The great thing about a laptop is the portability. You can work from your backyard, a client’s waiting room, and even while lounging at the beach. But, when the battery goes dead, the convenience quickly turns to frustration.
The ability to stay unplugged longer is on nearly every laptop user’s wish list and no matter how much battery life improves with a new laptop release, it seems it’s never long enough.
The average laptop battery charge lasts just 1 to 6 hours. (Computer Hope)
If you’re at the airport about to board the first of two flights back home, 1 to 6 hours of charge might not get you through even two movies. While there are some newer laptop models that more than double that maximum battery life, they come at a hefty price.
So, what can you do to get more time out of your laptop when it’s unplugged?
At Pro Tech Guy, we make it our business to know all the tricks of the trade and that includes how to boost your laptop battery life.
We pride ourselves on providing fast and professional computer and laptop repair in Framingham, MA and we always go the extra mile to give our clients tips on maximizing their tech.
Read on for our five satisfying ways that you can get a little more time out of your laptop battery charge.
Extend Your Laptop Battery Life with our 5 Tips
Some simple adjustments to maximize battery life can make the difference between the screen going black while you’re in the middle of writing an awesome presentation and getting that extra time you need to finish and save out.
If you’ve ever been frustrated and found yourself running for an outlet before your laptop signed off, read on for a little relief!
1. Adjust Your Power Settings
Newer operating systems give you more control over laptop power settings than you’ve had in the past. You can now choose which to prioritize, battery life or performance.
In Windows 10, Windows Power Slider:
- Click or tap the battery icon in the task bar
- You’ll see a slider that allows you to choose between performance or battery
- The sider is available for AMD and Intel platforms running Windows 10, build 1709 and up
The slider allows you to choose between:
- Battery Saver (biggest power saver)
- Better Battery
- Better Performance
- Best Performance (biggest battery drain)
You can also find more power saving settings by typing “power options” into the Windows Start search box
MacBook Energy Saver:
If you’re using an Apple MacBook, you can find their energy saving options under System Preferences > Energy Saver.
You’ll get battery saving options like:
- Automatically switching graphics modes for better battery life
- Putting hard disks to sleep when possible
- Adjusting how fast your display turns off when not in use
2. Change Graphics and Display Settings
Having your display on full brightness can be one of the biggest power drains on a laptop battery. External graphics can also be shortening the time you have between laptop charges.
Did you know that screens can use twice as much power between their brightness setting and the lowest light? Most displays can be dimmed by using the F2 and F3 keys on a keyboard, and many have a little sun icon on them to indicate brighter or less bright.
If you’re using a Nvidia or AMD chip, switch your laptop to use integrated graphics instead and it will save you some of that battery charge.
3. Upgrade to an SSD
If your laptop also lags and you’d like to improve speed as well as eek out a little more battery life, consider upgrading to a solid-state drive (SSD). SSD’s don’t have any moving parts so they’re not only quieter, they also take slightly less power to run. Another bonus is the speed improvement because of the flash method it uses to access files.
4. Unplug or Turn Off Peripherals
If you have a mouse or other peripheral plugged into your laptop’s USB port, unplug any that you can do without while you’re not connected to a power source.
Each peripheral has to be powered by your battery, from webcams to speakers, so turning off or unplugging as many as you can do without can lengthen your battery charge. Some laptops will have the ability to disable internal webcams. Switching off sound can also help (a tiny bit of power is used for every “ding” from an incoming email).
5. Scale Back that Multitasking
Are you a power user that likes to have a bunch of tabs open in your browser and have multiple apps open at a time? Not only does that max out your memory and make your laptop slower, it also drains your battery faster.
Keep the bare minimum of apps running at a time to save battery life and watch those multiple browser tabs, many websites now have so much going on (like videos and popups) that even one or two of those “heavy” pages open can totally drain your productivity and battery.
Looking for Ways to Improve Your Laptop’s performance?
Pro Tech Guy can help with both large and small fixes to improve performance and battery life for your laptop. Is your laptop getting slower? Want to look into getting an SSD? We’re here to help!
Just fill out our form online and we’ll get right back to you in no time, or give us a call at 508-364-8189.