Make Your Laptop Battery Last Longer
The professionals shifted from desktops to laptops looking for convenience and the compact size of the machines, and the mobility it provides us. You can easily carry your laptop to a coffee shop in a break and use it for checking your mails or just casually surfing the internet while you are sipping your coffee. But most laptops run out of juice in a short time, giving you less than 15 minutes even on full charge. When the laptop is new, the average battery time is around 3-4 hours without problem but in a couple of years it degrades and you will be stuck with 15-20 minutes of battery time, and will almost always need a power supply to run your machine, undermining the whole purpose of buying a laptop. Thankfully, there is a way to make your laptop battery last longer by taking a few simple precautions and using the machine efficiently. Here’s how you can make your laptop run longer on battery even after 2-3 years of its use:
- Defragment your laptop on a regular basis- Defragmentation refers to clearing up memory holes in your hard disk and bringing together all the data and other files. This enhances the performance of the hard drive and reduces the stress on the battery.
- Reducing the brightness of your screen – Bright screens, glowing wallpapers and illuminating screensavers cost you a lot of the battery, so try to dim your display when on plugged into power supply, and will give you more time on your battery.
- Shut down background apps – Running applications like messenger, iTunes, desktop search, etc. consume a lot of battery power so you should try avoiding these applications while you are on battery. Sometimes the background apps may not be visible so you can check and shut them down from the task manager (press Ctrl+Alt+Del to get the task manager).
- Avoid using external devices – When on battery, we should try not to use external USB devices such as pen drives or even the mouse as they consume additional power. In a situation where using the external device is absolutely necessary, make sure you eject them as soon as their work is done.
- Access your data from hard drive instead off a CD/DVD – If you think the hard drive is power consuming, the CD/ DVD ROMS are even worse, and utilize power even if you are not using it. It’s best to remove the CD/DVD media from your drive while on battery. Software that makes virtual drives on your system is very efficient for having a virtual CD ROM or DVD ROM mounted. Some of the common virtual drive software includes Power ISO, Ultra ISO, Alcohol 120% and a few others.
- Keep the contacts clean and dust free – Cleaning the metallic battery contact clean and tide proves to be helpful in efficient power transfer. The battery should be removed once or twice a month and the contacts should be cleaned with a piece of cloth to ensure efficient use of your laptop battery.
- Charging and discharging efficiently – The battery will last longer if you take good care of it. We should not leave the battery on charge forever, and should use the battery power at least once or twice a week to exercise the battery. The Li-On batteries should not be completely discharged, and the fact that draining the battery completely increases performance is not true for the modern day batteries, and you will end up destroying your battery if you let it discharge completely several times.
- Use hibernation – It is of course a good practice to leave your laptop computer on standby mode when not in use, but it is an even better and power efficient practice to hibernate your laptop when not in use, as it uses no power when in hibernation mode and will save your battery completely.
- Efficient Use of Power Option – You could switch to the power saver mode when on battery to give you longer usage on battery. The mode is available in power options in your control panel.
- Avoid Multitasking – When on battery, trying doing one task at a time. If you have a song on in the background while surfing the net, and also a pdf running which you might not be reading, your battery is sure to drain out quickly. Rather, do one thing at a time, then move on to the next task.
- Demand Less – If you are surfing the net, if your laptop shows 1 hour battery time left, it will turn off faster if you switch to a high power consumption task like putting on a video or a application. So demand less from your laptop while on battery power.[/pluslist]
Shahenshah is a computer science engineer who likes to do things differently. He spends most of his time with the love of his life which is his computer, using it mostly for gaming and writing and has a incredible knack for peppering humour into his life.