Storm Ready: How to make your phone battery last as long as possible

With a storm bearing down on Ireland, it's time to investigate how to get the most out of our phone battery
Storm Ready: How to make your phone battery last as long as possible

Little changes can keep your battery charged for longer.

It’s one of the best examples of a 'first world problem': we have smartphones but as they age, their batteries’ performance declines dramatically. It’s a situation many of us have come to accept but there are a few things you can do to prolong your phone’s battery without cutting back on its uses.

Don’t let your battery be constantly fully charged, but similarly, you don’t want it to be struggling along at 1% a lot either. Batteries struggle most at those extremes, but regularly keeping your battery somewhere between 20% and 80% charge is best for it as it is when its lithium ions are under the least strain.

Use an official charging cable from your phone’s manufacturer. Yes, it can be tempting to stock up on those €1.50 ones you see in discount stores, but some of those can do more harm than good. 

Some official chargers, such as those from Apple, include technology that stops the charge when the battery is full while an alternate brand charger may not cut off the charge, leading to degradation of the battery and reduced battery life. Not all unbranded cables will cause this, but it’s better safe than sorry when you’re dealing with such an expensive and necessary tool.

Monitor the apps that are working in the background while you’re not using your phone or while you’re on other apps. Some can be working overtime and if it’s not necessary, then you can delete the app or tinker with its settings to ease the pressure on your battery. 

Similarly, reduce your screen brightness as this can be the biggest drain on a battery. You probably don’t need the light at 100% and your eyes, as well as the battery, will benefit from the reduction. 

If you’re travelling on a bus or train or using your phone somewhere like a café, connect to WiFi whenever possible or your phone will be working hard to maintain a signal while you’re using it on the go.

If you find your phone and its battery have slowed down and aren’t performing as they once did, it might be time for a new battery. If your phone is under warranty, the manufacturer may cover the cost of this. 

Otherwise, look to reputable repairers who can replace the battery for you at a low cost. If your phone costs a few hundred euro, it makes sense to spend €50 to extend its usability rather than fork out on a brand new smartphone unnecessarily. Definitely don’t try to do this yourself, leave it to the professionals.

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