Posted by: on September 21, 2018 at 12:02 pm

photo of laptop on sofa to illustrate how not to preserve laptop battery life

Please don’t leave your laptop on the sofa if you care about your battery life.

Business laptops take a lot of abuse. They get tossed into bags, plunked onto counters, and even left behind in airplanes and taxis.

One of the easiest ways to reward your laptop for all its hard work is to help maintain its battery life. (And keep it dry – but that’s a separate post.)

1. Keep the Vents Clear

Never ever set your laptop on a couch cushion, a mattress, or anything soft that hinders airflow through the little slots on the bottom and sides of your machine. Those vents can suck up dust and debris, clogging up the fans and causing your laptop to work harder. And, the harder the machine works, the more battery power it is going to require. If you hear a loud buzzing (like a fan spinning really fast), or your laptop base is so hot you could cook an egg on it, you should consider moving to a tabletop or hard surface to work on. If this buzzing is consistent, the laptop doesn’t cool down or you need assistance cleaning the dust out of the vents, contact your IT provider.

2. Keep the Screen Brightness Down

When you do not need the screen brightness cranked up, turn it down. The screen is the number one battery drain on any mobile device, including your laptop. Adjusting this setting through the Power Options will prove beneficial. In Windows 10, select Start, choose Settings, then select System, then Display. Under Brightness and color, move the Change brightness slider to adjust the brightness. Please note, if you have external monitors connected to your laptop via a dock or cable, you may be able to adjust those with manual buttons on the monitor itself. Adjusting external monitors will not affect your laptop battery life, however.

3. Hibernate and Sleep

While you are in Settings, go to Power & sleep to help optimize battery life. In this screen, you have the ability to tell your computer what to do when it is plugged in, and when it is not plugged in. When you are just running on battery power and are not hooked up to any outlets, adjust the display to turn off or dim after a short period of time. Essentially, you want your laptop to hibernate and sleep sooner when it’s inactive and not being charged. Another way to edit these setting is to type “Power” into the search box, then select “Edit power plan.”

4. Unplug When Charged

When the battery is full and the laptop is not in use, unplug it from the charger. Generally speaking, and according to Battery University, a battery will give you 300 to 500 full discharge cycles or charges. Keeping it plugged in can significantly decrease the amount of charges that this battery can take. Keeping that juice flowing when the laptop battery is full can be damaging to some batteries. Battery University even recommends operating your laptop between forty and eighty percent battery life to get the most life out of the battery.

Do you need help managing your computer network hardware? Contact TAZ Networks today.

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