Your fancy laptop or smartphone is nothing more than a mass of dead circuitry without a battery. And these rechargeable powerhouses have a limited lifespan: they will lose power faster and take longer to charge as time goes on.

You should take excellent care of your gadget to extend the battery’s usable life as much as feasible. This entails developing healthy charging habits and exercising caution when it comes to battery storage. Here’s everything you need to know about it.

Lithium-ion Battery Science

Lithium-ion technology is used in today’s rechargeable batteries in smartphones, tablets, laptops, and other gadgets. They do, after all, contain lithium ions. In our investigation of Tesla’s Powerwall battery, Popular Science explained:

When the battery is charging, positively charged lithium ions pass through an electrolyte solution in the battery cell from one electrode, the cathode, to the other, the anode. As a result, electrons concentrate on the negative side of the anode. When the battery is depleted, the opposite occurs. Those electrons, on the other hand, go through circuits that are external to the battery and provide power.

Those electrons provide the power for your smartphone or tablet—or, in Tesla’s case, your complete home. Scientists have changed the chemical mix inside lithium-ion batteries over the years in an attempt to make them live longer, charge faster, and perform more efficiently. Lithium-ion batteries, despite their ingenuity, have a finite lifespan since the cycle of battery charging, discharging, and recharging can only be repeated so many times. Although the duration varies, most rechargeable last two to three years.

This is due to the chemical reactions that take place at the anode and cathode. Thin layers of insulating atoms form as they happen, impeding the electrodes’ efficacy, so if you’ve seen your smartphone or laptop’s battery life dwindling, you may blame atomic accumulation.

What is the process of charging and recharging a battery?

On a wireless charging pad, a Samsung phone with a lithium-ion battery charges.

You don’t have to keep an eye on a lithium-ion battery recharge, but it’s preferable not to ignore it. Samsung

So, how do you extend the life of your lithium-ion battery? You may have heard that you should charge and discharge your device completely when it first comes out of the box, but this isn’t necessary with current batteries. The most important factor is how you charge your phone or laptop once you’ve begun using it.

Shallow discharges and recharges are preferable to complete discharges and recharges because they put less strain on the battery, allowing it to live longer. Battery University recommends that when your battery is discharged, you only let it get to 50% before topping it up again. You should avoid charging a lithium-ion battery all the way to 100% when you’re charging it back up.

If you completely charge your device’s battery, don’t keep it plugged in. Instead, use the short discharge and recharge cycle that we discussed earlier. This isn’t a matter of safety: Lithium-ion batteries have built-in safety features that prevent them from exploding if they’re left charging at full capacity. However, if electronics are regularly plugged in while fully charged, they will age faster in the long run.

There are exceptions to the norm that shallow charges and discharges strike the lifespan sweet spot. Allow the battery to fully discharge to roughly 5% once a month to re-calibrate its self-assessment. This process enables your laptop or smartphone to provide you with a somewhat accurate “estimated battery time left” indication. Full discharges on a regular basis, on the other hand, are not a smart idea. According to Samsung, you should keep your battery at least 20% charged at all times.

By the way, these are all guidelines. There’s no harm in charging your phone overnight, and current phones and laptops have features in place to reduce battery strain if your gadget is plugged in all the time. Fortunately for users, modest adjustments and improvements to the technology are made every year, so when you replace your smartphone, you’ll get a lithium-ion battery that should last longer between charges and overall.

Battery Storage and Maintenance

A black Samsung phone sits on a red platform on a tan table, charging on a black wireless charging pad.

Make sure your phone doesn’t become too hot or too cold. Samsung

Extreme temperatures are another factor that lithium-ion batteries dislike. Avoid leaving phones and laptops in hot automobiles or cold rooms as much as possible, as these temperature extremes will shorten the life of their batteries. Overheating whilst charging is something to be wary about, however if your phone or laptop maker has done their job, this shouldn’t be an issue.

As an added precaution, make sure you’re using the official charger that came with your phone or tablet, or buy in an exact replacement. This ensures that the charger is compatible with your device’s battery and that it is tailored to charge it as quickly as possible. The approved charger will use the finest practises for the overall health of your battery.

If you’re planning to store your laptop or smartphone for a lengthy amount of time, Apple and other sites recommend leaving it with a charge of roughly 50%. Turn your gadget off when storing it, and, as previously stated, keep it in a Goldilocks environment: not too hot, not too cold.

More battery charging tips and guidance should be included in the literature that comes with your device, so study it thoroughly for any additional instructions on how to handle your valuable power packs as gently as possible. If you take this extra precaution, the battery within your phone or laptop should last at least until you’re ready to update.

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By JenniferKIM

Jenniferkim is a General Blogger & writer who has been extensively writing in the technology field for a few years. He has written several articles which have provided exciting and knowledgeable information on Finance, Business, Tech, Travel, Sports in Italy.

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