There are three main ways to maximize the life of your laptop. Let’s call the first method “eliminating to save power;” the second “caring to maintain power;” and the third, “adding to increase power.”
Eliminating to Save PowerThe first crucial step in maximizing the battery life of your laptop is to understand what drains the laptop’s power. Once you determine the biggest power drainers, you can focus on saving laptop power by eliminating the biggest power-draining culprits.
The Windows 7 Engineering blogreleased a pie chart which displays where the power in your laptop is allocated to. With an astounding near 50%, the laptop’s LCD screen sucks up the juice. So, the obvious answer with this, is to dim your screen!
Friedbeef.com offers some other good elimination tips on saving the battery’s life:
- Dim your screen
- Cut down on programs running in the background
- Cut down on external devices, such as external hard drives, flash drives, WiFi, a mouse
- Don’t multitask
- Turn off the autosave function in Microsoft word and excel
- Lower the graphics use
Caring to Maintain PowerThe second method of maximizing your laptop’s battery life is to take proper care of your laptop. When you properly care for your laptop’s battery and power supply, it can enhance how long your laptop will remain powered. There are several ways, again I find help from Friedbeef.com and from Lifehacker.
- Defrag regularly
- Keep the battery contacts clean
- Place computer on hibernate, not standby – hibernate saves your PC where you left off and shuts it down, but standby does not save nearly as much power as hibernate.
- Go easy on PC demands – for instance, constant laptop usage over several hours or days is not good for your device. Also, certain uses are more PC intensive, such as watching DVDs, downloading files, or playing video games.
- Optimize your hardware for power consumption
- Set up and optimize your power options
- Avoid laptop overheating
Adding to Increase PowerThe final method of maximizing the battery life of one’s laptop is to add on functions or gadgets to increase the amount of power your laptop can support. This method may cost you more money, but the add-ons can be greatly beneficial. Again, Friedbeef is useful.
- “Add more RAM – This will allow you to process more with the memory your laptop has, rather than relying on virtual memory. Virtual memory results in hard drive use, and is much less power efficient. Note that adding more RAM will consume more energy, so this is most applicable if you do need to run memory intensive programs which actually require heavy usage of virtual memory.”
- Replace your old battery with a new one
- Invest in a spare laptop battery
- When all else fails, get yourself a more efficient laptop!