When I bought a new notebook recently, I resolved to take better care of my laptop battery this time than I had with my previous ones. With my last laptops the battery was more or less dead after a year or so. If a battery is treated with care it can last up to four years. I thought that I knew how a notebook battery has to be handled, but after googling this topic, I realized that quite a few of my beliefs were outdated. Most of my layman's knowledge about rechargeable batteries was related to Nickel-metal hydride (NiMH) and nickel-cadmium (NiCd) batteries, which are no longer used in laptops (as far as I know). In this post, I summarize the tips I found on the web to preserve lithium-ion (Li-ion) batteries, which are probably in most laptops nowadays.

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battery-in-the-sunThere are two important keywords when it comes to battery preservation: charging and temperature. That is, how the batteries are charged, and the temperatures to which they are exposed, are key factors that determine their lifespan. Today I will write about how temperature influences the lifespan of a laptop battery, and in my next post I will cover charging and discharging.

Many people believe that low temperatures are harmful for batteries because they think of past winters when their car didn't start in the morning after a cold night. However, the technology used in car batteries has little to do with Li-ion batteries. The same applies to non-rechargeable batteries, which can even be recharged a little by exposing them to the warm sunlight. The truth about Li-ion batteries is that high temperatures are their worst enemy. Therefore, the following tips will help prevent laptop batteries from getting too warm.

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  • Always use a laptop on a hard surface. Don't put it on your lap (despite its name) or on thermal insulating materials such as cushions. If you like to work in bed with your laptop, I recommend using a laptop table. I have this one, and I am quite content with it.
  • Try to avoid charging the battery while you are working with the laptop. Charging the batteries increases your laptop's temperature. The problem is that the CPU, the graphics card and the hard disk also heat up your laptop, which adds to the temperature increase experienced when charging the battery. Many vendors deliver their laptops with software that allows you to disable charging. You also can remove the battery while you are working on AC current.
  • Make sure the laptop's ventilation can always work properly. Don't place objects before the ventilation systems opening. Don't run or charge the laptop while it is in its case.
  • Don't leave the laptop in the car or under the sun in summer. Use a bike. It keeps your laptop battery cool and your own battery healthy. And too much sun exposure causes only skin cancer anyway. 😉

In my next post, I will give you some tips on how to charge and discharge a laptop battery in a way that prolongs their life.

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Laptop batteries

15 Comments
  1. Adam Ruth 12 years ago

    Great tip, thanks. I look forward to the next post as I've never been sure of the best charge/discharge cycles.

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  2. epiquestions 12 years ago

    Use AC adaptor if possible instead of battery. Remove battery from the laptop and keep it in your laptop case/bag. Especially at home, if you are going to use the laptop as your desktop computer, removing the battery will definitely prolong the life of your "lap"top

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  3. Adam, thanks. Charging a batter with care is the most difficult part. I will probably post this article today.

    epiquestions, you're absolutely right. As things stand now, I will dedicate a whole article only to this issue.

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  4. [...] How to take care of your laptop battery to prolong its lifespan [...]

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  5. Nsikis 12 years ago

    The lifespan of a laptop battery depends on usage. overcharging the battery weakens the cells, even using non-recommended chargers for charging the battery is not safe at all. Thanks for the care tips.

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  6. Mike S 12 years ago

    We use a product called the Laptop Flip that we purchased at newpcgadgets. Our laptops run quite a bit cooler plus we can store them upright when not in use saving desktop space.

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  7. kpoplover0394 10 years ago

    thanks for this 🙂

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  8. el john 9 years ago

    for battery caring laptops and netbooks, just use SAMSUNG featured with "Battery life extender" (80 percent full of charge and automatically switch to plugged in, can be turned off) in this case the battery will not be overcharged as what other laptops do. Overcharging can be very threat to li-ion batteries and rapidly loose charge holds

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  9. sumit 9 years ago

    sir, i'm a full-time laptop user...and my laptop is on mostly 12 hrs a day.....
    i knw my battery will go down soon....but what i want to know is:
    I keep it on charge, whenever i use it.....most of time....
    IS IT OKAY...????
    or i should change my way.....

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  10. sumit, I also want to know something. Did you read the article?

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  11. sumit 9 years ago

    yes, i read the article.........

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  12. Also part 3 of the series?

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  13. sumit 9 years ago

    yes, sir.....

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  14. mrinal 9 years ago

    hey there very nice piece of information, personally i find thats it;s very important to use a cooling pad and not to charge and discharge the laptop at a same time.
    this will keep the battery healthy
    taking care of laptop is very imp for it's proper working.
    http://receivetipstricks.com/new-laptop-care-tips-and-tricks-2012/

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  15. Shital Bhalani 8 years ago

    Remove items from Startup in msconfig. This doesn't delete them -- it just tells Windows, "I'll start these as needed, thank you." Good examples of what to remove from Startup: Java Updates, Flash Updates, Adobe Acrobat Manager.

    Thanks

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