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Actually, we have wondered how these 3 things would effect the life of our laptop batteries:
1. We will often work from our laptops for hours at a time (many, many hours!), with the cord plugged into the wall the whole time.
2. Sometimes, Jim will leave his laptop “on” and plugged in — even when he’s not using it — for days.
3. Sometimes, I will leave my laptop in “hibernate” (lid closed) and plugged in — for hours (sometimes days) at a time.
Laptop Batteries 101
We wanted to know if we were weakening our laptop batteries by doing these things, so we went to the experts…
The folks at LaptopBattery.net had a lot to say about this topic.
The highlights that we took away from their article:
- Laptop batteries are always losing a small bit of their charge. The hotter the temperature, the faster notebook batteries lose their charge.
- A laptop battery’s capacity decreases with each cycle of charging and discharging (or usage).
When laptop users leave their laptop battery inside the machine but leave the computer plugged into the wall, the laptop battery is going through a constant charge-discharge cycle. The notebook battery is sitting unused inside the notebook, discharging a little faster than normal because of the notebook’s heat. Once its charge level drops to a predetermined level (which is different for each manufacturer), the AC adapter provides extra juice to “top off” the notebook battery. As the laptop battery gets older, it tends to self-discharge a little faster, which accelerates the process even further. Source
Laptop batteries normally offer 600 to 800 charge/discharge cycles over 1 to 3 years of useful life. When you use your notebook battery as described above, you are needlessly using your supply of recharges.
Don’t miss their thorough explanation for each of the above statements, along with lots more great tips about laptop batteries from LaptopBatteries.net.
And from someone else with firsthand experience:
I’ve seen plenty of laptops, including my own one time, fry because of leaving it on for extended periods of time (weeks). — Source
On a related note…
I got my first computer in 1986 and immediately started writing, saving documents, and organizing my entire life on it. Thus began my love affair with gadgets and all things tech. I built my first website in 1998 in old-school HTML code — before websites were "a thing". Blogs weren't invented yet. It was the same year that Google was born. My husband and I created TheFunTimesGuide.com in 2004 — before YouTube, Twitter, Reddit, and Mashable were launched. That was the year Facebook started and 'blog' was the Word of the Year according Merriam-Webster. Ever since then, anytime a new electronic gadget hits the market… I have to have it. (My husband's impulsive nature to try out every new tech gadget invented is even worse than mine!) When I'm not trying out fun new tech gadgets, you'll find me at the corner of Good News & Fun Times as publisher of The Fun Times Guide (32 fun & helpful websites).