Does your 6-hour laptop battery barely make it to the two-hour mark? It's almost embarrassing when you are out in public and suddenly having to uncoil the power supply and then look around frantically for a receptacle. Typically, lithium ion batteries will loose about 20% of their operating capacity every year.
Here are some tips to help your laptop battery stay running longer - longer.
1. COOL IT, ALREADY! Those laptops can produce a lot of heat and that heat reduces battery life. So do everything you can to prevent it from over-heating. Use a cooling pad when possible.
2. SHUT IT OFF. When you are in a hurry it is common-place to 'think' you shut the laptop off before you slammed it in to your bag - but if it merely went to sleep - you are killing your battery life. If you close the laptop too early after clicking 'shut down', the computer will bypass your command and simply take a nap. When it naps - the battery life is still being depleted. So wait a few extra moments for the laptop to completely shut down before closing that lid.
3. SPEND FOR THE BIG GUNS. The next time you purchase a laptop, or if you HAVE to buy a new battery - go for the ones with extended life. They really are extended and the loss every year won't seem as harsh. They will last significantly longer than the usual ones.
At this point you can reset your screen saver and your power management options as they were. If you do this at least 3 to four times a year, you may actually get a longer life out of your battery.
4. RECONDITION IT. Apple does a great job of telling its users to do this but they are about the only ones. There is a secret process and its called reconditioning your battery. Here's how it works:
- Turn off your screen saver and any other power management options that would normally put your laptop in to a sleep mode. Then...
- Fully charge your battery. Then...
- Unplug it and let the battery run down just to the point of shutting down on you. Then...
- Charge it all the way back up again.
5. CAN THE BELLS AND WHISTLES. They can be fun but if you are running on battery power a lot - you can probably do away with the extra sounds and the cool screen savers. Even dimming your display can help elongate battery life.
6. GIVE IT A REST ALREADY. Sometimes you need to just walk away so that you can re-charge your personal battery. So shut it down - ALL the way down - and go for a walk. Do some shopping and buy your virtual assistant a nice appreciation gift. :-)