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Keeping Your Gadget’s Battery Healthy

by Travis Harvey | November 18, 2009

batteryAverage consumers rarely think about battery maintenance.  Charge it when it needs charging, right?  Wrong.  If you’ve recently gotten a new laptop or even if you’re looking to keep your batteries healthy, we’ve got some tips to keep your battery going strong and lasting long.

When you first get a new device, the battery usually comes with a minimal charge.  You should completely discharge any existing power from the battery.  Once depleted, allow the battery to fully charge before using it.  Try doing this 2-3 times before you start normal usage.  This helps to condition the battery to store up a maximum charge.

A battery’s energy level is determined by a chip in the computer that needs to be recalibrated from time to time for the most accurate estimations.  Every few months, you should completely drain the battery and allow it to fully recharge, like you hopefully did when it was new.

Your battery needs exercise.  This means removing it from AC power and allowing the battery to get some usage.  If you’re the type who leaves the device connected to AC power for weeks at a time, you should consider recalibrating the battery more than every few months or lowering your AC power dependency to a healthier standard.

Protect your battery by keeping it away from extreme temperatures.  Exposure to very high temperatures will lower your battery’s potential charging levels.  Avoid leaving your device in the car during the summer, as it will permanently damage your battery.  Cold temperatures cause batteries to drain at a much faster rate, but once the device warms up, the battery will return to normal.  Batteries stay healthiest if you store them between 50 and 95 degrees Farenheit.

Following these tips will help maximize your battery’s power and lifespan.  Batteries are expensive to replace so do your best to take care of them.  If I forgot any battery-protecting tips, help me out with yours in the comments.