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9 Tips for Beating Battery Gremlins

Cell Phone Battery Life Saving Tips

Did you start the year with new apps for your phone or laptop? Maybe you wanted to be more productive... or just have more fun. Possibly you had time over the holidays to figure out some of the great things your cell phone can do... and now you're doing them. One thing you may have noticed along the way is that, with each new app, your battery runs down more rapidly. If you are like most people who maximize their cell phone with both fun and useful apps, your battery doesn't even last a day.

While batteries are getting more powerful, cell phones, computers, and apps are getting more robust and requiring more battery resources. The best thing you can do for your cell phone is learn how to manage its growth, and minimize unnecessary battery drain. Here are a few tips to help you get more use out of your cell phone or laptop battery.

Cell Phone Battery Temperatures
  1. Turn down the screen brightness.  The brighter the light the more juice is pulled from the battery.

  2. Avoid extremes in temperatures.  Batteries like room temperature. They discharge faster when they are too hot or too cold.  If your area has temperatures above 90 or below 32, the car is definitely not the best place for your tech gear!

  3. Do not put the cell phone on vibrate, especially if you get lots of notifications.  The motor that vibrates the  cell phone uses far more energy than the ringtone.

  4. Don't select live wallpaper.  While movement on the screen is charming and engaging, it uses a lot of battery power because it is live all day long!

  5. Avoid location services like GPS and Navigation unless you are actually out and about using them.  When you are sitting at your desk or reading a book, you already know where you are... the phone doesn't have to tell you.

  6. Turn off Bluetooth and WiFi when you aren't using them.  Making these connections uses the battery for no purpose.

  7. For that matter, turn off all apps that you aren't using; including chat apps and push settings for emails and apps that use your location to provide information.  Knowing which apps are running and how to change their settings or turn them off is important to maximizing battery life.  For cell phones, there are free apps such as TaskPanel that display active items and allow you to shut down anything that is running unused in the background.  Laptops have programs that run in the background as well.  On a PC, go to the Windows Startup Menu and remove unnecessary programs.  You can always enable them again through the start menu when you are ready to use them.  If you are a Mac user, you can turn off inessential programs in the Task Manager.  

  8. Prevent your cell phone from roaming when there's poor or no coverage.  The constant attempt to make a connection really drains cell phone batteries.  You don't have to be in the mountains to have poor connectivity; it might be that your house or your cubicle is in an obstructed area.

  9. Be aware that using the flash on your camera takes a lot of power.  Of course, you need the flash when you need it, but keep in mind that when you use it, your battery will run down faster than usual.

Look for an upcoming blog on proper charging techniques.

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