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Are your gadgets running out of charge too quickly?
Whether we are keeping in touch, staying entertained or tracking our fitness, we’ve all got gadgets we use daily. They have become such a part of our lives that we are at a loss when then run out of charge. But the more we use them, the faster that seems to happen.
Don’t worry, we’re here to help! Read these 8 tips for making batteries last longer.
1. Reduce Time Spent at 100% Charge and 0% Charge
Reduce the time your battery spends at either 0% or 100%. Both extremes of high and low will put a strain on your battery. Over time, this can cause your battery to start burning out and you’ll see your battery power not lasting as long.
If possible, use a partial charge that will stop when your device reaches 80%. If you can’t do that, then unplug your device as soon as it gets to 100%.
2. Avoid Fast Charging
We’ve all been there and forgot to put our phones on charge before we need to leave the house for the day. Or forgetting to charge the rechargeable batteries ready to keep us entertained on that long journey. Fast charging is convenient when we need it, but long term, it can be detrimental to your battery health.
Super-charging Lithium-Ion (Li-Ion) can degrade them faster and shorten their lifespan. It can also cause overheating which is an issue in itself. Fast charging sends more power through your device in a shorter amount of time – this can damage the hardware.
If you’re able to charge in a cool, well ventilated and air-conditioned space it should be fine. But if you’re already running an intensive app or game, or the environment around you is hot it can cause issues.
3. Power Saving Mode
You can find Low Power Mode on many of your devices. What this mode does is reduce the amount of power your device uses. You’ll be able to find Low Power Mode in the battery section of your general settings. All you need to do is select it to turn it on.
When using this mode, you’ll find the battery in your device will last longer before you need to charge it. The pay-off is that some features might take longer to update or load up. And some features won’t work at all in Low Power Mode.
4. Go Lithium
While rechargeable batteries are kinder on the environment there are some gadgets that they’re not practical for. Think smoke alarms or gadgets we don’t use as often where recharging isn’t needed as much. Or for devices like cameras where they’ll have been charging for hours and can drain in minutes.
In those cases be on the lookout for discounts and deals on lithium disposable batteries. These last a lot longer than alkaline disposables and there are lots of different types of lithium ion batteries to choose from. You’ll also need to buy less of them to keep your devices powered up.
5. Don’t Mix Batteries
Between the different battery types and brands, voltage and chemical make up vary. As such, we recommend that you don’t mix your batteries. If you do, you could be risking device underperformance and battery leakage.
For better, longer-lasting results, replace your batteries with the same brand and size. Also, don’t mix worn-down batteries with fresh ones. This can put a greater strain on the newer batteries and wear them down faster.
6. Keep Them in the Packaging They Came In
We all know what it’s like when you get a new box of anything – you want to open it and unpack it right away. But hold off on that!
Where possible, don’t even open the box until you’re ready for the batteries. The advantages of keeping them in their packaging are:
- The packaging protects your batteries from environmental factors like humidity. These environmental factors can affect the power and longevity of the batteries.
- If your loose batteries touch each other, or touch something metal they can short circuit. If they’re kept in their secure packaging, it’s less likely this can happen.
- You can keep tabs on what you’ve used and what you haven’t. It’ll be easier to avoid mixing used batteries with unused ones.
7. Put Batteries in the Fridge
Keeping batteries in the fridge can help prolong their charge. It’s especially useful for NiMH batteries. They can keep 9/10 of their full charge while stored in those cool conditions. At room temperature, they might only keep a small part of that charge.
With Alkaline batteries, the benefits won’t be so high (retaining only an extra 5% of their charge). But, if you live in a hot climate, that’s when you’ll see the real benefit of storing them there. Hot weather can actually see your batteries deplete faster.
When keeping batteries in the fridge, make sure you remember these three key tips:
- Store them in an air-tight, moisture-proof container to keep them dry. It’s hazardous to use wet or moist batteries.
- When you take them out to use them, let them warm up to room temperature first before using them.
- Keep a set of batteries outside the fridge in case of emergencies so you’re not left waiting for them to warm up.
8. Control Heat and Humidity
The first point to make is that heat is the biggest enemy of batteries and you should avoid them getting too hot. Keeping them out of direct sunlight is also a must! The optimal temperature to store your batteries at is 59°F.
As well as heat, humidity isn’t kind on our batteries either. It can cause corrosion, condensation and even leaking. That’s why you need to keep them in an air-tight container if you’re putting them somewhere like the basement or in your fridge. And when you get them out to use them, always let them sit at room temperature for 24 hours before use.
Making Batteries Last Longer is a Breeze When You Know How
So there you have it! If you follow these 8 tips, no matter the gadget, making batteries last longer will be a breeze!
For rechargeable batteries in devices like your phone and laptop, avoid hitting extremes. Sticking at 100% or letting it drain to 0% too often can be detrimental to the shelf life of your battery.
Keep your batteries cool and avoid direct sunlight, heat, and moisture. When storing any batteries, keep them in a vapor-free, air-tight container. Don’t mix and match and you’ll be sure to make the most out of your gadgets’ battery lives.
If you found this article useful, check out our other blog posts for more tech advice!