Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Maximize the performance of your laptop batteries

A laptop battery is designed to provide a certain backup time. However, the backup time provided by a battery depends on several factors. Your laptop battery will not give you the assured backup time if you are ignorant about the components and tasks that consume battery power.  

If you own a laptop, then you should know that the hard drive, display, and CD-ROM/DVD-RW are some of the power guzzling components in your laptop. You can maximize the performance of your laptop battery by giving importance to smaller things you do when your laptop is running on battery power. Let’s take a look at some simple tips that you should follow to get extended backup time from your laptop batteries

  • ·         Dim the screen:
The factory settings for your laptop display are moderate or on the higher side. You can save a considerable amount of power by lowering the brightness of the screen. All you have to do is move the brightness slider to a lower position where you are able to read the text on the screen without straining your eyes. 
  • ·         Unplug external devices:
External devices such asa USB flash drive, card reader, USB mouse, andiPod consume power when connected to your laptop. Even though the individual power consumption by these devices is very small, the overallpower consumptionof several such devices can fall in the moderate power consumption category.
If there many such devices attached to your laptop and if they always remain connected to your laptop when it is running on batterypower, then you are losing a considerable amount of laptop battery charge. You should make it a habit to remove the external devices connected to your laptop to save power. Avoid using an external mouse and use the touch pad instead. These small tips can help you in your objective to get extended backup time from the laptop battery.
  • ·         Use the CD-ROM/DVD-RW less often:
The CD-ROM/DVD-RW spins the disc inside even when you are not accessing any data from it. You should use the CD-ROM/DVD-RW less often if your laptop is running on battery power. If you have anydata that you need to access, then you should copy the data on the hard drive and remove the disc from the drive. You can also create an image of the disc and load it in a virtual drive and access the data when needed.
  • ·         Turn down the volume:
 You should lower thevolume of the internal speakers if you intend to save battery power. Also avoid connecting external speakers while the laptop is running on batteries.
  • ·         Defrag your hard drive:
You should defrag the hard drive when your laptop is connected to an electrical outlet and before you go mobile. Your laptop’s hard drive will consume less power if there is no fragmented/ less fragmented data on your hard drive. If the data is heavily defragmented, the read-write heads of your hard drive will have to spin more across the platters. This will increase the power consumption of the hard drive.