Is there some quick and easy way to make the battery on my Windows 10 computer last longer? Seems like the computer needs charging faster than even a few months ago.
There’s an inherent tradeoff in people’s desire for batteries that will last a super long time and their unwillingness to carry 20 pound laptops (which you wouldn’t want on your lap either, now that I think about it). Batteries have gotten slimmer and have better capacity and, of course, computers are designed using far more energy efficient chips and components, but there are still some basics that are going to lower your battery life. The two most obvious are the age of your battery and the brightness of your screen.
Turns out that Li-ioN (lithium ion) batteries – the majority of battery components in modern devices – have a lifespan and as they get older they hold less charge. Eventually even if you do everything just right, they’ll run out of juice faster, until you finally throw in the proverbial towel and replace it. Or, as with too many devices, replace the entire device.
The other major power consumer is your laptop screen. If you like having it at 100% brightness, well, there’s a cost associated with that. Drop it down even to 80% and you might be able to eke another 30 minutes out of your battery with that one change alone.
But Windows 10 has some smart built-in battery management technology too, all generally tucked neatly into the “Battery Saver” feature. To enable it, you can simply go to the shortcuts (typically from the tiny notifications icon on the lower right corner) and choose “Battery saver”. See it in the below grid?
Enable Battery Saver in Win10 and your battery will last longer. But it’s not a monolithic on/off feature, you can fine tune the settings and even see which programs are being the most greedy in terms of power consumption too.
To do that, search for ‘battery saver’ in the [Cortana] search box:
There ya go, choose and click on “Battery saver settings” in System Settings and you’ll see a window that contains a decent number of options and features you can tweak:
If you’re suspicious that you have one or more programs that are responsible for most of the battery drain – like a graphically intensive game or a program that’s rendering video files, for example – and you can check to see if you’re right by clicking on the “See which apps are affecting your battery life” link.
But even without that, keep an eye on the Battery notifications area. You can see above that its biggest complaint with how I have my laptop configured is that the screen’s at 100% brightness.
Scroll down a bit further and there are more options:
I don’t have it enabled, but you really should choose to have Battery Saver come on when your battery gets below a certain threshold. This way if you are running out of juice it’ll help you eke out every possible minute of computing time. Also note the checkbox at the very bottom: “Lower screen brightness while in battery saver“.
Those should help you get better battery life out of your computer. If your device is more than a few years old, however, you might also want to consider paying to have the battery replaced entirely. Good luck!
Pro Tip: I’ve got tons of Windows 10 help here. Please take a few minutes and check it all out!