What’s the point of having a laptop when its battery constantly dies on you? If you feel like you’re always searching for a power outlet, ranead this article. Here are concrete ways of extending your laptop’s battery life so that you can work as long as you want, wherever you want, and not have to worry that your laptop is going to zonk out just when you need it the most.
Laptop battery tip # 1: defrag your hard drive
When you defrag your hard drive, you make it more efficient, so it doesn’t run more programs (and use more battery) than it needs. This is particularly important for non-Mac systems, which isn’t as affected by fragmentation. You can defrag your drive at night, while you’re charging the laptop.
Laptop battery tip # 2: Adjust your screen light
When your battery’s running low, adjust the brightness of your screen. This can help extend your battery life, but since a dark screen can cause eye strain, do this only when you’re desperate.
Laptop battery tip # 3: Close unnecessary programs
You probably have a lot of programs running in the background that you don’t even know. Desktop search, iTunes—they’re all great, but when you’ve got just 2 hours of battery life to spare and you’ve got a major sales presentation to make, they’re more of baggage than bonus. Shut them off, for now, just as you would to preserve a cell phone battery
Laptop battery tip # 4: Unplug external devices
This includes anything you’ve plugged into your USB (like a mouse or cooling fan). And, if you use your laptop to charge other devices like an iPod, do that when it’s plugged and charging, too.
Laptop battery tip # 5: Amp up the ram
This can help if you’re using programs that use up a lot of memory. RAM uses energy, too, but it’s more energy-efficient than virtual memory.
Laptop battery tip # 6: don’t use a CD
CD and DVD drives will really drain a battery—it takes a lot of energy to spin that device! So take out CD’s when you don’t need them, since the drives may continue to run even after you’re done viewing the files.
Laptop battery tip # 7: clean your battery
See those metal contacts? They can get covered in dust. Wiping them with a damp cloth will help with the transfer of power, so your laptop battery charges more efficiently.
Laptop battery tip # 8: charge regularly
You should use the laptop battery once every 2 weeks. And if you have a LiOn battery, don’t let it completely discharge; the ‘memory effects’ we worry about only happen for older batteries.
Laptop battery tip # 9: Click ‘hibernate’
Standby mode lets you pick up right where you left off, but it keeps programs running. Hibernate saves more power because it shuts down completely, but saves the ‘state’ of your laptop like the files you have opened or the programs you are using) so it knows which to activate when you finally turn it back on.
Laptop battery tip # 10: Work on one program at a time
The more programs you run simultaneously, the more power your laptop consumes. So instead of shifting back and forth between multiple windows (Email, Office documents, music player) pick one task, finish it, and then open the other program when you’re ready.
Photo from detector-pro.com