you are not using the Internet. Adjusting the screen brightness can be easier on your eyes as well as saving your computer battery. The best thing to do is familiarize yourself with the power options in the control panel, and find the settings that work best for your needs.
- Let your battery discharge. Leaving your battery fully charged at all times may seem like a good idea, but it can actually shorten your battery life dramatically. A battery needs to do work in order to stay in optimal condition, much like the muscles of a human body need to be worked in order to stay fit. The best way to do this is to unplug your laptop every 2 weeks, and let the battery run down to 25% – 15%. When it gets down this low, then plug it back in and let it charge. Letting the battery get any lower than this can be harmful and reduce its life. Whatever you do, you shouldn’t ever let your battery discharge completely if at all possible. This is severely harmful to Li-Ion batteries, which is the type of battery in most modern laptops.
- Keep your battery clean. The metal contacts on your battery should be cleaned to keep the power transfer efficient and reduce the heat generated. Cleaning these contacts is easy, simply moisten a cloth with rubbing alcohol, and gently wipe the metal down. This doesn’t need to be done often, maybe once every 3-4 months. If for any reason you are uncomfortable cleaning the battery, you can take it in to a computer repair specialist to have it taken care of. If you take your computer in every so often for general maintenance anyway, you can ask them to clean the battery then.
These are three great ways to lengthen the battery life in your laptop. if you want more tips for taking care of laptop batteries, you can try asking your local IT service, or doing a little more research on the Internet.