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Thursday, January 5, 2012

Laptop Batteries

Ok, my dear husband's two year old laptop no longer has any battery power (about 5 minutes or so before it dies) so we stopped by the local battery specialist and learned some important things about Lithium-ion and Lithium-polymer batteries.

A laptop battery's lifespan is approximately 1,000 charge cycles, or 2-4 years under normal operating conditions.  The battery in question had around 75 cycles and was determined to be dead.

My husband's laptop normally stayed plugged in.. after all, you would think that plugging it in would bypass the battery.. wrong. Instead it was damaging, by overcharging the battery.  

It was recommended that you discharge the battery until you get the warning on the laptop or even better, discharge completely, then plug it in.. charge to full and then disconnect the power.   Run the battery down and recharge it at least once every month, even better, every couple of weeks but optimally.. every day.

Matter of fact, he stated that with a new battery, do this discharge cycle a dozen times or more to "synchronize" the cells. It increases the longevity of the battery.

Some things that will degrade your battery:
  1. HEAT.. heat will dry out the battery so don't leave your laptop in the car in the summer. 
  2. HEAT.. so don't let the battery get hot by leaving it on while on a bed or other soft surface. 
  3. HEAT.. keep the vents on the laptop free from dust by using a keyboard cleaner (canned air) on the vents.
  4. Leaving the battery constantly charged will greatly reduce the life of the battery just like my dh thought  was the right thing to do.
  5. Keep your system running optimally by defragging your system monthly and using system resources wisely.. The better running, the less energy used, prolonging your battery.
Who knew?  The person that will be selling us a replacement battery to the tune of about ♪♫ $90 ♫♪. So who is the smart one?  Well, we are now...

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