Battery life is an important component to anyone who needs their laptop to last as long as possible. Sometimes you might need to use your laptop, but you just don’t have an available power source nearby. So I compiled a list of things you can do to squeeze every last minute of battery life from your computer. Some of the tips will help you amplify your battery life significantly, while some will only provide a small benefit. Maximizing the battery life and lifespan of your laptop’s battery can be done with a little bit of care.
Apple laptops feature advanced battery chemistry that greatly expands the battery’s lifespan. The built-in battery of your MacBook Pro or MacBook Air is designed to deliver up to 1000 full charge and discharge cycles.
It is important to keep the electrons in the battery moving occasionally in a lithium based battery. Don’t leave your laptop plugged in all the time. An ideal schedule would be using your laptop at school and charging it at home. This keeps the battery juices flowing. You should fully charge and discharge your battery at least once per month.
If you don’t plan on using your laptop for more than six moths, it is recommended to store it with 50% battery charge. If you store it with fully charged battery, it may result in some loss of battery capacity, meaning shorter life.
Conserving Battery Check List
The optimum temperature zone
Your laptop performs at its best at a temperature of around 23 Celsius to 35 Celsius. Higher temperatures could lead to damage to components and may effect longevity of your laptops. Thus you should maybe shutdown your computer when it becomes hot to give it a break.
Turn off the Wi-Fi/Bluetooth
When you don’t require Internet access, turning off your Wi-Fi can help with battery life quite a lot. When your Wi-Fi is on, your laptop continuously searches for Wi-Fi which uses a lot of the battery. Connecting via Ethernet cable (wire) and turning off your Wi-Fi is more efficient.
Avoid using the built-in camera
Taking pictures with Photobooth and using video iChats can really drain your battery life.
Turn down/off the backlit keyboard
Like any light source, the backlit keyboard requires energy. Turning it off will extend your battery life. (Mac users only)
Turn down the volume level
Use headphones or earphones if you do need to listen to sound.
Run fewer applications at once
Running fewer applications lower your hard drive usage, and thus your battery usage.
Turn down the screen brightness
Screens are one of the biggest power users in a laptop. Turning down the brightness as low as you can significantly helps you extend your battery life.
Turn off/reduce the frequency of auto-saves
Auto-save feature is very useful in applications, but these are terrible for battery performance. If the data isn’t important, reduce the frequency or turn off auto-save feature.
Use private browsing mode
Browsers like Safari, Firefox, and Chrome have a feature called private browsing. It is intended to hide history, cookies, and cache files. Temporary data like cookies are stored in memory which aren’t good for battery.
Calibrate the Battery
- Fully charge your laptop
- Once fully charged, leave it plugged in for at least another 2 hours
- Remove the plug, and use your computer until you get the battery level warning message.
- Ignore the message and keep working.
- Eventually the machine will go to sleep. Do NOT charge it. Instead, let it sleep for at least 5 hours.
- After the time has passed, plug it back in, and let it fully charge.
Use Energy Saver preferences
- From the Apple menu, choose System Preferences.
- From the View menu, choose Energy Saver.
- Go to Control Panel, change the View by: to Small icons.
- Click the Power Options. Select Power Saver.